Pay what you want

Annalakshmi, an Indian vegetarian restaurant, is a bit of a unique concept in Singapore:

Annalakshmi is more than a vegetarian restaurant. It is the culinary arts centre of TFA. Guided by the principle, “Athithi Dhevo Bhava” meaning “the guest is God”, wholesome food is prepared and served with love by volunteers in an ambience which exudes Indian culture. No waiters or waitresses, only “Annalakshmees”, any of whom could be a school teacher, accountant, doctor, lawyer, housewife or retiree. A recent introduction at Annalakshmi is the concept where guests are free to eat what they like and give as they feel, there being no fixed menu price. We welcome our guests to give any amount they feel like giving because patronage at Annalakshmi ultimately supports the culture and charitable activities of TFA. And that which is given from the heart is more valuable for the good purpose it serves.

Yes, pay what you want in Singapore, a country where people value thriftiness above most else. Where bookstores, music stores, and clothing stores can’t afford their normal 14-day return policies because we would totally abuse them. And yes, this is spoken from personal experience, cough, although in my defense, I am a very good customer when all is said and done.

In any case, by coincidence, I continued my Indian theme today after last evening’s Bollywood performance. Harn brought me to try Annalakshmi for lunch. While we are normally voracious meat eaters, we quite enjoyed our set lunch options (she got North Indian, I got South, although we couldn’t really tell the difference). The place was packed too, mostly with Indians, always a good sign. 🙂


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