What Is Vietnamese Coffee Phin? (Everything You Need to Know)

Last Updated on January 27, 2022 by John Moretti

There is something special sweeping over the world of coffee, and if you have been to a specialty coffee shop recently, you would have seen it too. The Vietnamese Phin coffee brewer is becoming more popular in international coffee shops, and the coffee it produces is quickly becoming a favorite in the coffee community. But what is Vietnamese coffee, and what is the Vietnamese Coffee Phin?

The Vietnamese Phin is a drip coffee brewer that is similar to a French press or a pour-over brewer. Metal filters allow finely ground coffee to brew slowly within the Phin, and it is typically used to make very strong Vietnamese coffee drinks that are prepared with sweetened condensed milk.

Vietnamese Phin coffee is something truly special, and not many people outside of Asia have experienced it. This type of coffee is rapidly growing in popularity internationally, and it’s time that we explore Vietnamese coffee and the special brew that is used to make it.

Coffee Phin

What Is The Vietnamese Phin?

The Vietnamese Phin is a special drip brewer used in Vietnam to make Vietnamese coffee varieties. The brewer itself is not complicated, and making coffee with it is simple, but it is something special because it is unlike any other brewer.

If you have been to a trendy specialty coffee house recently, you may have seen something called Vietnamese Phin coffee on the menu. This may lead you, along with many others, to wonder what the Phin is and why this seems to be such a big deal?

The Phin Filter is made of four stainless steel components, including the brew chamber, the filter plate, the gravity press, and the lid. The Phin itself looks like a small and simple metal cup and saucer with a lid, but it is capable of brewing some excellent coffee. 

The filter plate and the brew chamber both have small holes for filtering the coffee that is brewed with the Phin, and the gravity press is placed inside the chamber on top of ground coffee beans to keep them pressed to the bottom while brewing.

The lid of the Phin filter is used to keep the temperature within the brewer more stable, as the brew time of Phin filter brewers is relatively long.

The Vietnamese Phin filter brewer is essentially a drip brewer. Medium-fine coffee grounds are placed within the brewer, and hot water is placed in the chamber to fill it. The water slowly drips through the coffee and falls into the waiting vessel below.

Pour over
A Standard our-over

Some have described the Phin as a combination of the French press brewer and a standard pour-over brewer, and this is a good general description of the brewer.

The coffee produced by the Phin brewer can be very strong, depending on how you brew it. It can be used to brew single cups of coffee or multiple cups, and there are various sizes of Phin filters to match most brewing requirements.

The Phin is a versatile little brewer, and it is something that any coffee lover would be happy to have at home for brewing their morning coffee.

What Coffee is Made Using The Phin Brewer?

What Is Vietnamese Coffee Phin

The Phin coffee brewer is typically used to brew Vietnamese-style coffee, but it can be used to brew any style of coffee that is similar to pour-over or French press. If you make the coffee strong enough, it can even be used to make espresso-style drinks such as cappuccinos or lattes.

The standard use for the Phin filter is to prepare Vietnamese coffee. This style of coffee is typically an iced drink that is brewed with very strong Phin drip coffee and sweetened condensed milk.

This drink is typically made with strong coffee. Usually, a 2:1 water to coffee brew ratio, which is similar to espresso in strength and combined with very sweet condensed milk as fresh milk, is not easily available in Vietnam. 

Vietnamese coffee is typically poured over ice because the climate is so hot in Vietnam that no one wants to drink a steaming hot beverage.

With that being said, any style of drip coffee can be prepared using a Vietnamese Phin brewer. This brewer is versatile and can prepare coffee on any strength if you use the right brew ratio.

Make a strong coffee for intense espresso-based drinks such as a flat white or dilute the Phin filter coffee with hot water for a pour-over style black coffee. The choice is yours, and the options are only defined by your imagination.

How Does The Phin Compare To Other Brewers?


The closest brewer compared to the Phin that you may know of is the Hario Switch pour-over brewer. Using a Phin is a combination of immersion and percolation brewing, as the coffee is in contact with almost all of the water all of the time, but the water is allowed to drip slowly through the coffee grounds.

The Phin brewer is very simple to use and requires no paper filters or additional filters of any kind. This means that the Phin is always ready to go, and the clean-up after brewing is extremely minimal.

Brewing with a Phin requires very little skill, and with some practice, even a beginner home barista can brew excellent coffee using it. There is not much to using the Phin, so the learning curve is not very steep.

This type of filter and brewer allows the person brewing the coffee to make all of the decisions regarding brew method and coffee intensity, which makes the Phin one of the most versatile brewers when compared to any other brewer around.


A Phin brewer is a Vietnamese-style brewer that is very simple to use and is capable of producing high-level coffee without much effort. This is a brewer that would be at home in the kitchen of any coffee lover and is quickly becoming the preferred brewing method of many home baristas.

Use the Phin to create a Vietnamese-style coffee for the full Phin experience, and you may never want to use another type of brewer again!