Neighborhoods are like microclimates, each with its own ecology of dining opportunities. Some are arid desserts with barely a ramen shop in sight. Others are lush and fertile, with a rich range of cuisines and styles. And then there are the hidden corners, seemingly overlooked, that sprout an improbably eclectic choice of eateries and drinking holes.

A case in point: the narrow slice of real estate where Uehara drops to meet the looming shadow of the hulking Yamate-dori overpass. Over a span of barely 100 meters, you pass a smart little Okinawan diner, a greasy Chinese kitchen, an artisan pizzeria complete with wood-fired oven, a funky fish-centric izakaya, a couple of cool bars and one of the friendliest little Thai restaurants in the whole ward.

Soi 7 — pronounced Soi Nana, and named after one of Bangkok's most colorful nightlife streets — serves the standard gamut of curries, stir-fries and hawker foods. But everything is prepared with a hands-on, home-cooking feel. Set in a standalone wood-clad two-story house, the dining room is simple but spacious, with none of the ethnic tourist tat that clutters most Thai eateries here.