The best Hoi An cafes and tea houses provide much-needed retreats from the heat in the sultry Central Vietnam town of Hoi An, as much as they do opportunities for sipping coffee in its many forms, from traditional to third wave, and experiencing elegant tea services in tranquil surrounds.
The best Hoi An cafes and tea houses for sipping tea and coffee include everything from third wave cafes Mia Coffee and Hoi An Roastery for flat whites, cold brews to tea houses such as Reaching Out and Cocobana, where you can quench your thirst with iced or cold teas in tranquil restorative surrounds.
Central Vietnam’s UNESCO World Heritage-listed Hoi An may be better known for its ancient houses, Chinese temples, Buddhist pagodas, and small museums – along with its delicious Vietnamese street food, including Hoi An specialties that originated in the region.
The steamy riverside port town is also a superb spot for sipping everything from organic black teas from the highlands to Vietnam’s traditional dark-roasted robusta coffee (cà phê in Vietnamese) from Vietnam’s coffee growing area around Dalat and third wave coffees brewed from imported single origin Arabica – along with fresh juices, shakes and smoothies (sinh tố) blended from tropical ingredients such as avocado and sapodilla.
While I haven’t included Hoi An Central Market, below, it’s also a top spot for sipping something while slurping bowls of local noodles such as cao lau and mi Quang. This is the place to try those fantastic fruit smoothies and Vietnam’s traditional nutty Robusta-based coffees with syrupy condensed milk.
The most popular Vietnamese coffees are cà phê sữa đá (iced coffee with milk), cà phê sữa (hot coffee with milk), cà phê đen (hot black coffee), and cà phê đen da (iced black coffee). At local cafés outside the market, you might also come across cà phê sữa tươi (latte), cà phê sữa chua (yoghurt coffee) and cà phê trứng (egg coffee).
The markets are also where you’ll find a phin cà phê, the stainless steel Vietnamese single-cup coffee filter in which local cafés make your cà phê. Popped on top of your cup, boiling water is poured onto the coffee grounds and left to slowly drip into the cup. Expect to pay as little as a dollar or two. You’ll be able to buy quality beans and ground coffee at some of the Hoi An cafés, below.
These are our picks of the best Hoi An cafes and tea houses for when you need to retreat from the heat. Let us know your favourites in the comments below.
Best Hoi An Cafes and Tea Houses When You Need to Retreat from the Heat
Reaching Out Tea House
Sink into a low-slung chair at atmospheric Reaching Out Tea House and you can enjoy the cool breezes that pass through the big round windows overlooking the street through to the delightful little courtyard out back, both of which make for a wonderful retreat from the heat. Staff at this serene social enterprise, which is easily one of the best Hoi An cafes and tea houses, are speech and hearing impaired so once you’ve decided what to order from the extensive menu of Vietnamese teas and coffees, you write down your order with the pen and paper provided and sit back to wait for your elegant traditional tea service. Try the Vietnamese Tea Tasting Set, which enables you to select three varieties, including green tea, oolong, jasmine or an organic herbal tea, and comes with a plate of cookies. The Cookie Sampler is also worth trying and includes a selection of handmade cookies and snacks for two. If you you’re your tea pot so much you want to take it home, you can – there’s a beautiful selection of tea sets and ceramics for sale here and at the Reaching Out Arts and Crafts workshop down the alleyway, where you’ll also discover beautiful jewellery, textiles and handicrafts made on site by Vietnamese artisans with disabilities.
Reaching Out Tea House, 131 Tran Phu, Hoi An. Open Mon-Fri 8.30am-9pm, Sat & Sun 10am-8.30pm.
Warm and welcoming Mia Coffee might have been Hoi An’s first third wave café when it opened soon after we settled into Hoi An’s charming ancient quarter in 2013. An instant success with Hoi An expats and Vietnamese tourists from Saigon, where a sophisticated third wave coffee culture had begun to flourish, it quickly became the best spot for a ristretto in town and is perhaps the best of the best Hoi An cafes and tea houses. Somewhat Australian in style – you order at the counter, there are buzzers on the tables, filtered water is free – the espresso machine was Italian (Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II) and beans global, roasted everywhere from Brooklyn (Toby’s Estate) to Singapore (Liberty), picked up on owner Le Quang Huy’s sourcing trips. These days, he roasts and grinds Vietnamese Yellow Bourbon Arabica Beans from Vietnam’s coffee capital, Dalat daily on site for his own Mia Coffee blend, available to purchase in the café and now has a second branch in Danang. Try to snag a seat at a table on the front balcony.
Mia Coffee, 20 Phan Boi Chau, Hoi An. Open 6am-5pm daily.
Serious coffee lovers will want to seek out Phin Coffee, which is located in a shady courtyard next door to Secret Garden, tucked down an alley off a lane off Tran Phu. Along with Mia Coffee and the Sound of Silence, Phin Coffee is arguably one of the best of the best Hoi An cafes and tea houses when it comes to the quality of the coffee and the skill of the baristas. The beans are sourced from small coffee growers in Vietnam and beyond, and freshly roasted in the family’s own roastery. Along with the usual range of third wave coffees, from pour-overs to French press, you’ll find quirky house specialties such as a peanut butter ice blended coffee, a creamy coconut egg coffee, and a coffee with coconut ice-cream and condensed milk. The icy cold brew with lime hits the spot on a hot day. If you’re really serious about your coffee, you’ll want to sign up for Phin’s Vietnam Coffee Tasting Experience with coffee expert Bui, who covers everything from traditional to speciality coffee, and the importance of coffee in Vietnamese culture.
