The restaurant and bar precinct that is Everton Plaza has evolved into a buzzing nexus of hospitality since launching in 2019, with a host of eateries and drinking spots luring in locals every weekend. The suburban hub expanded in 2021 with the addition of a restaurant specialising in flavoursome Southeast Asian cuisine. Mai Gai opened at Everton Plaza in October, slotting into an alleyway space formerly occupied by Sichuan Papa. Helmed by lauded chef Suchada Nakbunchuay (formerly of Byron Bay institution Bang Bang), Mai Gai showcases a sizzling mix of Thai, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Laotian and Cambodian cuisines – with a border-hopping approach inspired by Suchada’s own travels through Southeast Asia. Bright, fresh and bold flavours anchor the menu, with dishes like wok-tossed cashew chicken, brisket massaman curry, whole fried baby snapper, chicken laab and Moreton Bay bug rolls traversing sweet, salty, sour, spicy, smoky and creamy flavour profiles. Former Emporium bar manager Ariana Pieterse has curated Mai Gai’s beverage list, which is headlined by an assortment of bespoke tropical-inspired cocktails. The restaurant’s interior boasts weathered timber, green brushed concrete, hanging greenery and an open kitchen – expect a transportive experience that’ll have you thinking you’re dining in Bangkok, not Brisbane.