Ari Thai takes its cues from the Soi Ari food market in Bangkok; an uber-cool neighbourhood market where local street food vendors and street-side restaurants serve up a host of fresh Thai eats, produce and dessert day and night. Open for lunch and dinner daily, Ari Thai Kitchen & Bar’s menu is a mixed bag of deliciousness, offering up a sizeable menu bursting with traditional Thai classics, from Tom Yum and Tom Kha, to Laksa’s, classic curries, and noodle dishes hot from the wok.
The shareable and interactive menu starts with smaller bites like sticky duck spring rolls and crispy fried king prawns with tamarind sauce, before moving on to lighter starters like tom yum and tom kha soups and an array of punchy Thai-style salads. There are dishes like whole squid and barbecued pork neck coming hot (and spicy) off the grill, as well as whole crispy barramundi and a series of stir-fried creations fresh from the wok. Those that love traditional Thai curries will get hot under the collar for Ari’s rainbow of curry options (which includes a hearty massaman lamb shank), while sticklers for the classics can opt for pad Thai, pad see ew, or lash out with the eye-catching fried rice served in a whole topped-off pineapple. The menu is rounded out with street-style Thai sweets like roti pancakes with ice-cream, mango sticky rice, and crushed ice with syrup and condensed milk. No Thai feast is complete without a cocktail (or two), so you’ll be pleased to see a wide collection of concoctions being shaken and stirred behind the bar, as well as wines, Thai and Australian beers, and an array of spirits on pour.
The 160-seat restaurant and bar features large group-dining tables, and smaller intimate nooks, all circled around an impressive bar. The seating sprawls out onto the balcony for a fun open-air setting. A complete overhaul of the space has resulted in an eclectic fit-out intended to balance tradition with modernity. Both the food and the fit-out are designed to transport you to the backstreets of north-central Bangkok, where you can kick back with your chopsticks in one hand and a mango-spiked mojito in the other.