Ho Chi Minh City | eating guide

Independent reviews and recommendations by Rusty Compass. No advertorial, no paid placements and no sponsored content.

Coffee - the best of Saigon's cafes

| 13 Aug 2017
  • 13 of 62

Map

Map
Coffee - the best of Saigon's cafes

Map
13 Aug 2017

Saigon's cafe scene is blossoming. This is a guide to specialty coffee in the city - the guys who put coffee front and centre.

Note: The information provided in this review was correct at time of publishing but may change. For final clarification please check with the relevant service

Bang Khuang Cafe

A long time sentimental favourite - we love the space here. The owner, Doan, hails from the coffee producing region around Ban Me Thuot in Vietnam's central highlands. Her coffee comes from the family farm. The flavour is closer to that of traditional Vietnamese coffee rather than the more international flavours of other specialty coffee houses.

Address: Upstairs - 9 Thai Van Lung, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City

 

Bang Khuang Cafe, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Bang Khuang Cafe, Saigon

 

Bang Khuang Cafe, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Bang Khuang Cafe, Saigon

 

Bosgaurus Coffee Roasters
 
Some of Saigon's most acclaimed baristas are on the team at Bosgaurus. And Hung the owner is viewed by many as one of the city's most knowledgeable coffee devotees. He roasts on site with two enormous roasters, and has all the toys for satisfying exacting coffee needs.

His space is a mellow retreat on the Saigon River around 10 minutes from downtown by cab in the Saigon Pearl Apartment complex.

Address: By the river - Saigon Pearl Apartments, Nguyen Huu Canh St, Binh Thanh District, Ho Chi Minh City

Bosgaurus Cafe, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Bosgaurus Cafe, Saigon

 

Bosgaurus Cafe, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Bosgaurus Cafe, Saigon

 

Les Monts Cafe, Saigon

Owned by one of Saigon’s major coffee exporters and importers, Les Monts is coming up with some outstanding brews from around the world. These guys supply many of the coffee houses around town. They know what they’re doing. It’s a friendly spot too - but it’s almost only coffee. They’re very focused. Located in the centre of town opposite Bitexco Tower.

Address: 51 Ham Nghi St, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City - opposite Bitexco Tower.

 

Les Monts Coffee, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Les Monts Coffee, Saigon

 

Les Monts Coffee, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Les Monts Coffee, Saigon
 

Ru Nam d'Or

If you like your coffee served in fancy surrounds by smartly dressed staff, Ru Nam d’Or will be your place. Even for those of more humble tastes, this place is an interesting stop, right by Saigon landmarks, the Post Office and Notre Dame Cathedral.

It’s Saigon's most expensive coffee (as far as we can work out) in a seriously fitted out colonial villa - an experience well beyond coffee.

The decor is a little over the top, but well done. The city's rich and famous gather here. And the bill at the end of it all would shock in any city. Expect to pay more than 100,000VND. But we reckon it's worth a look anyway.

Address: 3 Cong Xa Paris, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City - right by Notre Dame Cathedral

 

Ru Nam d'Or Cafe. Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Ru Nam d'Or Cafe. Saigon

 

Ru Nam d'Or Cafe. Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Ru Nam d'Or Cafe. Saigon

 

Shin Specialty Coffee

These guys get the award for investing the most effort in coffee hardware and theatrics. Many view Shin as the city's best practitioners of the specialty coffee thing, with a variety of international blends right in the heart of the city.

Address: 13 Nguyen Thiep St, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City

 

Shin Specialty Coffee, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Shin Specialty Coffee, Saigon

 

Shin Specialty Coffee, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Shin Specialty Coffee, Saigon

 

The Old Compass Cafe

We’re cheating here. This is Rusty Compass’s little home in Saigon. We love the place and the coffee. We’re not a specialty coffee house.  But we reckon we have some of the city's best coffee - and plenty of others agree. We're also very fond of our hidden little space. Check us out!

3rd Floor 63/11 Pasteur St, District 1 Ho Chi Minh City - down the alley right by Liberty Citypoint Hotel

 

Old Compass Cafe. Coffee and calm.
Photo: Mark Bowyer Old Compass Cafe. Coffee and calm.

 

Old Compass Cafe, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Old Compass Cafe, Saigon



The Workshop

These guys were among the first to get serious about coffee in Saigon and they’re still a standout. Great coffee in a cool heritage space drenched in natural light. The Workshop is located up a rickety staircase just off Dong Khoi St one block up from the river.

27 Ngo Duc Ke, (upstairs, just off Dong Khoi), Dist. 1, Ho Chi Minh City
 
 
The Workshop Coffee, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer The Workshop Coffee, Saigon
 
 
The Workshop Coffee, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer The Workshop Coffee, Saigon
 
 

Vietnam Coffee Republic

In an alley not far from the centre of town, Coffee Republic has a stable of loyal customers in the local and expat community. The coffee’s good and Phong's a great host. A good spot to get some work done too.

Address: Down the lanes, 8A 7B2 Thai Van Lung St, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
 
 
Phong - the man behind Coffee Republic, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Phong - the man behind Coffee Republic, Saigon
 
 
Coffee Republic, Saigon
Photo: Mark Bowyer Coffee Republic, Saigon
 
 
 
 
Specialty Coffee in Saigon - background
 
Most of Saigon’s specialty coffee houses are owned by people in the coffee business. For them, the cafe is more a labour of love than a commercial enterprise. They’re importers, exporters, roasters, wholesalers and distributors. It’s cool that they’re pouring their coffee expertise into little cafes - literally.
 
Vietnam’s coffee obsession dates back to French times. And Vietnam is now the world's second biggest coffee producer after Brazil. In recent years, local specialty cafes are taking the city's coffee habits in new directions. The places we've listed above are leading the way.
 
 
 
 
Disclosure
Rusty Compass listings are always independent. We recommend the places we think you should know about. That's it. We paid our way at all the places listed here - except The Old Compass Cafe - which is our place. No inducement of any kind was received for a place on this list.
Mark Bowyer
Mark Bowyer is the founder and publisher of Rusty Compass.
Support Rusty Compass
Rusty Compass is an independent travel guide. We’re focused on providing you with quality, unbiased, travel information. That means we don't receive payments in exchange for listings and mostly pay our own way. We’d like tourism to be a positive economic, environmental and cultural force too. If you’ve found our recommendations and guides useful, we’d be grateful if you can help us out. Make a financial contribution using the link below. Even small amounts make a difference. Spread the word about Rusty Compas too, and if you're in Saigon, pop in to The Old Compass Cafe and say hi. It’s our home in Vietnam. Thanks and travel well!

  • 13 of 62

What's On At Coffee - the best of Saigon's cafes

Goodfellas presents : Ten Toes Down 2

Lush Saigon

So 2 Ly Tu Trong, District. 1 | Map
Sat Sep 30, 2017
11PM
Gather around for the next episode of TEN TOES DOWN party series, the sketchiest party you... Read more

There are no comments yet.