Kolkata's SOI 6 offers a delectable mix of world cuisine along with a wide selection of cocktails
The word Soi immediately conjures up images of Thailand and its countless tiny alleys crowded with kiosks vending local delicacies. Anyone who has visited the kingdom will gladly recall the sumptuous delectables available at reasonable rates at any time of the day in the Soi’s or side streets of popular Thai cities like Bangkok and Pattaya.
Our expectations were reasonably met at this new entrant, SOI 6, in terms of a few unconventional Thai dishes that they had on offer, if not the ambience. This Park Street address that previously housed Bodega Cantina Y Bar and The Parking Lot has been done up in pink, grey and silver replete with wall art, but there’s nothing remotely Thai about it.
Nevertheless, what really sets this 4,500 sq ft gastropub apart from its competitors is its eclectic assortment of signature cocktails and drinks. A brainchild of Vijay Bokadia, Prakash Bansal and Gaurav Jhunjhunwala (who also co-owns the diner 1000 BC), this multicuisine resto-pub also boasts of a menu that has a mix of unusual Thai and global cuisine, with some dishes with a hint of regional influences.
We started our lunch with the finger-licking Thai Cigars — crispy spring rolls filled with glass noodles and rolled like a Cuban cigar. Served with kitchen-made chilli honey sauce in cutting chai glasses, they make for great Instagram clicks. But the dish that followed, Kai Ho Bai Tong, a smoked Thai chicken wrapped in smoky banana leaves could have been prepared better, we felt. The notes of lemongrass, basil, coriander and galangal were not in perfect unison and clashed badly.
The skewered Crispy Chicken Leaves that we sampled were piquant and could be a good choice for a starter but we wished the crispy coating was a little less thick. We followed up the starters with a refreshing Berrys Frappe and the ever-cooling Watermelon and Feta Cheese Salad that worked wonders as a palate cleanser.
For mains, we sifted through their global menu section and settled for Moroccan Tagine, an appetising dish replete with Khus Khus rice, chicken and veggies. The chicken was perfectly cooked, soaking in all the right notes of herbs and spices tossed in the colourful rice. If you are not an experimenter, they have dependable Indian and Chinese options too.
The desserts were surprisingly toothsome and you can try from their eclectic range of sweet nothings including Thai Chocolate Samosa, Mumbai Falooda Kulfi and Chocolate Mudpie among others.
What you must have here are the boozy fusion drinks that pack quite a refreshing punch with their fruity notes during the summer. Try them with some light starters if you are out having fun with your friends.
Hot tip: If you are planning a friends’ night-out you can drop in to catch live performances by popular bands that often play here.
Price for two: Rs 1,000 + taxes (without alcohol)