Coffee is one of the most widely-consumed drinks around the world in general, and Vietnam in particular. It’s a beverage that brings people together, and for many of us, it’s just what we need to start the morning right. Whatever you are interested in making your own rich, creamy lattes like the ones you get from your favourite cafes, or you want to make a specialty Vietnamese “cà phê sữa đá” – a thicken milk-coffee with ice, let us tell you a secret: choosing top-quality milk products is vital to crafting the perfect brew.
So why milk?
Some coffee lovers prefer to take their coffee without milk but for many of us, nothing beats a rich, creamy latte, cappuccino or Vietnamese milk-coffee. We love dairy in our coffee because it also provides added nutritional value with essential nutrients and vitamins like protein and calcium, while also giving us that extra energy boost.
Which milk is best?
With so many options of milk on the market today, it can be overwhelming when choosing the best milk option for you and your coffee. But by spending just a few minutes learning about what’s available and the impacts that each milk type has on your coffee, you can become your own barista in no time!
Where does quality milk come from?
Dairy milk is one of the world’s most natural sources of nutrients. While dairy is produced all over the world, some of the highest quality products come from the clean green pastures of Australia and New Zealand. These regions are not only known for their pure, natural quality dairy, but it’s also the place where true café culture began which sparked a new movement of coffee around the world, and Vietnam is an example. Here are some interesting facts about how the types of milk help create coffees to satisfy different taste buds.
Full cream or ‘whole’ milk is a barista’s best companion. When it comes to steaming milk in coffee shops, full cream milk is always the go-to option for the perfect latte. Most full cream beverages contain an average of 4% fat, which is a perfect amount to support the balance of flavour, texture, consistency and creaminess for the ultimate milk-based coffee. Whole milk might take a bit longer to warm up than other options, but it will give you a full bodied, creamy blend.
Low Fat Milk
Low Fat milk contains 1% fat and is a smart alternative for those trying to control their calorie intake. Low fat and full cream milk produce a similar consistency and quality foam, but low fat milk takes less time to steam or warm up. With low fat milk, you can consume less fat without compromising on the creamy flavour that whole milk delivers.
Skimmed milk contains no fat at all. Because of this, skimmed milk can make coffees taste lighter and not so intense. It also causes the foam to be less “fluffy’ which many coffee drinkers prefer, especially those who love a ‘flat white’; a small latté that contains a thin layer of micro foam on top. The absence of fat is also known to make coffees taste sweeter, so for those who do not enjoy the bitter taste of coffee, try skimmed milk in your next cuppa to test the difference.
Condensed Sweetened Milk
Reconstituted from Australian and New Zealand milk powder, then added sugar and condensed, Vietnamese condensed milk has penetrated the coffee culture of many generations, and is also one of the factors that make the milk-coffee famous in the world. If you are too familiar with a rush of iced milk-coffee in vibrant cities, try once to slow down with a hot milk-coffee in the peaceful highland cities of Vietnam – where the beans are cherished since it was still on the tree, to feel the difference in each thicken sip of coffee.
Putting a little bit of effort into selecting the type and origin of milk is a great first step to experiencing a truly delicious cup of coffee anytime, any day. If you are too busy making your own delicious cup of coffee, this list of cafes may save you a lot of time.