The Best Coffee Shops In Hoi An
Many people who visit Vietnam aren’t aware of the country’s reputation as a global heavyweight of coffee production. In 2017, Vietnam produced 1,650,000 metric tons of brown beans, second only to Brazil in terms of sheer volume. Coffee is everywhere in Vietnam, from big, bustling coffee shops to small Mom ‘n Pop operations. Hoi An is no exception, with caffeinated refreshments available from almost every nook and cranny in the city. We have taken it upon ourselves to hunt down the finest options, narrowing down each of the Best Coffee Shops in Hoi An to make your coffee consumption as fluid as possible.
One thing to consider is that while the Vietnamese are prone to grabbing a steaming cup of coffee to help them fire up first thing in the morning, many also drink coffee at night. Coffee shops in Hoi An make a pretty good trade in the morning, but when the sun goes down, is when they come alive. Around the time Western tourists are heading to their favourite bars and pubs, the local cool kids are found hanging out in coffee shops, music blaring, and cà phê sữa flowing.
It’s not only coffee, though. Avocado banana coffee smoothies (sinh tố cà phê), sapodilla coffee shakes (sinh tố cà phê sapoche), mango lassi and, of course, iced tea can also be seen gracing the tables of Hoi An’s hip coffee shops. And the way they do their coffee… Well, it’s a whole other experience. The espresso culture in Australia and Europe and the filter coffee culture of North America are a far cry from what’s going on here.
Best Western Coffee
Most western coffee is made from Arabica beans, which have a more delicate and refined flavour. But here, Vietnamese robusta beans are roasted dark, usually with a medium to coarse grind. Then the ground coffee is lightly tamped into a kind of cup/drip filter. This filter cup or phin ca phe, is placed directly on top of the cup and boiling water poured on top of the coffee grounds. It then slowly drips into the cup until the water has drained through, and you have your shot of coffee.
Coffee shops in Hoi An serve some seriously powerful stuff. The lower temperatures and the lower pressures used to extract the coffee makes for a stronger, more robust, less bitter, and less acidic shot of coffee than you would get from an espresso machine. A lot of Vietnamese coffees have a kind of smoked vanilla flavour that can be quite strong sometimes. In the cheaper coffee blends, it can be a little overpowering. But in the nicer ones, it provides a lovely complexity and long flavour.
Every local coffee shop in Hoi An serves its own particular blend. So don’t be put off if you find one cafe that isn’t to your liking. Sugar and sweetened milk products are often used to balance out the intensity and powerful flavours of Vietnamese coffee. Mostly coffee is served iced, but you can get it served hot as well. As well as the Vietnamese types, most places will also serve Americano. Which means hot water is added to make a kind of long black, much less intense than the straight ca phe đen.
How to Order Vietnamese Coffee the Way You Like It
Cà phê sữa đá: Milk coffee with ice. The most famous of the Vietnamese coffees. A large shot of black coffee over ice with a layer of sweetened condensed milk on the bottom of the glass. If there’s too much condensed milk, it will turn into a kind of super sweet syrupy concoction. If the balance is right, though, it has a satisfying body and a kind of nutty flavour that balances out the brutal nature of the dark roasted robusta bean extraction.
For milk coffee ask for cà phê sữa, served hot or cà phê đen for black coffee. Iced black coffee is cà phê đen da. While cà phê sữa tươi is a Vietnamese latte (rare in very local coffee shops)
Yoghurt coffee is cà phê sữa chua The light acidity of the yoghurt brings out a whole different flavour in the coffee. Even if you think it’s not your thing, give it a go! At the very least, it will be an interesting experience.
Cà phê trứng is egg coffee. More like a heavily caffeinated egg custard than a light beverage. Egg yolks are whipped through the black coffee, sometimes in a hot water bath, until a smooth, crème anglaise texture is achieved.
Adjusting to Your Taste
If you want a milder, less punchy coffee (more similar to what you drink at home), order cà phê bạc xỉu (pronounced “ca fe bac siu,” the “x” is pronounced as an “s”). This means coffee with lots of extra milk. Or ask for an Americano, hot or iced. A watered-down version of the strong coffee shot. A bit less confronting first thing in the morning.
