You might think selfie culture reached its peak with the spread of selfie sticks to tourist landmarks across the globe.
But one cafe in Singapore is offering patrons the opportunity to down their double-shot frappuccinos with an added twist of narcissism – while looking a selfie printed onto their coffee foam.
Selfie Coffee, nestled within the colourful enclave of Haji Lane, boasts that it is the first joint of its kind to offer such a service since it started in 2015.
The process is simple – patrons can choose to either snap a selfie on the spot using the cafe’s specially-designed mobile phone, or send one they already have to the counter staff.
The staff then prepares the beverage, while the image is uploaded to a designated machine, which proceeds to print the image out on a bed of whipped cream.
The drinks are received with amused delight by customers, with some reaching for their phones to snap a selfie with their selfies.
The entire operation takes mere minutes to complete. “The technology is not new,” says business director Eddy Chan.
He explains that the printing technology mimics the mechanism used to print pictures onto personalized cakes. Coloured vegetable oils are used to replicate the colours in the selfies, with surprising accuracy and crispness.
However, printing out images on a liquid rather than a solid layer proved to be a bigger challenge, which is how a firm layer of whipped cream became the edible canvas on which the image rests.
Printing selfies on hot drinks is further complicated by the fact that heat quickly melts the cream, creating a slurried, and rather unflattering, selfie.
The cafe compensates by promising a smorgasbord of cold drink options instead, from caramel macchiatos to matcha lattes and mango passionfruit juice, all around S$8.50 (RM25.20).
Chan says that the selfies that the shop has received have run the gamut from wacky portraits and group shots, to favoured cartoon characters, pets and even their most beloved celebrities – all of which are welcomed by the cafe.
“When we present the drink to the customer and see the surprise on their faces, that’s our reward,” he says cheerily. – dpa