Admit it; we all have expectations when we think about fine dining. We think about the white table service, exquisite European cuisine, and a confusing long line of cutlery. Many would feel uncomfortable with the formal dress code that fine dining places impose. Many people see fine dining as a solemn, sometimes uncomfortable affair. Fine dining then seemed like part of a luxury only the privileged were able to indulge.
However, the average diner in Singapore is changing. Many Singaporeans are earning and travelling more. Others are becoming educated in different cuisines and etiquette thanks to the Internet. Globalisation and our multicultural society has opened up our food culture to exhilarating heights. The rise of social media has helped Singaporeans find more food and restaurants. More chefs of different nationalities are entering the food circuit. Fine dining is radically different: it is no longer focused on Eurocentric fare, dining etiquette, or complicated cutlery.
How do we discuss fine dining in Singapore? We speak to 6 of the best fine dining restaurants in Singapore through a variety of different cuisines, and discuss with them about several issues: authenticity, social media, Asian Cuisines vs Western Cuisines, and local cultures being taken seriously in the fine dining realm.
This story is an adapted version of the Cover Story featured in Cuisine & Wine Asia, March/April 2019. To learn more, please read the full story in our latest copy of Cuisine and Wine, available in MPH, Kinokuniya, and Times bookstores.