Every Vietnam tour is not complete without giving a try to the Vietnamese coffee. Being the second-largest coffee exporter in the world, Vietnam owns many types of delicious coffee considered as the best on Earth. BBC Travel has written about Vietnamese coffee: “In a country that can overwhelm the uninitiated, highly-caffeinated Vietnamese coffee is the perfect balance of bitter and sweet.”
Although being exotic coffee from French colonialism, Vietnamese coffee owns unique cultural features. Especially, along with street space, coffee is the first and foremost thing in the heart of Hanoi local people. To be honest, coffee is an indispensable drink of Vietnamese and a morning cup of coffee is definitely a local habit. That habit exists until now and becomes typical in Vietnamese culture. There are many forms of coffee houses in Vietnam such as book coffee, street coffee, or pavement coffee…
Uniqueness in Vietnamese Coffee
The most unique facet of the Vietnamese coffee filters process or how Vietnamese coffee is made. To brew a good cup of coffee, people have to learn the slow brewing technique, and then they can get pure and rich dark coffee with a stronger aroma and taste. In addition, a cup of Vietnamese coffee is added with sweetened condensed milk, which provides a thicker and creamier richness and enhances the smoothness of coffee. Coffee mixed with milk is called ca phe nau (brown coffee) in Northern Vietnam and ca phe sua (milk coffee) in Southern Vietnam.
The Most Popular Types of Vietnamese Coffee
Egg Coffee (Ca Phe Trung)
Egg Coffee is the top must-try and the only one existing in Vietnam. The egg coffee first appeared in the 1940s, using egg yolks as a convenient replacement for milk due to its scarcity. To make egg coffee, people use egg yolk whipped with condensed milk into an airy froth together with dark coffee.
Yogurt Coffee (Sua Chua Ca Phe)
Affected by the French, yogurt appeared early in Vietnam along with coffee. There are many types of yogurt coffee in distinctive toppings from fresh mango to fermented rice. The combination of yogurt and dark coffee may be strange but it will take you to enjoy the great experience of coffee.
Coffee Smoothie (Sinh to Ca Phe)
Recently, coffee smoothie becomes popular, found out in many popular juice shops. They sell coffee smoothie which blends fresh fruit with a touch of Vietnamese coffee. The coffee smoothie is a delicious way to get your caffeine and vitamins at the same time.
Best Places to Enjoy Vietnamese Coffee
Coffee is popular everywhere in Vietnam, so it is easy to enjoy a cup of Vietnamese coffee. However, for the best experience or a great view, you can consider some places below which are in Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City – the two largest cities with the most typical coffee culture. Vietnamese coffee is usually served in taller glasses and cheaper.
Trieu Viet Vuong Street in Hanoi
Trieu Viet Vuong is first mentioned due to its popularity as Coffee Street. Belonging to the Hai Ba Trung street area which has more coffee houses than any other places in Vietnam, the address 117 Trieu Viet Vuong which has existed for three decades is attractive enough for anyone to enjoy a “powerful” cup of coffee.
Café Giang 39 Nguyen Huu Huan
Café Giang is the best place for enjoying a cup of egg coffee in Hanoi. This coffee house is the first point of egg coffee in the 1940s. To be honest, your Hanoi trip is not perfect without a taste of egg coffee at the place it was invented.
Café La Tamia in Ho Chi Minh City
Café La Tamia in Tran Khac Chan will bring you to the ancient Sai Gon (another name of Ho Chi Minh City). With the quiet and ancient atmosphere, Café La Tamia gives memorable experiences to anyone enjoying Vietnamese coffee here.
Hanoi Old Quarter Coffee for Great View
To enjoy coffee together with a great view of the whole of Hanoi, tourists can go to Hanoi Old Quarter coffee which overlooks Hoan Kiem Lake. You can enjoy a coffee while seeing the likely never-ending stream of traffic passing by.