Soi No. 9, the Thai street food truck and restaurant located in the University of Tennessee Health Science Center Food Court, received a $5,000 grant from the Local Initiatives Support Corporation Memphis (LISC Memphis), for funding and support of their business.
Along with its food truck rotating throughout Memphis, Soi No. 9 opened its brick-and-mortar location in the UTHSC Food Court in April 2019. Owned and operated by executive chef, Tim Vimonnimit and his wife, Mai Mitrakul, the restaurant brings authentic, affordable, and accessible Thai cuisine to UTHSC and the city.
“It’s wonderful, the students and staff have been great. Dr. Ken Brown has been so good to me and Dr. Strome, dean of the College of Medicine,” Vimonnimit said regarding the experience after planting the restaurant’s permanent space in the food court among the UTHSC community. “Some people have never ordered Thai food, now when they eat Thai food here at the university, they come back.”
“We have done a lot of catering for the College of Medicine, and we brought food to the Board of Trustees meeting last year,” said Vimonnimit. “If they need something, we can provide it to them.”
Soi No. 9 also donates food to local nonprofit organizations. Vimonnimit said this grant will help in many areas of his business.
The restaurant experienced some impact during the pandemic, and its location at UTHSC closed in March and reopened in May 2020.
LISC Memphis is a nonprofit organization that provides funding and support for community development and revitalization of neighborhoods. With funding from GoFundMe, LISC Memphis provided aid to Tennessee businesses recovering from the impact of the pandemic and awarded $5,000 grants to two local businesses in Memphis, including Soi No 9. The mission of LISC Memphis is to forge resilient and inclusive communities of opportunity across America.