Kopitiam Talk!

Kopitiam Talk!

Hehe! It all started when Boonk asked, “Do you know what’s Andy Lau drink?” Huh? How would I know what Andy Lau likes to drink???

Hehe. He’s referring to a term that’s commonly used in our local kopitiam. Our local kopitiam drinks uncles have given nicknames to all the commonly ordered drinks.

If you want to immerse in our local kopitiam culture try ordering these drinks!!


I’ve absolutely no idea how these names are derived. If you do, do leave a comment and enlighten all of us!

I’m venturing some guesses here:

Coke light = Lai kor – I think it’s due to the similar sounding words?

Milo = tuck kiu – the picture of someone kicking a ball on the packet

Chinese tea = diao yu – the tea bag resembles a fishing rod

Kickapoo = Kak Poh (frog) Similar sounding

Soya Bean mixed with Chin Chow = Michael Jackson – From his song Black and White (Or is it Black or white??)

Chrysanthemum tea = Ah Huay (Flower) – Chrysanthemum flowers

Sprite = Si Bai (Failure) – Similar Sounding

?? = Xiao Bai Tu (Little White Rabbit) -I seriously don’t know what drink this is!! If you do, let me know!! *a suggestion from Sharon (Thanks!) that it’s Pokka carrot juice. Makes sense!!

Mineral Water = Andy Lau – Named after his song “Wang Qing Shui” (Water to forget love?!)

Pepsi = Bek Ki Bek Lo (Climb up and down in hokkien) – Similar sounding to Pepsi’s Chinese name Ke Kou Ke Le (可口可乐) *Oops! Wrong Chinese name as pointed out by Boonk the pro. It should be 百事可乐 (bai shi ke le)

Water = Hang Qing Pai (Bad Economy) – No money so drink water lar!!

?? – Lang Lai Le (Here comes the wolf!) – I must confess that I don’t know this as well!! Can someone enlighten me?! *According to Ernest (who is part time kopitiam uncle) it is star fruit juice!! Because when the wolf comes, the sheep runs away 羊逃 it sounds similar to star fruit in mandarin.

Horlicks = Dai Ka Ho (Hi Everyone!) – Obviously the similar sounding word of Ho and Hor

I think it’s some birds’ nest drink  = Jiao Zhui (Bird water) – Picture of the bird on the can


That’s all, folks!! Something bo liao for today!

0 thoughts on “Kopitiam Talk!

  1. Ermmmm… Pepsi in Chinese is 百事可乐.

    Anyway, some of these I also never hear before. Esp the rabbit n the wolf. Think one day we should literally try ordering drinks at the kopitiam using these lingo. We will sound sooooo pro! Or fall flat on our faces…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *