Leave hawker food out of Michelin Guide

It is more apt for the Singapore Michelin Guide to feature only high-end eateries ("S'pore to get Michelin food guide"; yesterday).

Having hawker fare assessed for this prestigious guide may have far-reaching consequences, especially with rising food prices.

An average-sized plate of duck rice costs between $3 and $3.50, which is a bit steep for the lower-income person. This dish is likely to be priced much higher if one eats it from a stall that is listed in the Michelin Guide.

Worse, other duck rice stalls may jack up their prices, regardless of whether they are in the Michelin Guide or not.

It is also difficult for non-Singaporean inspectors to judge our local hawker cuisine as they may be less equipped with knowledge of our multicultural society.

Moving around the world and being exposed to street food will not be enough to qualify one as a judge of Singapore's hawker food; one needs to be here for quite a while to understand and appreciate our cuisine.

I support the idea of Singapore getting its own Michelin Guide, especially in the area of fine dining, but I strongly suggest that our hawker food be left out of the equation.

Jeffrey Law Lee Beng

This article was first published on December 2, 2015.
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