Be aware when ordering coffee at predominantly Vietnamese establishments that, most likely, it will be served with UHT or condensed milk. However these days if you go to a Western style coffee shop you’ll get fresh Da Lat milk. Soy milk is widely available, and sometimes bean milk, nut milk, and even lotus seed milk can be found without too much difficulty. Ask your friendly coffee baristas if they have any of these available. Or you can buy them from most of the mini-marts in Hoi An and take them to the coffee shop yourself.
Where to Find the Best Coffee Shops in Hoi An
Faifo Coffee – Best View
Among the bright yellow brickwork of the Old Town lies the quaint and quirky Faifo coffee house. This establishment is a little on the pricier side with traditional Vietnamese coffees priced at 39,000 – 45,000 VND (1.70 – 1.90 USD) a pop. But what Faifo offers in return is great house-roasted coffee and a fantastic rooftop on which to enjoy it.
The Famous Rooftop Overlooking Hoi An
After placing your order with the baristas on the ground floor, head towards the mahogany stairs at the back of the shop. To reach their famous rooftop, climb three narrow flights and enjoy the feeling of ascending a secret treehouse. Once you reach the third floor, you find yourself at the same height at the iconic lanterns that were previously swinging overhead as you strolled the streets. Seated among the terracotta roof tiles, this sundeck patio offers a unique bird’s eye view of the Old Town. During spells of sunnier climes, keen Instagrammers can be found flocking to the patio for an iced latte and a photoshoot.
For those who aren’t as fussed about rooftops and instead are searching for a place to take solace from the sun and enjoy a cold beverage, the cosy second floor is equally as enticing. Shaded and well ventilated, this area is surrounded by vintage paperbacks and comfortable gothic style seating. Faifo take their role as coffee connoisseurs seriously, and this is evident everywhere; from the sharp uniforms sported by their baristas, to the extensive menu. Exotic and international, Faifo coffees range from lattes and cappuccinos, 49,000 – 55,000 VND (2.10 – 2.35 USD) to espresso con panna, 52,000 VND (2.25 USD)
Hidden Hint: As temperatures on the rooftop can get pretty high, head to Faifo early or later in the day for more manageable sun – and better lighting for your photos!
The Espresso Station – Best Unique Coffee
Most coffee shops in Hoi An like to hone and serve traditional coffee, be it Vietnamese, Italian or Australian, but many of the menus reflect much of the same. However, just off of the busy Tran Hung Dao Street and up a narrow alley lies an innovative gem, The Espresso Station. The terrace is small and inviting, with a number of picnic style benches and stools to settle on. Mustard walls with cobalt blue accents decorate the space, tables upcycled from salvaged wood provide inviting seating.
Hidden Hint: Unlike the majority of Hoi An’s coffee shops, The Espresso Station closes relatively early, with the end of business ringing in at just 5 p.m. Head here earlier in the day to savour the full experience.
Although traditional coffee can be found on their menu, from 50,000 VND (2.15 USD) – make no mistake, these are damn good – it’s their house specials that really set them apart from the crowd. The awe-inspiring ice cube latte, 65,000 USD (2.80 USD) is one notable talking point. A handful of espresso ice cubes, topped with cocoa powder, served in a cortado glass with a side of steamed milk. Once poured over the ice, the milk creates a creamy iced latte, rich and flavoursome, a real spectacle! The dark soul latte 65,000 (2.80 USD) is equally as fabulous in its pageantry, thanks to the addition of activated charcoal. If caffeine isn’t your thing they even have decaffeinated beetroot or blueberry lattes.
Cafe Hội An 1975 – Best Unique Coffee Shop
This retro-crazy coffee shop is unique for a multitude of reasons. Open 24 hours a day, the nostalgia inducing enclave acknowledges Vietnam’s past. Decked out from wall to wall with war-time memorabilia and propaganda. It stands as a time capsule taking customers back to a poignant time in Vietnam’s history; the year 1975. With retro decor comprised of old school telephone handsets, vintage record players and analog television sets, this cafe’s agenda is clear: transport guests back to simpler times.
