The Coffee Factory is a chain you’ll see scattered about Saigon. Some of their shops are open air, and others have indoor facilities (the one I visited today in the Đa Kao Ward of District 1 is mostly indoors). Unsurprisingly, given the name, they go for something of an industrial theme, with exposed pipes carrying the wiring and minimalist metal chairs (at least primarily – there were a couple low couches). Low pop music played over the speakers, but most noise came from patrons. Đa Kao is a business district, so most of the shop’s visitors were smartly dressed office workers, with a few students scattered about.
Like most of the large chains, TCF offers both Vietnamese and Western style coffees, along with a few teas, juices, sodas and the like. There are even a few desserts and pastries. Also like most large chains, the prices are towards the high end. For Viet coffees, you have the choice of two sizes: a large for 39,000đ or small for 27,000đ. After ordering the large, I can at least attest that it is served in a large mug, though much of that is ice. It is, however, a robust flavor that sets itself apart from some of the other bland large chain shops. I wouldn’t measure it as equal to the best Saigon has to offer, but if you’re looking for the atmosphere and simplicity of a large-scale chain, The Coffee Factory is a good option.
Verdict: I stop in at The Coffee Factory occasionally because it’s reliable and common throughout the city, but it’s far from my top choice. If you like the atmosphere and style, and happen to be in the southwest part of District 3, I suggest T-Coffee instead (it’s cheaper and tastier). But I don’t want to denigrate TCF too much – as chains go it’s among the better options – it’s just not shortlist material.