The first of an annual cultural showcase of contemporary Southeast Asia by SPRMRKT boasts some inspiring entrepreneurs.
As 2018 marks the 45th year of harmonious Singapore-Vietnam diplomatic rapport, it’s easy to appreciate the timeliness of SPRMRKT Vietnam (until March 20), the first of an annual cultural showcase of contemporary Southeast Asia by SPRMRKT—itself a unique concept that merges F&B, retail and art experiences. Envisioned as an annual three-month long celebration, it spotlights food, drinks, design and art beyond what is widely familiar.
The curated showcase also draws attention to family businesses. “Southeast Asia is seeing a renaissance of homegrown businesses being driven by enterprising locals whose parents had migrated or have been away for a good period of their lives, now coming back to promote their own countries in different and exciting ways,” shares Sue-Shan Quek, founder and managing partner of SPRMRKT about the inspiration behind this initiative. “Our Vietnamese partners have only been amazingly positive and lovely to work with since the very first day we invited them to participate.”
These include enterprising food businesses, such as Stone Hill, which makes Vietnam’s only tree-to-bar chocolate and other cocoa products. These are available for sale at SPRMRKT and SPRMRKT Daily, and for the first time anywhere in the world. “SPRMRKT has stepped up and organised an event that not only introduces artisanal Vietnamese products to Singapore but also provides an opportunity for customers to get familiar with the makers of the products, know their origins and understand where they come from,” says Loc Pham, who is chocolate maker and founder of the company, which started out as a training farm in 2010; the brand was established in 2014. There’s even a segment featuring renowned chef Peter Cuong Franklin, founder of Anan Saigon, one of Ho Chi Minh city’s hottest new restaurant and bar concept. “I am very excited to work with Sue-Shan and Chef Joseph Yeo to bring the Anan Saigon experience to Singapore with modern interpretations of street food dishes such as the Đà Lạt Pizza, Bánh Xèo Taco, Foie Gras Imperial Roll and other new style Vietnamese dishes,” shares the Vietnamese-American Yale graduate who decided to pursue his passion in the culinary arts after a successful career in investment banking.
Here are our picks of gourmet experiences you should not miss.