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WHY THE WORLD IS WAKING UP TO VIETNAMESE COFFEE

The CNN Chanel has recently published an article, explaining “ why the world is waking up to Vietnamese coffee ”.  Although the COVID-19 epidemic causes panic among society, the article on the CNN channel makes Vietnamese readers feel proud of its very unique coffee culture.  That such captivating coffee culture is waking the world.


Rob Atthill said that he was “smitten” by Vietnamese coffee when he first visited this Southeast Asian country in 2004.

A pioneer of the Vietnamese street food scene in London, Atthill started importing coffee — grown by farmers in the country’s Central Highlands and roasted in Ho Chi Minh City — two years later. He said that the sales of his company Ca Phe VN have tripled in the last five years.

Vietnam is the world’s second-largest exporter of coffee, after Brazil. The International Coffee Organization reports that Vietnam exports around 25 million bags ( 60 kilograms (132 pounds)/ bag) of coffee a year, valued, on average, at $3 billion.

 

The drink is also trendy in Vietnam, where it was first introduced by French colonists in the 1850s.  Coffee is available in many hawkers on sidewalks, any coffee shops, or modern café with eye-catching decorations.

“It’s about getting together with friends,” says Will Frith, a coffee consultant who owns a co-roasting enterprise in Ho Chi Minh City.   He says coffee drinkers tend to gather in their favourite coffee shops, which operate as “a third space,” outside the home and workplace, and often form friendships with the owners and staff.

The Vietnamese style of making coffee is also impressive.  Coffee grounds are mixed with hot water into the filter. After putting the filter with coffee inside on a small cup and people like waiting for every drop separated from used coffee grounds.  Usually, people prefer to drink coffee with sugar or milk.

Sahra Nguyen launched Nguyen Coffee Supply in Brooklyn, New York, in 2018.  She buys coffee beans from a family-run farm in Vietnam’s Central Highlands and roasts them herself. Recently, Sahra Nguyen  Recently, Sahra Nguyen added Grit — a 100% robusta product — to her range.  Overall, more than three-quarters of testers preferred Grit. The response “blew me away,” says Nguyen. The reaction of testers proved that Vietnamese coffee is so captivating.

Vietnamese coffee has also returned to its roots in France. Husband-and-wife team, Nam and Linh Nguyen, opened Hanoi Corner in central Paris two years ago.  Along with coffee, the café offers Vietnamese tea, cakes and streetfood staples.

Vietnam has “a unique coffee culture”, says Nam Nguyen, an award-winning barista.  Also, young business people and processors on coffee are becoming more and more plentiful.  This drink is prepared in many more styles and richer in flavour.  Along with coffee with sugar or milk,   you can have a lot more added to your coffee. Here are some of the popular concoctions on offer:

Salt coffee.  This culinary trick, developed in the historic city of Hue,  brings out the sweetness of coffee by adding salt whipped with fermented milk.

Egg coffee. Invented in Hanoi, this dessert-like recipe adds a topping of egg yolks, frothed with condensed milk, to a coffee base.

Also, there are coconut coffee, fruit coffee (combined with banana or avocado to produce a smoothie), yoghurt coffee.

Young entrepreneurs develop Vietnamese coffee waking up the world.  A new generation of entrepreneurs is focusing on quality. Accordingly, they pay attention to terroir, discuss cultivation methods with farmers and adopt best practice when it comes to processing techniques.  Traders, baristas and coffee shop owners all over the world will join with farmers to make Vietnamese coffee better.

Thu Ha (KTĐT)