Don't despair; you don't have to reach for cup noodles and compromise on a good meal.
We have quite a few food delivery services popping up of late. No, I'm not talking about the usual fast food or cardboard pizza, but local food that we love. Yes, comfort food we grew up with. Don't you think we need more of these? Plus it's great to support local businesses!
We can summon a nice meal with just a few clicks of the mouse or taps on the smartphone. The only thing easier to get is probably reaching out for a drink of Coke®, which is easily available all around! Many online food vendors also carry Coke, making it easy to complete your meal experience with a refreshing beverage.
So let's check out the food delivery options for local cuisine:
Hawker Express has been nicknamed "Uber for Street Food". They have 20 local food stalls like Ah Nam BBQ Steam Fish, Benny's Rojak Istimewa, Hafiz Nasi Ayam Penyet, and Changi Village Satay (many of which are halal). Another 20 stalls will soon join the list. There's no minimum order (yay!) and Hawker Express delivers islandwide (yes, even to god-forsaken Jurong Island).
The site was started when two hungry executives working late at night decided they didn't want fast food or pizza delivered, and were frustrated at the local food deliveries available. So they started their own and launched Hawker Express in April 2015.
I was testing out the system and ordered Hokkien Mee (S$4.90) and Beef Horfun (S$5.20) from Ah Nam (see photo above) which has 198 items on its menu. Ordering is really fast, and I got a Whatsapp confirmation from their friendly call centre.
The food arrived to my doorstep in 90 minutes, nice and warm. I was pleasantly surprised to find the Hokkien Mee is the dark sauce KL-style one (I'm still looking for my Holy Grail for that dish). The Beef Horfun was pretty decent.
What did hurt a little was the flat S$15.90 delivery fee (for orders from up to two hawkers; additional S$5.90 for each subsequent hawker). It's all right if you pool orders together with friends and colleagues, less so if you're dining alone. But I found out from their boss that this will change in the next month or so to more affordable distance-based fees, as they scale up their operations. This is one site I'll be watching in future.
Update 4 Dec 2015: they have moved to a distance based charging system, so now delivery charges are from S$9 onwards per hawker.
Shi Fu Ge
Photo used with permission from Shi Fu GeThere are quite a few options for folks working in the city, but what if you work or live up north? It's been said, "there's nothing nice up north" but that isn't true. With Shi Fu Ge, you can get tasty cze char delivered to your doorstep.
Among the delicacies is the signature "Imperial Pot" (above) which consists of two meaty live Sri Lankan crabs cooked with mussels, prawns and clams together with potatoes and corn in your choice of spicy or non-spicy sauce.
Residents and office workers in Yishun, Woodlands and Sembawang are the luckiest because there is no minimum order and no delivery charges for orders above S$30. For the rest of us, minimum order ranges from S$30-70, and delivery charges S$3-5, depending on how far you live.
Drinks are available when you order food at Shi Fu Ge. And yes, they offer Coke!
Grain is one of the most sophisticated food delivery services out there. The focus is on healthy delicious meals delivered in as little as 15 minutes! I had the honour of meeting the team behind this operation, and am amazed at how they did everything. See my post here:
They deliver islandwide (at a charge of S$9.50) but delivery is free if you're in their "Hotzone" - selected Marina Bay and Raffles Place areas like One Raffles Quay, Marina Bay Financial Center, Ocean Financial Centre, OUE Bayfront, NTUC Centre, Asia Square, UOB Plaza, One Raffles Place, Singapore Land Tower, Chevron House, Clifford Center, Republic Plaza.
They choose healthy cooking techniques and use of complex carbs along with fresh natural ingredients. The menu changes daily, and you can order your food five days in advance.
Gokul is well known among the vegetarian community for not only excellent food but an amazing array of it - over 500 dishes at the restaurant! North and South Indian, Asian cuisines, all done vegetarian style. For delivery, it's a smaller menu but still offers good variety. It's only for evenings - 6pm to 10pm. Well, lots of people work late into the night and eat at the office. This might be a good office dinner for small groups.
I think Coke goes great with Indian food - the fizzy drink is such a great palate cleanser and the good news is, Gokul Vegetarian sells Coke! Which flavour of Coke do you normally like? My preference is for zero sugar, zero calorie Coke zero® or Coke light®.
Call 62-59-59-59 for delivery.
Gourmet To Go
Gourmet To Go is another food delivery aggregator. They deliver from various food outlets and restaurants. For local cuisine, they have Red House Seafood, Ah Dong Teh House, Fusion @ Pine Grove. Even D'Bun from Joo Chiat is here. I decided to try out River Valley Nasi Lemak.
Now the way to order is to pick your dishes via the website, and call to place the order. When I called, they immediately knew my postal code and what my order was, because their system had captured it. I was stumped. But anyway, I was glad I didn't have to repeat my whole order to them.
The nasi lemak arrived promptly at 90 minutes. These S$7.50 packs are pretty huge portions. Some in my family liked them, some found the rice not "lemak" enough and the sambal not spicy enough.
Minimum order is S$25, and there is a surcharge of S$5 for orders below S$40. And then there is this "survival charge" of 10% on all orders, to help them sustain operations on the low margins. I have heard these delivery services don't make much; that's why so many of them come and go.
Well, River Valley Nasi Lemak offers Coke in its drinks menu, so you can add them easily to your order. Coke and nasi lemak go very well together. There are combo sets including drinks for better value.
Call +65 635-22622 to order
This article is brought to you in partnership with Coca-Cola®. All opinions shared by writer are his/her own.