Especially in third-wave coffee shops, Vietnamese coffee is gaining a lot of attention for both the traditional style of brewing coffee and the unique coffee beans grown in the country.
The traditional method of brewing with a phin is mainly associated with highly concentrated and caffeine-rich brews, but this is not always the case with modern Vietnamese specialty brews.
So what exactly is the caffeine content of Vietnamese coffee? The answer is not as simple as you think!
Robusta Coffee is Introduced to Vietnam
Coffee was first introduced to Vietnam during colonial times. The French quickly realized that the much more temperate mountain interior of Vietnam was perfect for growing coffee.
The French colonials decided on the hardy Robusta variety of coffee for these first plantations. Robusta coffee, as the name suggests, can withstand more extreme conditions than Arabica coffee shrubs.
Of course, other varieties such as Arabica were also present, but in much smaller numbers, and the predominance of Robusta beans shaped the coffee industry in Vietnam.
Robusta beans’ large size and caffeine content made Vietnamese coffee perfect for industrial processing into caffeine concentrates or instant coffee.
In fact, Robusta beans can have up to twice the amount of caffeine when compared to an Arabic bean! This high caffeine content also led to the development of a unique brewing method in Vietnam.
A Unique Brewing Method
Due to conditions in colonial times when fresh milk and espresso machines were not widely available, a unique pour-over method became the go-to way to brew coffee in Vietnam.
An immersion method like the French press would not have been suitable for the high caffeine Robusta beans, so the phin was developed.
This small aluminum filter sits on top of your cup and, when filled with water, brews a single-serve of strong, black coffee. Traditionally, this is often mixed with condensed milk but can be consumed black.
Using a pour-over method like this made the best of the beans available, and the strong brews it created are partly why Vietnamese coffee has a reputation for being high in caffeine.
While this reputation may have been deserved in the past, modern growers and roasters like Belvico are looking to change the perception of Vietnamese coffee.
Quality Vietnamese Arabica From Belvico
Belvico is one company looking to change perceptions about Vietnamese coffee. Although they work with farmers of traditional Robusta coffee, they have also begun to promote Arabica coffee in the Central Highlands of Vietnam.
With approximately half the caffeine of Robusta, these beans are typically only lightly roasted, which allows more complex flavors to come to the fore.
Prized in third-wave coffee shops, Arabica beans are probably what you drink daily. Most of the prized coffee regions, such as Brazil and Ethiopia, are known for Arabica beans, and Belvico wants to place Vietnam among them.
Vietnamese Arabica from Belvico has caffeine content similar to other global varieties and will surprise you with its unique flavor profile.
Along with this new high-quality Arabica offering, Belvico has also been working hard to rehabilitate the reputation of Vietnamese Robusta beans.
High-Quality Vietnamese Robusta Beans From Belvico
Robusta beans have not got a great reputation. With their higher caffeine content comes a more pronounced bitter taste that can become dominant if the beans are not treated carefully during processing and roasting.
Traditionally, Vietnamese Robusta has been heavily roasted for industrial purposes or local consumption. This hides much of the complex flavors and disguises low-quality beans, giving farmers little incentive to prioritize quality.
Working directly with farmers in the Central Highlands, Belvico has begun producing high-quality Robusta and roasting it to perfection in their facility to bring out the deep nuttiness of this unique coffee.
If you want a big hit of caffeine while still enjoying a tasty cup of coffee, then the premium Robusta coffee from Belvico is for you!
Buy the Best Vietnamese Coffee
If you want to try the best coffee Vietnam has to offer, then look no further than the premium Arabica and Robusta coffee from Belvico.
By working directly with farmers in Vietnam's Central Highlands and controlling every step of the process from the field to your cup, they can provide a high quality, flavorsome cup of coffee every time.
Take a look at the website and choose a blend that suits your preference, and get tasting!