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What is Vietnamese (iced) coffee and what makes it different?

Vietnamese iced coffee is a very popular style of coffee that originated in Vietnam. Although coffee in and from Vietnam has been around for some time(mid 1800’s), only recently has this particular style of coffee been making waves in the west. 

What makes Vietnamese coffee distinct from the west, is it uses Robusta beans instead of the more commonly consumed Arabica. Robusta beans are earthier, have more caffeine than its western counterpart, are less acidic, and have a nuttier flavour with hints of chocolate.

Another distinguishing ingredient of Vietnamese coffee is the addition of condensed milk. The decadent milk brings a level of sweetness that when paired with bitterness of the robusta coffee is a match-made in culinary heaven. The combination of ingredients plays well with each other and gives Vietnamese coffee its signature flavour that everyone seems to enjoy. 

Lastly, since Vietnam has a warmer climate, the coffee is often served with ice, thus completing the very popular Vietnamese iced coffee (of course, ice is optional and the drink can always be served hot).


How is Vietnamese coffee made?

Vietnamese coffee is traditionally made using a type of a drip method using a Vietnamese phin filter(link to filters). Using coarse coffee grounds in the phin for the ideal brew and drip time. The coffee drips from the phin into a cup with condensed milk already added. Once the drip process has completed, ice can be added or served hot.