Southeast Asia’s Foodie Capitals, Laid Bare

Lean Joo Sean's char kway teow

Lean Joo Sean’s char kway teow

What’s the secret behind Southeast Asia’s most-visited foodie capitals? It’s not just the variety of their food – it’s also the variety of the cultures behind the cuisine.

You’ll see this fact laid bare in an interactive infographic of the Top 50 Foodie Capitals Of The World, created by UK-based law firm Bott and Co, a leader in flight delay compensation. Like an X-ray of each city’s food scene, the infographic reveals the cultural makeup of each city’s culinary variety.

Take Bangkok, Thailand: ranking #25 on the list, this bustling capital offers 48 different national cuisines on top of its own.

Created by Bott and Co (view the full interactive)

Then there’s Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia, ranking 34th in diversity with 43 national cuisines on offer. (Surprisingly, Malaysia’s major foodie city Penang doesn’t make the list.)

Created by Bott and Co (view the full interactive)

Finally, this writer’s personal favorite foodie city Singapore: ranking 40th with 42 national cuisines on the menu.

Created by Bott and Co (view the full interactive)

Unsurprisingly (given the location), Asian cuisines make up the majority of culinary cultures represented in the three Southeast Asian cities on the list. Ingredient availability and the size of their respective supporting expat communities encourage Asian-specific cuisines to take root in Southeast Asia and flourish – as the maps above can immediately tell you.

Bott & Co’s methodology involved using Google Maps to find the top national cuisine represented in each city. It’s not completely scientific – but it’s a great way to “eat around the world” by drilling deep into the foods that each city has to offer.

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