East Brisbane newcomer Thai Boi Eatery is serving traditional cuisine with a spunky twist
One of the brains behind beloved Thai restaurant Mekhong has struck out on his own with new East Brisbane eatery Thai Boi, taking time-honoured culinary traditions and turning them on their head with some sassy creativity. Take a peek inside …
When it opened in New Farm in 2018, Mekhong immediately set itself apart from other neighbourhood Thai eateries thanks to its creative take on Northeastern Thai fare. Big flavours, bold presentation, warm service – it was a steadfast favourite of the community, and continued to be one after it relocated to Wynnum in 2021.
When Mekhong co-founder Joe Kittiphat Nunyoi struck out on his own to open a new Thai-centric concept, he was eager to keep a lot of what made Mekhong great, but he also wanted to inject a bit more pizazz into his next venture. That venue is Thai Boi Eatery, a brand-new nosh spot tucked away inside The Wellington Apartment Hotel in East Brisbane. “He’s young, creative, energetic and – most importantly – affordable,” says Joe of Thai Boi Eatery’s spunky persona. “The concept is all about introducing something fun and exciting with every single dish that comes out.”
Enter the lobby of The Wellington Apartment Hotel and you’ll quickly spy Thai Boi Eatery to your right. Peer inside the 26-seat dining room and you’ll be welcomed by an eye-catching retro aesthetic, with an eclectic mix of vintage 70s-style decor and a lively colour palette of green, bright orange, yellow, off-white and brown creating a mini time capsule in which to dine.
It’s a fitting setting for Joe’s style of food, which draws inspiration from his Thai roots – the time spent cooking with his mother and grandmother in rural Isan – and penchant for circumventing tradition. “This is not traditional Thai,” admits Joe. “I think at Mekhong we definitely put a bit of spin [on Thai cuisine], but I would call Thai Boi a double spin.”
Mekhong fans will be pleased to know that Thai Boi Eatery boasts plenty of shared DNA, with Joe sprinkling a few of his signatures (such as the kao jee – a dish of fermented pork, with garlic, rice and fresh herbs) in alongside some brand-new items. The menu kicks off with a selection of starters like Thai-style spring rolls with house-made truffle mayo, Joe’s Fried Chicken with savoury satay sauce, Madame Crabi Bites (sand crab meat encased in garlic waffles) and Mr. Joey Boi (kangaroo tartare served in an Isan-style salad with puffed rice crackers).
Main courses include a rich slow-cooked lamb shank massaman curry, roasted duck in Samui curry sauce with lychee, pineapple and veggies, tempura-prawn salads, and an extra-special penang curry (based on Joe’s mother’s recipe) boasting premium beef and a selection of vegetables. Thai Boi Eatery’s menu finishes with desserts, including the Sago Bomb (a fusion of sago, rockmelon and smoked coconut) and the Dream Island (a sticky rice dish with fresh mango, dark chocolate and coconut cream). Though Thai Boi Eatery is licensed, the team is also allowing BYO. That said, an on-site bar, affectionately dubbed the Bangkok Parlour, will soon open for pre- and post-dinner cocktails and chit-chat.
Thai Boi Eatery is now open to the public. Head to the Stumble Guide for more information.
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