Hidden Hint: Cafe Hội An 1975 is unapologetically Vietnamese, making this a condensed milk only establishment. If you’re looking for “regular” Western milk with your coffee, you won’t find it here.
In keeping with its preservation of history, Cafe Hội An 1975 serves up timeless Vietnamese staples such as cà phê sữa Sài Gòn, 22,000 VND (0.95 USD) and cà phê đen, 12,000 VND (0.50 USD) However, the creative team behind this experiential cafe are wise to the popular modern day classics like peach iced tea from 26,000 VND (1.15 USD), Oreo iced coffee, 35,000 (1.50 USD) and matcha latte, 25,000 VND (1.10 USD).
Review by Maggie Kennedy
Sound of Silence Coffee Shop – Best Hoi An Beach Coffee
Sound of Silence is surprisingly quiet considering its beachside location and enviable views. When you drive past, it’s hard to imagine that hidden among the palm trees is an inviting and sizable patio overlooking the tranquil ocean. This chill-out spot invites you to enjoy your coffee with a side of cooling sea air, in total uninterrupted peace. They even have a selection of beach huts with power outlets, making it a serene work space too.
Hidden Hint: Go down the steps to reach the sandy beach and capture an idyllic Instagram shot on the iconic blue swing
Made in-house the cold brew coffee is a treat for the palate, available for 45,000 VND (1.95 USD) and Americano coffee costs just 35,000 VND (1.50 USD). For those with a particular sweet tooth, the egg coffee is a must, 65,000 VND (2.80 USD).
Sua Café – Best Local Coffee
Not only does Sua Cafe deliver incredible views of rice paddies, but their kind-hearted, handicapable staff provide first-class service to every guest. With a reasonably priced menu, an on-site roastery, and even cooking classes and tastings, there is an abundance of opportunities available for guests looking to make the most of their visit to Hoi An.
The atmosphere is elegant, but comfortable, with traditional lanterns and an open-style floor plan. Choose to relax either on the outdoor patio, at a family-style table, or couch, making Sua Cafe the perfect destination to catch up with friends new and old, or to get some work done.
Sua Café serves up a traditional Vietnamese Coffee for just 12,000 VND (0.50 USD). Or try a cool, refreshing Coconut Coffee for 25,000 VND (1 USD). Their Egg Coffee goes for 40,000 VND (1.75 USD) and their Hot Drip for 50,000 VND (2.15 USD). For those who’d like something other than coffee, fopt for a locally sourced natural smoothie, such as their Mango Smoothie for 30,000 VND (1.30 USD) or their Peach Ginger Mango Smoothie for 35,000 VND (1.50 USD), which are both energizing and delicious. You can feel good about contributing to Sua Coffee, as a portion of their proceeds goes towards local charities.
Reaching Out Teahouse – Best For Giving Back
Social enterprise Reaching Out originally started out as an arts and crafts shop in 2000. They have since expanded into an artfully designed tea and coffee shop. With organic, locally sourced traditional Vietnamese coffee starting at 57,000 VND (2.45 USD) a cup, this charming coffee shop is a worthwhile pit stop. Best known for empowering those with disabilities, Reaching Out finds individuals roles within their business based on the skills they demonstrate. The team consists of speech and hearing impaired staff who provide welcoming, high-end service for early risers through to evening coffee drinking crowds.
A Quiet Place
Eager to promote the notion of a peaceful place to enjoy a tranquil cup of coffee, this spot is more appropriate for individuals or groups happy to hang out quietly. Blocks of wood displaying Vietnamese phrases and words are found around the coffee shop, help customers communicate with the staff.
