Coffee in Vietnam (A podcast)


By: Daniel Wade

B-lining to the local coffee shop around the corner or robotically putting on a pot of coffee is a ritual most people have in the mornings. This is no different from America or Vietnam, but the taste of and the way the coffee is made does vary.

It’s 7 a.m. and I’m staring at the ceiling of my hotel room wondering what life has in store for me today. Am I going to hit the beach and get my tan on so my tine lines don’t say Idaho-farmer, or am I going to visit the temple ruins just outside of town. I mean really it’s really an easy choice, do both! I’m traveling the world and I work from Wi-Fi at any time of the day, so my schedule is pretty much what I want. But, before I can do anything I need to get some coffee and do a bit of early morning research on the area.

I casually walk down the pathway to the open floor plan restaurant and take a seat next to a fan overlooking a patio decorated with bamboo furniture. As soon as I sit down I am happily greeted by a Vietnamese local saying she will be right back with my coffee (kind of a regular now). A few minutes later I have my traditional Vietnamese drip coffee with the stainless-steel filter an all. The filter is called a “Phin” and has two filters both being paperless and that’s it. A very simple design creates a rich and thick coffee full of flavor.

Inexpensive to order, costs less than $1 in most restaurants and is a must try for coffee enthusiasts. When it arrives, the hot water is still being filtered through and you can watch the coffee being made right in front of you so you know its fresh. There’s nothing worse than going to a restaurant in the states and getting a cup of coffee that was brewed 4 hours ago.

After a few minutes of drip time you set aside the Phin and add sugar or concentrated milk, their go-to for some reason, and enjoy. There is something magical about this coffee, maybe it’s because of the simplicity of it all or maybe it’s because I’m traveling in a beautiful country enjoying exotic eats and drinks. Either way I’m picking up a Phin to bring back to the states!

After two cups of Vietnamese coffee I’m ready for my day, I pay 40,000 VND and set out for my adventures. Here’s to getting rid of bad tan lines and exploring historical culture sites without a care in the world.