What Makes Vietnamese Coffee So Different? What is it about Vietnamese coffee that makes it so unique and delicious? Is that a natural or artificial phenomenon? Coffee is one of the most widely consumed beverages on the planet. Coffee’s enticing aroma and powerful kick may be found all over the world, from Colombia to Brazil to Vietnam.
Did you know that, behind Brazil, Vietnam is the world’s second-largest coffee producer? In other words, Vietnam is a significant contributor to the worldwide coffee experience (even though many people are unaware of this fact due to lack of transparency).
According to a nationwide survey in the United States, only 16% of consumers link Vietnam with coffee production. The kicker is that the United States is the world’s second-largest importer of Vietnamese coffee beans.
When the source and origin of the (wonderful) coffee they’re drinking aren’t indicated, American corporations acquire and use Vietnamese coffee beans in their products, and customers are oblivious of the (great) coffee they’re drinking.
For two reasons, Vietnamese coffee is exceptionally potent:
A Different Variety of Vietnamese Coffee beans
Robusta beans are used exclusively in Vietnamese coffee. Arabica coffee beans are the most widely utilized coffee bean, as it is the most regularly exported coffee from Brazil, the world’s largest coffee exporter.
Vietnamese coffee Robusta beans
Vietnam is the world’s second-largest exporter of coffee beans, primarily Robusta. Robusta is a classic bean in Vietnam and one of the most affordable (for obvious reasons).
Robusta coffee contains twice as much caffeine as Arabica (2.7 percent by mass vs. 1.5 percent in Arabica beans), making it slightly bitter due to the painful nature of caffeine.
Furthermore, because Robusta beans contain 60% less fat and sugar than Arabica, its flavor is frequently harsher and more distinctive than your typical cup of coffee.
Robusta has a rubbery taste, a lingering strong flavor, and more excellent acidity than Arabica, which is usually light and straightforward to drink. It smells like burning tires and has a rubbery taste.
If this flavor is enough to turn off Starbucks customers, many Vietnamese believe that only the Robusta’s intensity is the way to go.
In Vietnam, there are many places where the climate and soil are suitable for growing coffee. But where are the growing area for the best Arabica coffee in the world, not many people know?
Vietnamese coffee Arabica beans
Following in the footsteps of French missionaries, coffee trees have been present in our country since the 19th century and have flourished until today.
Currently, Vietnam is the country with the largest export coffee output in the world, with about 900,000 – 1,200,000 tons/year. But in the country’s 500,000 hectares of coffee plantations, there are only about 35,000 hectares of Arabica coffee, mainly concentrated in Lam Dong, Thua Thien Hue, Quang Tri, Nghe An, Hoa Binh, Son La, Dien Bien…
Arabica coffee is the most economically valuable of all coffee species. In the market, Arabica coffee is always appreciated for its delicious taste. The price of Arabica coffee is also often double the price of Robusta coffee.
Arabica coffee comes from the tropical highlands of Ethiopia (East Africa). Brazil and Colombia are the two main exporters of this coffee, with the highest rated quality.
A unique Vietnamese coffee blend of roasting and brewing techniques
Vietnamese drip coffee is the most common method of preparation. Rudimentary aluminum filters (filters) and a superb cup of black coffee can be found on every Vietnamese coffee cart. As you know, Vietnamese coffee is traditionally brewed in a “phin“, typically Vietnamese coffee has a distinctive and strong flavor and tastes strong because it has more caffeine than the others.
Vietnamese coffee blend of roasting
Vietnamese people prefer their coffee to be smooth and slow, and picking the appropriate time to drink it is an art in itself. Filtered coffee is typically robust, and the beans are frequently roasted to impart a bitter flavor.
Vietnamese Coffee is commonly served with condensed milk and ice (Iced milk coffee), and the coffee retains its original power – everything in that cup is dense, including the country! Vietnamese individuals begin and end their conversations with filtered coffee.
The distinction, and the specialty of Vietnamese coffee, are a robust flavor, a rich preparation, and slightly charred coffee beans.
It’s difficult to say whether it’s excellent or not because many Americans, including my friends, who grew up with Arabica coffee beans and milk cream, dislike the strong flavor of Vietnamese-style coffee. Still, I also know people willing to live and die for it.
Vietnamese coffee blend of brewing techniques
Starbucks Vietnam is forced to accommodate the athletic style of drinking coffee here (including people and flavors) rather than find a way around. Starbucks coffee was too bland, acidic, and disappointing for us.