Phin Coffee, 132/7 Tran Phu, Hoi An. Open 8am-5.30pm daily.
The Sound of Silence
The sound you’ll hear as you sip your coffee is that of the ocean and the waves lapping the shore. There must be few better located cafes in Hoi An than this laidback spot located smack-bang on An Bang beach, just a 15-minute drive from Hoi An ancient town. On the ground floor of an airy brick and timber house that is home to lovely Tan Thanh Garden Homestay, The Sound of Silence vies with Mia and Phin as one of the best Hoi An cafes and tea houses, although it wins out for its setting in a tropical garden overlooking the sea. While the picnic tables outside are alluring, the interior is atmospheric and the breezes cooling on a balmy day. The artisanal coffee is outstanding, with a range of blends on offer, including the Sound of Silence’s own freshly roasted beans sourced everywhere from Laos to Ethiopia. There’s a short menu of breakfast items, the favourite of which are the French crepes with fruit.
The Sound of Silence, 40 Nguyen Phan Vinh St, Cam An, Hoi An. Open 7am-4.30pm daily.
Cocobana Tea Rooms
Set in a handsome two-storey merchants house that has been opened right up to channel the river and sea breezes through the airy space to the shaded central garden courtyard, Cocobana is a lovely spot to linger for a while and is another of the best Hoi An cafes and tea houses. While various coffees are on offer, the specialty is tea, and if owner Nguyen Wee is around he’s happy to introduce you to the 25 or so teas you can choose from, including teas made from flowers, herbs and fruits, such as passionfruit, peach, lychee, and kumquat, black leaf teas, and pandan tea. There’s a daily brewed tea for tasting and a range of boutique tea labels from across Vietnam (all with gorgeous packaging) that you can buy, along with other delightful gifts, from ceramic cups to local crafts. Upstairs is a gallery you can browse, there are crafts workshops you can return for if you fancy learning how to make handmade paper, and you can sink back into a sofa in the fragrant garden and enjoy a herbal footbath or leaf through a book from the library.
Cocobana Tea Rooms, 16 Nguyen Thai Hoc St, Hoi An. Tues-Mon 9am-late.
Hoi An Roastery
Fast becoming the town’s own home-grown Starbucks, lovely Hoi An Roastery launched its first café in the ancient quarter in 2015 and four years later has seven branches scattered across the town, which are some of the best Hoi An cafes and tea houses. Offering everything from pour-over to a French press, Hoi An Roastery’s fair-trade high-grade Arabica beans are sourced from coffee growers in the highlands of Dalat and roasted in Hoi An. Located in traditional historic buildings and furnished with rustic timber stools, retro chairs, and comfy banquettes and sofas, each café has a breezy interior thanks to big open windows. The original branch near Japanese Bridge is set in an ancient wooden house, while the Centre branch at 47 Le Loi has seating upstairs overlooking the street and a charming bougainvillea shaded patio. Hoi An Roastery also sells their coffee and offers workshops in coffeemaking, roasting and cupping.
Hoi An Roastery, 47 Le Loi, Hoi An. See the website for branch addresses. Open 7am-10pm daily.
Just across the road from the Centre branch of Hoi An Roastery, this inviting café, juice bar and farm shop is another reliable destination for coffee aficionados looking for quality coffee, as well as foodies in search of liquid and edible souvenirs, and is one of the best Hoi An cafes and tea houses. Decorated in a cosy, rustic style with a counter built from recycled wood, timber crates overflowing with fresh organic produce, and hessian sacks filled with coffee beans, Cocobox offers refreshing cold pressed juices, healthy fruit smoothies, apple cider, good coffee brewed from locally roasted beans from Dalat, and delicious homemade ice-cream, among other treats. While you’re sipping, you can browse the shelves for some delicious take-homes by small fair-trade producers from around Vietnam, including highlands tea, organic coffee-flower honey, fruit preserves and syrups, fine chocolate bars from the likes of Vietnam’s own Marou, and Saigon Charlie’s 100% natural smoked chilli sauces.
Cocobox, 94 Le Loi, Hoi An. Branches at 3 Chao Thuong Van, 95 Nguyen Thai Hoc, 42 Bach Dang. Open 7am-10pm daily.
Along with The Hill Station and Tadioto, Cong Caphe is another northern Vietnam business that has opened shop in Hoi An in recent years. The Hanoi-based coffeehouse chain started in 2007 with just one small café on Trieu Viet Vuong, an Old Town street dotted with historic cafés. Cong Caphe fast became popular thanks to its retro communist-era theme that appealed to Hanoians nostalgic for the, um, good old days – or perhaps simpler times when people sat and conversed with eachother rather than their smart phones. While the vintage décor – propaganda posters, army-issue enamelware, and antique books, telephones, cassette decks and transistor radios – is a big draw, the coffee is also good. You can still get the traditional Vietnamese robusta-based coffees with condensed milk, but you can also sip an espresso or cappuccino made with a blend of Arabica and Robusta exclusively created for Cong Caphe – or order a rich, creamy coconut milk coffee. They also do a range of coconut iced desserts inspired by Trang Tien Ice-cream, a childhood favourite of Hanoi residents. The Hoi An branch is in a yellow two-storey house overlooking the river.
Cong Caphe, 64 Cong Nu Ngọc Hoa, Hoi An, Open 7am-11.30pm daily.
Those are our recommendations for the best Hoi An cafes and tea houses for when you need to recharge. We’d love to hear your picks in the comments below.
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