Ricetable History
Ricetable History
Ricetable History
Kevin
History of The RiceTable

The owner of The Rice Table, Kevin Sih, practically grew up in a restaurant. His parents started their first foray into the food business in 1976 when they took over an Indonesian restaurant, De Orient, located in the museum district of Amsterdam. Kevin, learnt the ropes of the business when he began helping out at the restaurant from the tender age of 12.

De Orient, helmed by his Indonesian-Chinese father, Sih Ing Kie and his Singaporean mom, grew to be a well-established Indonesian restaurant frequented by the concert lovers and museum crowd of Amsterdam. For his father, who was born in Semarang, Indonesia, it was like going back to his own roots.

 

Kevin would go on to start his own Indonesian restaurant, Kartika, a few blocks away from his parents’ restaurant. Kartika is still around today. His parents, however, retired from the business in 2001, after more than 20 years in what is known in the Netherlands, as the Horeca industry (Hotel, Restaurant and Cafe).

 

When he moved to Singapore in 1997, Kevin knew that he would carry on doing what he does best….running Indonesian restaurants. However, he was very clear that he didn’t want to start “just another Indonesian restaurant”, similar to the many found here already. Since he grew up catering to the Dutch love for Indonesian rice tables popular back home in Amsterdam, Kevin wanted to be the first to bring that unique style of dining here in Singapore. And so, the rest they say, is history.

 

The Rice Table Indonesian restaurant was opened on 13 October 1997 at International Building. The table warmers, a commonplace dining feature in Amsterdam, couldn’t be found here and had to be custom made in Indonesia. Noting the Singaporean obsession with food, Kevin made his rice table into an all-you-can-eat gastronomic buffet that he knew Singaporeans couldn’t resist.

 

The customers came and were intrigued by the whole concept of a rice table and even more intrigued by the table warmers. Some thought the warmers were hot plates to cook their own food! Others were amazed there was no need to order. But all agreed, that the food was really, really good! Don’t take our word for it, hop over to read our food reviews here. Some of our signature dishes like the satay and rudjak manis (fruit salad) are based on the original recipes from De Orient. Now that’s history!

 

There are more stories to share…..

 

Having grown up in Amsterdam, Kevin is in all respects, Dutch. Find out what he has to share on food and travel tips for Amsterdam in our blog here. His parents now spend a fair bit of their retirement on the idyllic island of Bali, where the family has a boutique villa resort. Find out more food and travel tips for Bali here!