Auntie! Kopi-C Siew Tai!

Haha, this thought came across my mind this morning as I was having breakfast at the local coffee shop. In this particular world of ours, I believe that there are few, if not Singapore is the only country who has unique beverages made from everyday drinks.

This is not to say that there are no foreign countrys with their local drinks, but from a Singaporean perspective, I simply find it unique that for 4 types of beverages, we have so many varieties in total! And what’s best about ordering the local tea or coffee at the coffee shop is that the drink aunty or uncle will wail in their loud voices :

"KOPI-O, LIANG BEI!" – Two cups of coffee without sugar.

Sometimes, it will be in the dialect they are familiar in, and boy when each time the drink aunty or uncle wails, will memories of the past strike a chord in me. I believe that this unique aspect of Singaporean culture is not obvious to many but the sound of good old nostalgia is still struck. While each day, we embrace fusion delights such as the Singapore Sling, or even more commonly soft drinks and other beverages, have we momentarily forgotten the roots of our beginnings? Well, as the generation moves on, perhaps its just an unavoidable fact of transition from the phase of warm and tender drinks to that of the fizzy era.

Nonetheless, I won’t say that this feature of Singapore will become lost, but rather more subdued in nature. Still, it will be an interesting quirk while lifting a smile on the faces who remember the past.

And what are the common  4 beverages found in almost any coffee shop? Try guessing without reading on…lol

They are…

-Kopi ( Coffee )

-Teh (Tea)

-Milo (Chocolate Drink by Nestle)

-Horlicks (Malt Drink)

Here is a list of the common top 4 beverages, with the varieties and what they actually mean.

Traditional NameWhat does it mean?
Kopi-OPlain Black Coffee no sugar
Teh-OPlain Tea no sugar
Milo-OMilo with no sugar
Horlick(s)-OHorlicks with no sugar
TehMilk Tea
Kopi-CThick Black Coffee with sugar
Teh-CThick Tea with sugar
Kopi-C Siew TaiLight Coffee with less sugar
Teh-C Siew TaiLight Tea with less sugar
Kopi-O pengPlain Black Coffee
Kopi pengIced Coffee
Teh pengIced Milk Tea
Teh- AhliaTea with ginger
Teh-TarikPulled Tea

and the list goes on….