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May 3, 2023

Thai dishes to serve architecture fans

We asked Soi 38 executive chef Terry Intarakhamhaeng to pair dishes to each of the nominees in this year’s City of Adelaide Prize.

  • Main image: Terry Intarakhamhaeng at Soi 38 by Duy Dash
  • This article was produced in collaboration with the Australian Institute of Architects | SA.

Public voting is still open for this year’s City of Adelaide Prize, held as part of the South Australian Architecture Awards Program.

You have until 2 June to vote, which will enter you into the draw for a $100 voucher to be used at Soi 38 (whose refined interiors were designed by Walter Brooke + Simon Lobianco, and shortlisted in the 2022 SA Architecture Awards).

Below, Soi 38 executive chef Terry Intarakhamhaeng shares his suggestions for pairings.



SA Architecture Awards 2023
Voting for the City of Adelaide Prize closes on 2 June.
Browse the entries and vote here.

83 Pirie Street

Soi 38 pairing: Miang Kharn

This magnificent temple to the work day – with its exquisite exterior detail and welcoming public spaces – led Terry to contemplate the long-held traditions of Thai architecture.

He says often a Thai wat, or temple, made distinctive by its ornamented roof ridges, will feature curves within. His suggested dish of Miang Kharn uses the almost-round betel leaf to wrap around blue swimmer crab, which is topped with toasted coconut and palm sugar relish.

The leaf is also reminiscent of flags seen at temples, while he says the colour of the dish echoes the early morning light. It also harkens to the indoor garden that transforms 83 Pirie Street’s open lobby space into a real ‘living’ room.

“It is a very elegant dish, with plenty of flavour and a certain layer of tradition matching with the architect that would be put in,” Terry says.

Vote for 83 Pirie Street by Woods Bagot here.


Adelaide City Skatepark

Soi38 pairing: Pla Tod Yum Mamuang

Inspired by the new Adelaide City Skatepark’s “simple and stylish” design, Terry’s choice for this pairing is a garfish salad.

The dish first appeared on Soi38’s menu in 2021, after the restaurant’s move to Pirie Street.

Featuring deep-fried garfish topped with a finely chopped green mango salad, Terry says the meal feels very fresh and bright with the colours of sunlight.

The warm tones are also mirrored in the bowls of the new skatepark, creating an inviting hub for the skate community.

“It’s a dish that’s very common in Thailand. Simplicity is the key,” he says.

Vote for Adelaide City Skatepark by Convic here.


Dymocks Heritage Store

Soi38 pairing: Gaeng Om

Dymocks Adelaide’s heritage architecture – and the many worlds hidden within the store’s books – prompted Terry to recall his time as a regional tour guide in Thailand.

This pork curry is his mother’s recipe and its ingredients reference Thailand’s north. Terry says coconut milk is rarely used in the region, with a master stock of pork, lemongrass and chillies creating its base instead.

Warming and light, more broth-like than a curry, it’s a dish that will have you hooked right to the very last mouthful.

“It’s very simple, very flavoursome and also very tasty,” Terry says.

Vote for Dymocks Heritage Store by Grieve Gillett Anderson here.


Frangipani House

Soi38 pairing: Gaeng Kua Pae

Frangipani trees are abundant in Thailand, and Terry, a former Buddhist monk, says the ornamental trees could often be seen planted around temples and monasteries.

For Terry, Frangipani House’s orthogonal form also brings to mind the squares and rectangles of mandalas used in Buddhist meditation practices.

Terry’s chosen dish is one frequently served during religious festivals and community celebrations. The goat curry is a moreish combination of slow-cooked goat and yam beans cooked in an aromatic red curry of dried chillies, lemongrass, galangal, garlic and shallots.

“Animals are only killed for important events, weddings, engagements, graduations or to celebrate a birth,” Terry says. “This is a dish for a celebration!”

Vote for Frangipani House by Architects Ink here.


‘One: all that we can see’, public artwork at Lot Fourteen, Adelaide

Soi38 pairing: Gui Chive

Everyone sees art differently.

Sundari Carmody’s striking circular sculpture, which portrays the ratio between our universe’s seen and unseen matter, has Terry thinking about his Buddhist religion and the interconnectedness of all beings.

“In our religion that shape is connected to the circle of life,” he says.

Terry nominated chive cakes as the perfect pair for the sculpture, being a dish that was most often shared between patrons.

In Thailand, they are usually made with finely chopped grasses; here, chives substitute and are mixed with flour and steamed before pan frying.

“They’re served with a very dark, sour, sweet soy vinaigrette… It’s the most popular dish on our menu,” Terry says.

Vote for ‘One: all that we can see’ by Sundari Carmody here.

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