Dine Inn was first launched in July 2017, and made a name for itself as Singapore’s leading homecooked food online platform. One year later, they’ve grown to have a total of 560 hosts on the platform, serving over 17,000 guests, with a high retention rate of 40% repeat customers. They’ve even expanded to Malaysia, and in time to come, intend to grow further still to countries like Thailand, Australia and New Zealand. Dine Inn promises not to burn a hole in your pocket either, priced at an average of $52.80 for a full meal, and in future, is set to take over even schools with a trial held at Maris Stella High School earlier this year to give students a taste of homecooked food during recess.
We recently revisited their platform this year and decided to experience a meal with one of their top rated hosts. Calling themselves 1place1dream, Kent and Min are a couple living a stone’s throw away from Farrer Road MRT Station. As avid travelers, the couple aim to incorporate their experiences around the world into healthy dishes and bakes presented in their homecooking through global tastes and ingredients. Decorating their living room in knick knacks gathered from all over the world and transforming it into a 12 seater dining room, we sat down with the couple for an eight course, seafood-focused meal prepared lovingly by hand.
The meal started off with Tempura Sea Prawns in a sweet honey garlic sauce. Inspired from their travels to Myanmar, the sauce was interesting – sweet and sharp but not pungent, with the garlic flavours tempered by the honey.
Also as an appetizer was the Chimichurri Shishamo, inspired by of course, South American marinade chimichurri, an interesting choice to pair with the Asian shishamo fish to mask and complement the fishy flavours.
Our next dish was Pacific clams were cooked in rice wine, similar to the Japanese style of cooking Asari clams in sake. These Pacific clams were very fresh, which, as Kent explained, was because they get their seafood directly from their supplier each time they received a booking from Dine Inn.
Towards the end of our meal, we were served spinach served in a seafood broth. Here, Kent and Min emphasised how much work and time had gone into making and boiling the broth, with its combination of ingredients that went into it.
We ended off the meal with a rice berry crab porridge, along with some meaty crabs cooked in a chicken broth. The rice berry crab porridge was a wholesome end to the meal, healthy and full of clams and crab. But the meaty crabs were no doubt the star of the entire meal, fresh and flavourful, once again due to 1place1dream’s keen relationship with their suppliers. One thinks about how this truly feels like a genuine farm to table experience, bringing fresh ingredients to the table in heartwarming home recipes.
It’s hosts like 1place1dream that show how everyone involved with Dine Inn truly have a lot of passion in what they do to make each meal a memorable experience. Like Kent and Min, Dine Inn promises the entire community of their hosts are similarly friendly and approachable, and are incredibly enthusiastic in presenting their recipes and homes to guests. Through Dine Inn then, one hopes to see a kind of movement arise, where the homecooked ‘hawker centre’ concept flourishes across each area in Singapore as the country slowly but surely learns to appreciate this style of dining, and the full bodied, homely experience of it all.
To sign up and book a Dine at Host’s Place experience, check out Dine Inn’s website here and for more information check out their Facebook page. Singapore Food Festival 2018 takes place from 13th – 29th July across various venues. For the full list of activities, visit their website here