For people who’s never tried egg coffee before, it might sound a bit bizarre. But for those who’ve had it, they know how sweet and delicious it is. Egg coffee is a Vietnamese specialty consisting of egg yolks, sugar, condensed milk and robusta coffee. It’s one of the most popular drinks you can get in Vietnam and is the perfect drink to enjoy with your friends.
History of egg coffee
It all started back in 1946, when Mr Nguyen Van Giang wanted to make coffee but there was a serious shortage of milk. To fix this problem, Mr Nguyen replaced milk with egg yolks and invented what we now know as egg coffee. After working in the hotel industry, he decided that it was time to open up his own shop and see if the egg coffee would be a hit. It was. Today, Cafe Giang, which is managed by his son in Hanoi’s Old Quarter, is one of the most popular cafés in Hanoi.
How is it made?
The coffee is firstly brewed in a Vietnamese style drip filter. Once it’s brewed and done, you add the thoroughly-whisked mixture of the egg yolk along with the other ingredients that’s been whisked with the egg. Although it may sound easy, it’s actually quite difficult to make. The secret lies in the whisk. If you whisk too much, you’ll miss the frothy key component. If you whisk too little, you’ll be literally drinking coffee with egg yolk. Yeah, doesn’t sound like something we actually want to drink. It’s all about getting that perfect smooth mixture that makes the egg coffee magical.
Where can I find egg coffee in Hanoi?
Almost every coffee shop in Hanoi sells egg coffee, but there are some places you need to go if you want to try high quality egg coffee. It would be foolish not to mention Giang Café again as the number one place to go for egg coffee. Not only is it the original place, it’s also incredibly delicious. You can’t go wrong with egg coffee if you go there. One cup costs 25,000 VND, which is less than one dollar. It’s a win-win.
While Giang Café is owned by the founder’s son these days, the daughter of Nguyen Van Giang also has her own café where she makes her egg coffee. Whether it’s the brother or the sister who makes the best egg coffee is entirely up to you, but it’s definitely worth visiting Café Dinh. Besides serving the regular egg coffee, Ms. Bich has created her own little twist to the egg coffee as well: cocoa.
Café Pho Co
It might be one of the more expensive coffee shops, but it overlooks Hoan Kiem lake and is one of the most beautiful cafés in the city. What makes it even more charming is that it’s a bit of a hidden café. Once you’ve found the café, you can sit in their rooftop while sipping on a fabulous egg coffee. It’s worth splurging a bit for that view – and the coffee, of course!
If you’re looking for a more local, authentic place, go to Cafe Lam, one of the oldest cafés in Hanoi. Besides getting a cup of egg coffee, you can also get Vietnamese iced coffee. Do as the locals and sit in a small plastic chair outside on the street, watch people go about their life and enjoy one of the best coffees in the world.
This cute little café in Hoan Kiem serves up some awesome egg coffee along with other goodies such as coconut coffee, smoothies, regular drip coffee and more. It’s a small coffee shop but gets really busy because of its good reputation. If you’re in a rush, you might want to skip it, but if you have time to wait for 10 minutes or so, it’s worth the wait to get your hands on one of Hanoi’s best egg coffees. The Old Quarter has a lot of little holes in the wall food stalls and cafés and Cho Coffee is one of the best ones. Don’t miss out on this café when you’re in town. Even if egg coffee isn’t your thing, there’s plenty of other drinks to order.
Don’t forget to apply for your Vietnam visa before you intend on arriving to Vietnam. There are three options depending on where you come from. The most preferred options are the online visas. The first one is the Visa on Arrival and the other is the E-Visa. The latter is only available for certain countries though and it’s a 30 days, single-entry visa. You can’t extend your visa if you have an E-Visa so if you’re unsure about how many days you want to stay in Vietnam, it’s recommended to go with the Visa on Arrival. The third option is to go via the Vietnamese Embassy or Consulate. This is recommended if you intend on arriving to Vietnam by land. Please note that the online visas are only valid if you intend on arriving to Vietnam by air.