Opt for a seat in the front room and people-watch members of the public strolling the streets of the Old Town or head for the small courtyard out back, complete with peaceful lily pond. The teas might be good but the coffees on offer are some of the finest in the Old Town. If you’re in the mood for something a bit different, the yin-yang Hoi An ancient blend, a blend of sundried Dalat bourbon arabica beans and moka flavours, is just what you didn’t know you were looking for! 57,000 VND (2.45 USD) Another novelty worth trying, is the Vietnamese coffee tasting set, 135,000 VND (5.85 USD). Choose from three coffee bean combinations and enjoy a sample flight of each, paired with a miniature sweet treat to enhance your chosen flavours.
U Café – Best Eco-Friendly Coffee Shop in Hoi An
Address: 120 Huyen Tran Cong Chua – Hours: Daily 8 a.m. – 9 p.m. (Closed on Tuesdays) Price of a traditional Vietnamese coffee: 25,000VND (1 USD), or 30,000VND (1.30 USD)
U Café overlooks the picturesque Thu Bon River and its many fishing vessels. An eco-friendly establishment distributing full-bodied coffee classics, this tranquil and easy-going cafe is a wonderful spot for an afternoon coffee. U Café is based within a homely four-storey building, constructed to face south to make use of ample sunlight. Spacious doorways and windows allow fresh air to breeze through. The whole space is designed to enhance natural light and reduce electrical usage.
The team of green-fingered, eco-conscious enthusiasts running the show here are headed up by humanitarian Reiko Usuda. The water used in the cafe goes through an eco-biological sewer system. Then filtered and directed into the many lily ponds in the building, before flowing into the river system. The U Café team also works with many social help groups, providing books for students and assisting with community clean ups.
Hard work is not only evident in the social and ecological incentives enacted by U Café, but also in their efforts to fuse Japanese and Vietnamese flavours. A traditional black coffee is 25,000VND (1 USD), or 30,000VND (1.30 USD) with condensed milk. They also serve an Ethiopian inspired “Paxiu” – which is less coffee and extra condensed milk, for 35,000VND (1.50 USD).
Phin Coffee – Best Coffee
Now with two locations, local crowd pleaser Phin Coffee continues to be one of the most popular caffeine merchants in the city. The first, flagship location on Tran Phu boasts a luscious open courtyard, kitted out with small wooden benches and tropical plants. A second location recently opened, and in true Hoi An style can be found down a narrow alleyway a one minute walk from the landmark 18th Century Japanese Bridge.
Watch the Baristas in Action
On the face of it, Phin Coffee’s menu appears to offer a similar selection of beverages to the rest of the Old Town. But the special factor here is the high-end knowledge of each barista. From the careful curation of roasting the beans to the final, grand presentation, Phin Coffee is an art form. In the original location, customers are able to peep through a large window framing the baristas, to observe them as they chase perfection with every cup brewed. If you’re curious about any step in the process, the staff are always more than happy to educate you as they go.
Hidden Hint: The back of the Phin Coffee menu has important information regarding the different blends available in store, a “grinding size guide”, and even a list of bespoke coffee classes hosted by the business.
A Vietnamese drip coffee costs 50,000 VND (2.15 USD), the same price as an egg coffee or inventive iced blended beverages such as coconut coffee or peanut butter coffee! Fresh fruit juices, 45,000 VND (1.90 USD) and Western coffees like cappuccino and Americano are also available for 45,000 VND (1.90 USD). Other naughty creations include “coffee cocktails,” like the “party time”. Consisting of cold brew, lime, sugar syrup and a shot of vodka or gin, 80,000 VND (3.45 USD). Or the “pick-me-up”, coconut egg coffee topped up with a drop of rum 70,000 VND (3 USD).
Mia Coffee – Best Expat Choice
Just east of Hoi An’s Old Town, Mia Coffee is an ever-popular expat coffee shop. You may not think much of it at first glance, but don’t let the generic facade fool you. Set on a corner in a traditional house covered in flowering plants. It’s a great place to get away from the crowds and enjoy a coffee on the shaded terrace.
Order at the counter on the main floor and choose from the many seating options available. There are a couple of tables inside on the first floor and a terrace surrounding the house. A portion of the upper level of the house is air-conditioned, so you can escape the heat and get some work done. This floor also has a second terrace, with free filtered water provided, along with buzzers on each table for quick service.
