In the winter of 2010, I was working in Silicon Valley. My Singaporean friends and I were craving kopi siew dai and roti prata, but we didn’t know of any place that served those signature Singapore dishes. The closest thing we found was a Chinese-Hawaiian restaurant with an overwhelming menu that was 50 dishes wide. After 15 minutes, we finally figured out what to order and enjoyed every bit of those familiar Asian flavours. That’s how my team and I began. We built Burpple because the frustration we faced that day is a common one — it is difficult to find a good place to eat and order the best dishes.
For a few years since our launch in 2012, we thought we were just about helping people find good places to eat. But as we watched the Burpple community grow, it became clear that there was a bigger purpose behind solving those problems. We had hugely passionate people from all walks of life using Burpple to share about the meals they enjoyed with their friends and family. When we first started, we had no idea who would be sharing reviews and the kinds of people we would meet along the way. We forged friendships with some very special people, like Xing Wei, a university student who devotes his time to visiting newly opened places and sharing about them in detail on Burpple, lending his support to fledgling businesses. We also met Veronica, whose excitement for food is infectious. She loves organizing dinners with fellow Burpplers and talking to chefs about what they do.
We could not ignore that food and dining out was so much more than just knowing where to go and what to order. So we did some soul-searching at a company retreat and had countless long chats. We asked ourselves questions like, “what is at the heart of the problem of finding places to eat?”, “what is our mission?”, “why did I want to find a Singaporean restaurant when I was in Silicon Valley?”. It turns out the answers were fairly simple. Everyone wants to enjoy their lives. I simply missed home and wanted to enjoy a breakfast as I would on a normal Saturday in Singapore. The core of the company became clear: enjoyment.
Over the last two years, we learned a lot about the food and hospitality industry. As customers, we take good meals for granted just because we pay for them. It’s easy to forget that restaurants are run by people just like us. The restaurant business might be one of the most challenging businesses to be in, and most owners want to do their best to satisfy customers. We had the privilege of meeting and learning from people like Chalith and Nur of The Bakery By Woodlands Sourdough, a husband-and-wife duo with no F&B experience but tons of passion for serving the best bread and coffee they can make. We are also deeply inspired by chef Rishi of Cheek by Jowl, whose genuine care for his customers has left a lasting impression.
Despite the fact that food and hospitality are meant to facilitate warm human interactions, customers and businesses are so often divided. Many customers choose to only express their displeasure on the internet rather than allowing restaurants to rectify mistakes or clarify their intentions on the spot. On the flip side, restaurant owners don’t always have the right tools or the time to reach their customers and set the right expectations. Burpple is in a unique position to connect customers and businesses in a meaningful way and we’re taking our first step in this new direction. We imagine a world where hospitality exists not only in restaurants, but also online, before and after a meal.
The New Burpple
We’ve redesigned the discovery experience on Burpple to better reflect our vision of enjoyment. The platform reflects the learnings we’ve gained from both customers and businesses, and will continue to grow. The new home tab has a banner section that instantly inspires with the freshest content — from the latest Burpple Guides to collections of places to visit based on themes like the weather or time of the week. Also get the inside scoops on business owners’ stories and aspirations. To give you the best and most relevant recommendations, a smart new location card shows places near you, while the redesigned search experience allows you to quickly access the community’s authentic reviews. We’re also working with the leaders in reservations and delivery to bring even more enjoyment to our community — you can order via Deliveroo or reserve a table on Chope or Quandoo directly from Burpple.
The New Burpple is like a foodie friend one can literally carry in the pocket.
- Get inspired as the Home Banner features the freshest guides and collections of venues based on themes like the weather or time of the week.
- Get the best and most relevant recommendations from a community of real customers via a smart new “Location Snapshot” that shows what one’s current location is known for, and which nearby venues are newly opened or trending now.
- Get quick access to the community’s authentic reviews with a redesigned, easy search function.
- Get smarter search results by simply typing in a craving or a location, for example “Sushi at Orchard”, “Healthy in Paya Lebar” or “Supper Noodles”!
- Get the latest promotions, including those that are exclusive to Burpple, with some of the best restaurants in Singapore.
- Get the inside scoops on F&B business owners’ stories and aspirations.
- Fresh look and feel on the content throughout the platform
The dining table is one of the most fascinating platforms in the world. It is where billions of people share, heal, laugh, love and enjoy multiple times a day. These experiences at the table are made possible because of the people you’re with and the people in the kitchen. We stand for both customers and businesses. We’re dedicated to building a platform that connects them both, and I’m very proud of what the team has embarked on. The New Burpple is just the first step of towards this vision. Please enjoy!
— Dixon & The Burpple Team