But there’s more to Vietnamese coffee than just a robust flavor and a low price. We constantly welcome variations on our traditional taste and believe me when I say that this slightly toasted Vietnamese Robusta coffee goes great with cream, sugar, and even whipped cream on top. As well as a chestnut sauce!
Some Italian coffee blends suggest that Vietnamese coffee increases Crema (a thick coating of cream/foam on top of espresso), but I’m not an expert. In a store near my workplace, I can purchase an iced latte for less than $1.
NOTE: Have you ever wondered why Robusta beans are half the price of Arabica beans? Robusta coffee is “robust” in the sense that it is resistant to a wide range of pests and illnesses, as well as having a larger yield per area than Arabica coffee, allowing it to be produced at a lower cost.
Better, with fewer, if any, chemicals. The caffeine content of Robusta poisons many insects.
Furthermore, Robusta coffee includes antioxidants (7-10% chlorogenic acid vs. 5.5-8 percent in Arabica), therefore “Let’s get healthy and Robusta!”
Egg coffee – a Vietnam coffee culture
My daughter began raving about the meals soon after she arrived in Vietnam. Obviously, we raised her to be a foodie. No street food was too risky, and no dish was too unique. But it was Egg coffee – “ca phe trung”. I had to take a moment to consider the word combination when she first informed me about it. Hmm, egg + coffee… The mental image was not nice, I must say.
How to Make Egg Coffee?
Anyone who has ever enjoyed egg coffee will always remember the charming and truly unforgettable taste. How to make egg coffee is super simple, just a few steps and you have a delicious cup of coffee.
- 3 teaspoons ground coffee powder
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 tablespoon sweetened condensed milk
- 1 teaspoon raw honey
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- hot water*
Fin for coffee
Egg beater or hand beater
Large bowl or bowl
Step 1: Make coffee: You put coffee into the filter, pour boiling water in to make coffee water, then close the lid.
Step 2: Beat egg yolks: Beat egg yolks with 1 teaspoon of honey and 1 teaspoon of condensed milk for about 5 minutes and then pour into a cup.
Step 3: Done: Heat the coffee in the microwave for about 30 seconds – 1 minute. Add condensed milk to taste, Slowly pour the custard into the glass. Sprinkle cocoa powder on top if desired.
“Phin” filter – a popular Vietnamese coffee culture
The traditional way of making Vietnamese coffee is by using a special Vietnamese coffee filter, called a “phin”. It’s a cheap and flimsy contraption made of aluminum, easily found at most Asian grocery stores, but I have also seen more fancy and upmarket stainless steel versions sold in some specialty stores.
How to make Vietnamese coffee Filter
Ingredients For Making Small Filter Coffee
- Coffee: 25 grams
- Boiling water: 80ml
- Filters, cups, measuring cups ml
How To Make Small Filter Coffee
- Step 1: Rinse the filter with hot water.
- Step 2: Ladle 25 grams of coffee into the filter and place it on the cup.
- Step 3: Slowly pour 30ml of boiling water over the coffee surface.
- Step 4: After 2-3 minutes, when the coffee powder has absorbed all the water and expanded evenly, you proceed to compress the lid, add 50ml of boiling water, then close the lid and wait.
- Step 5: About 1 minute later, the coffee will start to drip down the glass. You wait until the small coffee is almost empty, then press the lid firmly to extract all the remaining coffee.
- Step 6: As a result, you will get about 40-45ml of coffee water. You can add condensed milk, sugar, or ice, stir well and enjoy.
“Phin” filter – Popular Vietnamese coffee brewing method
The Vietnamese coffee was rich, fragrant, and sweet, and it was ideal for a cool day, but it was the way of making and presenting it that truly pleased me.
The coffee was served in a tiny, transparent thick glass with a layer of condensed milk at the bottom and a stainless steel Phin Vietnamese filter on top.
The coffee had already started to dribble into the glass, mixing with the condensed milk. My friend Philip had ordered a Vietnamese iced coffee (cà phê sữa đá), so he received the same setup as me, plus an additional glass of ice.
We stirred our coffees once they had finished dripping to blend the coffee and condensed milk. Mine was all set to go. Philip poured his coffee into the ice-filled glass and presto!
We had to drive to the only Asian market in town to acquire some of those Vietnamese-style stainless steel coffee filters (Phin filters) so we could prepare our own recipe, even before this encounter.
We also received a taste of the Vietnamese coffee served at the eatery. Longevity is the brand of condensed milk. Philip stated that he has been using the same brand for quite some time!
The Trung Nguyen brand of Vietnamese ground coffee offers a deep, creamy flavor with only a smidgeon of hazelnut flavor.