While they do have Vietnamese coffee on their menu, what keeps people coming back is the consistency of their Italian varieties and their selection of home-made baked goods. An Americano or an espresso cost you 28,000 VND (1.20 USD). Vietnamese black or brown coffee is 30,000 VND (1.30 USD). In true Western style, Mia Coffee has frappuccinos for their expat customers, 40,000VND (1.70 USD), with flavours including vanilla, chocolate, hazelnut and caramel to choose from.
Cavalry Coffee – Best Unknown Coffee Shop in Hoi An
As its following continues to grow, Cavalry Coffee aims to brew amazing coffee for a reasonable price while also acting as a retailer of coffee appliances and equipment.
Currently, the company has two locations in the city. East of Hoi An’s Old Town is their small and humble coffee shop. It showcases their products and a few smaller pieces of brewing equipment. It’s a great no-frills spot to sit down and appreciate the coffee.
Cavalry’s main location is much further away, just over Cua Dai Bridge. Larger and more industrial than its Old Town younger sibling, mostly frequented by locals due to the location. Staff speak limited English but that doesn’t stop them from delivering fantastic service. In the back of the shop is a covered courtyard with additional seating. This is also where all the coffee production takes place.
Straight forward coffees such as Americano, espresso or traditional Vietnamese coffee set you back 30,000 VND (1.30 USD). While all creamy milk based beverages, mocha, latte or cappuccino, cost 40,000 VND (1.70 USD).
Hoi An Roastery – Best Coffee Shop Chain
Highlands Coffee has been the most visible coffee shop chain in Vietnam over the last 15 years. However new kid on the block, Hoi An Roastery, has been making an impact at a blistering speed. It now has seven coffee shops in Hoi An; each cafe with its own unique vibe. All locations have a consistently great coffee menu and beans individually sourced from Da Lat. The locations lie mainly within the Old Town, in some of the most beautiful converted houses in town.
Hoi An Roastery offers all sorts of hot and cold drinks from Italian style espresso coffee to Vietnamese style steeping coffee. A single espresso costs you 40,000VND (1.70 USD), and cappuccino, latte or flat white are priced at 55,000VND (2.35 USD). Pour-over coffee costs 55,000 (2.35 USD) and a French press (2 cups) is 80,000 (3.45 USD). Sweet and silky egg coffee is 59,000VND (2.50 USD). Old faithful, cà phê sữa, can be purchased for 59,000 (2.50 USD).
Dingo Deli – Best All in One Coffee Shop
This one-of-a-kind delicatessen in the heart of Hoi An is popular for its unhurried atmosphere, polite service and great food. They also take their caffeine very seriously. Dingo was the first establishment to serve Lavazza coffee in Hoi An, back in 2011. They have been brewing terrific coffee ever since. From unlimited American filter coffee, 40,000 VND (1.75 USD) to local cà phê sua da for 35,000 VND (1.50 USD). Outstanding baked goods, from 35,000 VND (1.50 USD). Imaginative sandwiches, 75,000 (3.25 USD) and Aussie meat pies, 110,000 VND (4.75 USD) add to the all-around appeal of this cafe.
Hidden Hint: Every weekend Dingo Deli bake soft and spongy British style scones, complete with cream and strawberry jam! The scones come with a cup of coffee, for 35,000 VND (1.50 USD).
Entering Dingo Deli you find yourself in a pampering, crisp and clear AC oasis. One of their 38 staff members offers you an ice cold towel to cool off from the heat. Then they show you how to place your order, using the pencil and paper menu. For a comfortable air-conditioned lounge, a quiet working space or a family-friendly space with a play area to enjoy your morning coffee, Dingo Deli has you covered. Quality is always prioritised and portions are extremely generous.
Now you have an in-depth and expert knowledge on everything coffee. As well as some of the best and most interesting coffee shops to find it in Hoi An. Whether you’re looking for an excellent Italian coffee, a traditional phin coffee with condensed milk, or something a bit more unique—Hoi An’s coffee shops have it all.