The Workshop in Saigon, the coffee experience!

The Workshop is a new café in town, only few months old, but already very busy!

The reason why? Their coffee. This is what they do best and this is the main reason people come for. The Workshop produces it, transports it, roasts it, brews it, prepares it and drinks it (to make sure the preparation is well done). The place looks also very nice, it is one of these cool spots in Saigon where you like to go. Very similar to L’Usine in some ways, but definitely less busy. People come here to meet friends, do business, organise events, work, or simply drink a nice cup of coffee.

With a group of bloggers, we had the opportunity to meet Dung, the owner of the place, a coffee enthusiast as well! During an hour or so, we got to learn the various and surprising techniques of making coffee, the different types of coffee, the coffee roasting process, and of course, to try the coffee ourself.

I drink coffee myself, and I have to admit that until that day, I didn’t know a thing about it. Vietnam is a big producer of coffee, and around 99% of the coffee produced is Robusta, a less tasty but very concentrated and cheaper coffee. Arabica, on the other side, is less concentrated and can be drunk all day (well, there is still a limit). 70% of The Workshop coffee is from Vietnam, but they also prepare other kind of coffee like Ethiopia for example.

Roasting method was also very interesting, it helps the beans to lose their acidity. The roast-master knows all the techniques from beans used for an espresso or beans used for a latte. Totally different according to him.  The Workshop has their own roasting machine and roast-master that comes from Dalat every week to prepare and roast the beans. They make sure every single cup will be enjoyable, and this is exactly what you can feel when you go there. As Dung says: ” It’s all about taking the time to drink a good coffee” 😉

Random fact: Did you know that you need 70 beans for a cup of coffee?

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Where to work as a freelancer in Saigon?

I have noticed a lot of people work as freelancers in Saigon. Me included. The reason why is probably due to the all the advantages it gives, when you don’t have to go to the office at 8am every morning for example, and when you can work from wherever you feel comfortable to work from. Or when you manage your work the way you want it to, and not have someone constently telling you what you have to do. This freedom and this way of working has a price of course, and lots of disadvantages as well, but let’s focus Today on where it is cool to work when you are a freelancer in Saigon.

First of all, I have to say that driving a scooter is the best thing ever when living in Saigon, as it gives you a total freedom! You can drive from places to places easily and manage your time according to your priorities, meeting and stuff.

Places I LOVE to go:
🔸 The fly cupcake garden in District 3: recently the place I have been the most, as it’s quiet and very nicely decorated.
🔸 The WORK Saigon: an open space usually regrouping all kind of people from startups, entrepreneur to students. This whole house, set up and imagined by 2 young creative entrepreneurs, has been transformed in a really nice cocoon for creative minds and I really love it! Moreover they now have a cantine & coffee where you can get a nice brekki or a yummy lunch.
🔸 The Workshop: one of this places that specialize in coffee making and which looks incredible. A minimalist decoration, mixing simplicity and design on the second floor of a random building in D1. Not cheap but worths a look!
🔸 L’Usine: the most famous coffee in town, mixed with a concept store based on the Urban Outfitter/All Saints style if you have been to the UK. For me, a good place to meet people and schedule meetings, but not too work, as it’s always busy and noisy.
🔸 Mekong Merchant: in D2, one of this places where you actually feel ‘at work’ and where the staff actually knows you because you come too often, ordering the same coffee all the time. I remembered how impressed I was the first time I went there, I thought it was a very ‘exotic’ place with all this vegetation and its palm trees roof.
🔸The Loop: yummy latte! Cool atmosphere in the morning when its quiet, nice decoration and breakfast.
🔸Cucuta café: so cute & cosy. Not even mentioning the angora cat wondering around…

Places that worths a try:

🔸M2C café: very quiet and nice with amazing natural juices. A bit disappointed on the food though.
🔸ID café: I did an article about this one just here.
🔸The Fig café: very nice and calm, but a bit far from home.

Okay places:

🔸Tous les jours: a bakerie that serves coffees and patisseries. AC is colder than ever.
🔸Starbuck: nice to get your favourite white latte with cream on the top, or to get a bit of a Christmas feel with a Christmas cookie latte. But definitely too big and busy. And you have to get a new wifi code every hour.

I actually have so many in my minds, but most of them, I can’t remember the name or the address and I can only direct you there.

Saigon has so many hidden cafés everywhere. Go in a random building and I am not surprise if you find a super trendy café with lounge and chill sofa, AND amazing beats in the background. Yes it is possible!

Marion xoxo

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