Last updated: Tuesday, February 19, 2019


Coffee Experience at the Source

Posted: Wednesday, March 15, 2017

The centennial history of coffee has created a wealth of material and spiritual values for the Central Highlands. As for Buon Ma Thuot, which is dubbed the “capital of coffee”, that value is not only a livelihood that enriches the people but also gradually penetrates into the indigenous culture. And, nowhere is compared to Buon Ma Thuot when coffee is the spirit and space for creating locally unique products.

At the heart of Buon Ma Thuot City, it takes only a few steps to get a good coffee house where you can taste delicious coffee brands of Buon Ma Thuot. Perhaps, the taste of Buon Ma Thuot coffee is the first thing that both the seller and the buyer think of. The taste is nursed from the fertile basaltic soil and coffee blenders always want to give customers a distinctive flavour which retains original bitterness, sweetness and enchanting aroma.

Situated at the gateway of trade with Central Highlands provinces, coffee culture of Buon Ma Thuot people has also been interchanged with other localities. In Buon Ma Thuot City, dwellers consider coffee an indispensable part of life. Inviting each other to drink coffee has become a familiar culture for everyone regardless of age. Coffee is a popular drink here. The cafes here always serve customers coffee all day. And, a cup of coffee is seen as a special refreshment and a bridge of communication that brings people closer together. Unlike other residents, E De, the indigenous ethnic group, has a unique way to blend and drink coffee. The culture of enjoying coffee is as quiet as ever. Many families in mountainous villages still prefer making coffee for their family members before they start a new day of work. Their secret is blending three types of coffee, namely Robusta, Arabica and Liberica. As life progresses, many E De people in Buon Ma Thuot actively carry their coffee to the city and they still retain their ways of making coffee and drinking coffee because they want to introduce their own culture to others.

Today, to meet the diverse needs of tourists, the space of drinking coffee is gradually experienced and retained by aficionado. With the heart of preserving E De culture, H’Len Nie Arul, owner of Arul Coffeehouse in Ako Dhong Village, used her own estate - the long-roofed house left to her by her father - to open this cafe and use profit to buy antique artefacts of E De people to display in her coffeehouse where customers can view. Dang Le Nguyen Vu, owner of Trung Nguyen Coffee Group who has brought Vietnamese coffee worldwide, has never forgotten his gratefulness to this land by his innovative products and preserved cultural space in Trung Nguyen Coffee Village.
Indeed, they love coffee beans and have passion for preserving the characteristic culture of Buon Ma Thuot.

And, you have the opportunity to experience this cultural space of coffee; coffee will inevitably become a wordless language that touches the heart, fill coffee knowledge gap, and stir emotions of coffee lovers. Nguyen Van Hieu, a visitor from Ho Chi Minh City, said, “I have visited Buon Ma Thuot many times. I am very impressed with the space of enjoying coffee in a pleasant green setting. Now, all people have grown organic coffee and I feel very assured of drinking coffee. Coffee products are more diverse than before.”

To meet consumer tastes, coffee spaces here open up different types of coffee business. Spacious and airy cafes offer gift coffee such as Trung Nguyen Coffee Village (Le Thanh Tong Street), Vi Dang, Khong Gian Xua (Mai Hac De, Y Ngong), Quan Van (Dinh Tien Hoang), Rainy (Le Duan), Arul (Ako Dhong Village), which attract a lot of tourists and middle-class civil servants. Most tourists come not only to experience coffee but also listen to music and explore other cultural and spiritual values. Youngsters are keen on worldly and elegant styles. Going to Kinh Chau Coffee (Ly Thuong Kiet Street), Bus Coffee (Nguyen Son) and Azzan Coffee (Nguyen Duc Canh), you will see a variety of products as well as coffee cupping styles typical of highlanders.

New coffees are spreading out to catch up with the faster pace of global integration. Regardless of their names, the tastes of Buon Ma Thuot coffee are still the eternal soul of this upland.

When you say goodbye to Buon Ma Thuot City, you may forget the name of a street or the name of a cafe that you ever visited, but the taste of Buon Ma Thuot coffee will bear in your mind because of familiar and exotic flavours blended together. In March 2017, if you have the chance to join Buon Ma Thuot Coffee Festival, you will not find surprise when you are invited to “get lost in the middle of coffee flowers, get hair incensed with coffee scent.”

Kim Bao

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