Fill of beans

From bou­tique cof­fee shops steeped in his­tory to sleek cafés crawl­ing with mil­len­ni­als, we pick five of the re­gion’s hottest spots to get your caf­feine fix

Southeast Asia Globe - - Flavours -


Think ‘mar­ket cof­fee shop meets cock­tail bar' – if that meet­ing took place in a for­mer hard­ware store. Chye Seng Huat Hard­ware Cof­fee Bar is the new­est ven­ture from the Papa Pal­heta cof­fee sup­pli­ers, who pride them­selves on be­ing “in­de­pen­dent cof­fee spe­cial­ists” in Sin­ga­pore and Malaysia. This quirky venue is also known for its 360-de­gree bar, where you can watch your barista go more

Cock­tail than Costa. Nu­mer­ous bean va­ri­eties, brew­ing meth­ods and flavours al­low your barista-mixol­o­gist to cre­ate some­thing that will make for a unique and mem­o­rable cup of Joe.


The sleek, black frontage of this su­perb lit­tle spot gives a hip stertinged hint of the com­mit­ment to cof­fee found in­side. With baris­tas who reg­u­larly win na­tional cham­pi­onships and finely crafted fil­ter cof­fees, in ad­di­tion to a gen­uinely ex­cit­ing food menu that in­cludes the likes of the soft shell crab burger, VCR is un­doubt­edly one of Kuala Lumpur's more for­ward-think­ing cafés. And de­spite be­ing rel­a­tively close to the shop­ping and tourist en­clave of Bukit Bin­tang, it also scores ex­tra cool points for be­ing just about dif­fi­cult enough to find.


Just a ten-minute walk from Ekka­mai sta­tion, this quirky lit­tle space dou­bles as an art gallery. Ink and Lion is owned by an art-lov­ing cou­ple, with the ev­i­dence preva­lent through­out the premises. Arts and crafts are scat­tered with aban­don, and the walls al­ways show­case work from lo­cal and in­ter­na­tional artists. How­ever, those more in­ter­ested in the cof­fee than the can­vas will not be dis­ap­pointed – the café trained the lat­est win­ner of Thailand's Na­tional Brewer Cups com­pe­ti­tion. Sam­ple their batches in the shop or even take a bag home with you.


Lo­cated in the bou­tique-lined streets of Siem Reap that have come to be known col­lec­tively as Kan­dal Vil­lage, the Lit­tle Red Fox has forged a rep­u­ta­tion for serv­ing the best cof­fee in Siem Reap, if not all of Cam­bo­dia. Spe­cialty brews such as the lemon­grass and ginger latte and the co­conut and cin­na­mon mocha dis­play an en­vi­able tech­nique and way with flavours. Add in the solid food menu and a record player belt­ing out 1960s Cam­bo­dian rock'n'roll, and you're left with an en­joy­able blend of Aus­tralian café cul­ture and Kh­mer stylings.


Bou­tique cof­fee houses are fast be­com­ing part of the fabric of the beau­ti­ful and chaotic Viet­namese cap­i­tal. Giang Café, lo­cated in the buzzing old quar­ter, has been op­er­at­ing since 1946 and has an old­school charm that so many cof­fee shops strive for. Not one to rest on its aes­thetic lau­rels, how­ever, Giang also serves up a true Hanoian spe­cial­ity: egg cof­fee, a de­li­cious, sweet con­coc­tion that is of­ten likened to the taste of tiramisu. There is also an egg hot choco­late on of­fer for those who need some­thing even more com­fort­ing than Ital­ian dessert in a mug.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Cambodia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.