Now that rainbow-and unicorn-themed food is losing its shine on Instagram, it is time to turn to "millennial pink" fare instead. The global trend, which is clearly targeted at the millennial generation, is fast catching on in Singapore.
It is not a stark, hot pink, but more a muted, rosy shade that conveys a touch of class.
An article in The Washington Post in August says: "Food is fashion and fashion is food and that's why pink food became gradually, then suddenly, a thing."
Last year, colour authority Pantone named Rose Quartz one of its colours of the year. Shades of pink are already on everything from shoes to clothes and bags.
Pink is often used in desserts and cocktails, but food-and-beverage operators and chefs are finding new ways to think pink - from pink tonkotsu ramen to pink cactus smoothies.
They say they picked the colour not because of the trend, but to stand out - preferably using natural ingredients.
At Ramen Champion, it is about being in the pink of health. Its general manager Kensuke Onishi says pink ramen was created for health-conscious diners.
He adds: "The pink tonkotsu ramen broth is infused with fresh beetroot and blueberries, giving it a natural pink hue. The response has been great - with up to 500 bowls of ramen sold in a day - because the ramen is very picture-worthy."
Among others that have embraced pink is two-month-old A Juicery at 21 Lorong Telok, off Boat Quay. Picking rose pink as the shop's colour was a no-brainer for its creative director Stephanie Er, 33, as she loves the colour.
It is also the original colour for the cold-pressed juice brand, which started out as an online business. She bought it over last year.
Although she did not plan the colour theme to coincide with the millennial pink trend, she notes that it has helped the store gain attention on social media.
She says: "Guys and girls come into the store, some even dressed specially in pink. They use the space to take photos and it makes me happy. We understand the need for the modern-day person to have both a coffee and a photograph.
"The hype may die after a while, so we'll see what it'll be like then."
Student Cassandra Lim, 19, says: "Pink is my favourite colour and a lot of my clothes and accessories are pink. I wouldn't purposely look for cafes that serve pink food, but if it's on the menu - such as a pink macaron or eclair - I'll definitely order it."
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Pretty in pink for a cause
Go millennial pink for a good cause, in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month this month.
At least three hotels - Goodwood Park Hotel, The Fullerton Hotel and Singapore Marriott Tang Plaza Hotel - are rolling out pink-themed meals until Oct 31.
Three restaurants in Goodwood Park Hotel are on board. The Shades Of Pink three-course daily set lunch ($42) at Gordon Grill includes watermelon gazpacho with smoked salmon, crab, compressed cucumber and berry foam; and US beef tenderloin with brussels sprouts, pickled beetroot and pink peppercorn sauce.
L'Espresso amps up its spread with a Pink English Afternoon Tea ($48 to $52), which features items such as beetroot quail egg, Parma ham and edamame hummus on parmesan shortbread; and pink somen with sakura ebi and sesame dressing.
For dim sum, head to Min Jiang, which offers a dim sum trio ($13) of rice roll with deep-fried vermicelli and mushrooms; glutinous rice with shrimp and peanuts; and mochi with strawberry fresh cream and strawberry bits.
At Singapore Marriott Tang Plaza Hotel's Lobby Lounge, the Perfect In Pink English Afternoon Tea ($33++ or $59++ with free-flow Belstar Cuvee Rose Sparkling NV) includes an array of finger sandwiches, scones and sweet treats such as rose macarons, lychee rose cake and raspberry doughnuts.
Afternoon tea ($50) is available at The Fullerton Hotel's The Courtyard, with items such as rose layer cake, bandung macarons and rosella-flavoured scones.
For each three-tier tea set sold, the hotel donates $5 nett to the Breast Cancer Foundation.
Where to get tickled pink
Tonkotsu Pink Ramen
Ramen Champion's Special Tonkotsu Pink Ramen (right, $15.80) comes with noodles, sliced char siu, ajitama egg, black fungus and scallions. Its hue is the result of infusing beetroot and blueberries in the rich tonkotsu broth for several hours.
Where: All Ramen Champion outlets, including Bugis+ and Changi Airport Terminal 3
Bird's nest brand NestBloom's Rose Almond Cream (right, $21 promotion price, $27 after Nov 9) is infused with rose and fresh almonds. To eat, place the rose-shaped bird's nest in a bowl, pour hot water over it and steep for five minutes.
Where: 13 Bussorah Street
Open: 11am to 8pm (Tuesdays to Saturdays), closed on Sundays and Mondays
From the floor to rose-pink tiled walls, two-month-old A Juicery is Instagram-worthy from every angle.
It specialises in cold-pressed juices (from $4 for 100ml), but the off-menuitems are what complement the decor.
Get the cold strawberry latte (above, $7), which comes with a layer of Meiji strawberry milk. It tastes as good as it looks, with a nice balance of coffee and sweetness from the milk.
The red velvet latte ($6 for hot, $7 for cold) is a seasonal item for Christmas (available till end of December). Get the hot version - after the milk is swirled in, you get an ombre effect of pink to red hues.
Where: 21 Lorong Telok
Open: 8.30am to 5pm (weekdays), closed on weekends
Move over rose wine. The all-natural pink tequila Codigo 1530 Rosa (above) is the pink tipple to look out for. Its colour comes from ageing the spirit for a month in uncharred French white oak Cabernet barrels from wineries in Napa Valley, California. This process enriches the natural agave juice while imparting soft floral Cabernet notes to produce a distinctive taste.
The Rosa is one of five in the Codigo 1530 family of premium tequilas, which includes Blanco, Reposado (aged for six months), Anejo (aged for 18 months) and Origen (aged for six years).
Where: Rosa available at Lulu's Lounge, Pan Pacific Singapore, 7 Raffles Boulevard, open: 7pm to 4am (Wednesdays), 9pm to 6am (Fridays and Saturdays), closed on other days; full Codigo 1530 range available at Club Street Social, 5 Gemmill Lane, open: 11am to midnight (Mondays to Saturdays), 11am to 4pm (Sundays)
Three-week-old bubble tea brand PlayMade by One Zo from Taiwan offers some unusual options.
Its pink cactus smoothie ($4.60, right) is made from the pink pulp of the cactus from Penghu County. The cactus is indigenous to Taiwan. The pulp is also used to make chewy pink pearls (add 80 cents) to complement your drink of choice.
Popular Thai tea brand Cha Tra Mue offers a range of rose tea - lychee rose tea, honey rose tea and rose milk tea ($4.50 each). The rose milk tea is the one that is pink. But do not drink it before an important meeting, a date or a flight. The staff will warn you of rose tea's laxative effects and they are not joking.
Where: Cha Tra Mue outlets, 01-31 Savourworld, B1-35 Tanjong Pagar Xchange, B1-K3 Clifford Centre FoodFare and 01-05 Far East Square; various opening hours
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