On our first day in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) Vietnam we had a tour around different districts and we were taken to a very popular coffeehouse which came highly recommended. Cheo Leo has been trading in the same place for over 80 years, purchasing the coffee beans direct from the farms roasting, grinding and then brewing them in clay pots and strained through cloths. A tradition unchanged since 1938, founded by Vinh Ngo and is now owned and run by his eldest daughter Le Thi Tuyet. The clay pots and oven are the originals her father used all those years ago.
Cheo Leo stood alone in an isolated area and could be spotted by the oil lamps burning, its now surrounded by houses and shops in central District 3.
In today's busy business world and the large corporate coffeehouse chains, this one certainly stands out from the crowd. We walked in to the small seated area which was full, yet a table of young Vietnamese students got up, cleared the table and even wiped it down for us. I was told that this is what usually happens for the locals to help out.
Best coffee I ever tasted.!
Here are are a few photos of the coffee being made.
More images form my travels to Vietnam and Cambodia can be found in the galleries drop down menu.