10 Types of Singaporean Eaters We’ve All Dined With

If you reside in the luxurious food haven of Singapore, you’re bound to meet similar groupies who chase down the latest food haunt, or dining fad that everyone’s going after. Llao Llao anyone?

Not to mention, it is commonplace to see young and old social groups alike catching up over food, as per our Singaporean culture.

But everyone has different eating habits that come into play, and you realise that each social group has that few specific kinds of Singaporean diners, that are just so typically characterised by our Singaporean attitude.  So, which category do you fall into? Or which one do you know?

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1. The thrifty ‘kiamsiap’ diner

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Yes, this is the diner that would be willing to spend tens or even hundreds of dollars pampering themselves over their meal choice, but yet, will just stubbornly refuse to fork out that extra $1 to pay for the wet tissue that they didn’t use, or the peanut appetizer they didn’t eat.

Perhaps its a matter of principle, or well, just being plain stingy, not that its a bad thing to save even that $1.

2. The fussy eater

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Extremely particular with what goes into their food, they would take the longest time to order, just to interrogate the waiter on what exactly goes into their food, and to decide whether they like it or not.

Poor waiters are often baffled at their multitude of questions and extensive, intricate knowledge only maybe paralleled by the chef. “Is the beef grass-fed or grain-fed?”, “You do use olive oil right?”, “What type of eggs do you use?”, “Do you have a vegan option for this dish?”, “Is there gluten in this?” are just some of their favourite questions to ask.

3. The Instagrammer

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No, it would be a cardinal sin to cut into that gorgeous, juicy steak of yours. Before a picture is taken. Even if it is constantly connecting on an emotional level with, and calling out to your rumbling stomach… Until, of course, the food photographer snaps a million square photos to find one just right for their Instagram feed.

They have transcended borders of self-consiousness, managing to ignore gazes of confused patrons at their antics while they are bent over at weird angles just to avoid the shadows, or to find that perfect angle. Oh wait no, they’re not done. They need to take selfies with the food too.

4. The Diva Princess Diner

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It is a personal belief of theirs that every service staff should treat them like the queen, regardless of how rudely they return the favour. You’ll be sure to see the diva kick up a scene if their service is anything sub-par to her standards.

Why’s there no ice cube in the water? That’s a head choppin’.

It would be equivalent to a national crime if there was a chip on her plate, stains on her cup or even water marks on her fork. Also, service staff beware. Were you not meticulous enough to change her plate between each course, there would sure to be a mini rage fit in your restaurant. And don’t expect to see her there again. Your restaurant would be ‘beneath her’.

If you’re dining with the diva diner, you better hope the waiter doesn’t spit into your food. Or snap your group photos for the main page of Stomp the next day. Cringe.

5. The Indecisive Diner

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Photo: blog.johnrchildress.com

The hardest thing you could ask them to do is to order. Everything just looks so appealing right? And even every suggestion you give seems to be shot down for one reason or another.

How about the chicken? Had it yesterday.

The beef? I don’t like how it’s cooked.

Try the fish? Doesn’t look very nice.

After what seems like hours on end, and changing their order for like about a hundred times, you’re so thankful and relieved that they managed to settle for that dish.

Oh wait, not really. They called the waiter back to change their order. For the third time.

6. The Sampler

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The tester just want the best of both worlds. No wait, the best of everyone elses worlds. Characterised by their favourite phrase “Could I have some of yours?”, you’ll be so focused on finishing your food faster than they can eat up your share… Up till you realise that they have already moved on and asked for portions from another disgruntled friend.

7. The Phone addict

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You start to wonder if the friend you’re eating with is actually in a relationship… with his phone. The constant calls, emails, texting, reporting of locations and furrowing of brows at God-knows-what on that tiny phone screen, you ponder if he actually even has time to be here. Or did that sinister gadget actually manage to capture his soul. Could that next text reply just wait till they finish ordering? Or eating?

8. The calculative diner

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Boy, you are so thankful for their existence in your social circle. Settling payments seem to always be their gift when you guys eat out, and they just make life easier for everyone when your group decides to go dutch, taking out their calculators and splitting every cent down to who ate how many xiao long baos.

You can just see their face twitching with agony when you suggest the bill be split evenly as they’re just dying to figure out how to split that check. After all, they do it all the time.

9. The loud-talking drama mama

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No doubt your group would be in the centre of attraction anywhere, with the drama queen around. She can’t help it, but her crazy antics and highly projective voice always seems to attract the gaze of many. Clocking disapproving stares from other patrons in a quiet dining environment, you start to question whether her affable nature is actually a vice or virtue.

10. The highly allergic diner

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A chef’s greatest nightmare: Someone who is allergic to one thing or another. These diners will make a request to the waiter to change a critical ingredient of the dish, and the poor waiter (who already knows it’s impossible) will still be obliged to go back to the kitchen and ask the chef who will give him the ‘not again’ face.

Can I have the seafood fried rice, but cooked without seafood?

Why step into a seafood restaurant when you’re allergic to seafood? Or dine at a roti prata restaurant when you’re allergic to gluten? For real allergies, the risk of cross contamination can be fatal, and chefs don’t want to take that risk. If your allergy is a legit one, chefs everywhere would suggest you just eat at home.

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