The Saigon Cigar Club

Located on the Lounge Level of Sorae Restaurant on floor 24 of the AB Tower in Saigon, The Saigon Cigar Club features a full-fledged member club, a beautiful, one of a kind, 400-cigar table humidor, and a well maintained selection of cigars and accessories. 

Founded by two friends with a passion for cigars, the lounge is a personal hobby that is open for all to visit and enjoy. They guarantee personally that 100% of the product they sell is authentic, without any exception. Their commitment makes the Saigon Cigar Club the best destination in Vietnam for truly authentic "xì gà"!

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The Long @ Times Square

The Long @ Times Square is a café and restaurant which is part of The Reverie Saigon. It is the ideal place for an after-hour drink in Central Ho Chi Minh City.

The Long @ Time Square

Drawing inspiration from the timeless sidewalk cafes of France and Italy, The Long @ Times Square is the parlour of the city – a place for serendipitous encounters, refreshing breaks and casual rendezvous.

Cocktail at The Long @ Time Square

Lunches at The Long are always varied and enticing, with an east-meets-west menu of contemporary cooking, complemented by daily specials highlighting the finest seasonal produce. Healthy smoothies and bright tropical juices are mixed to taste, whilst enormous ice creams headline a mouth-watering dessert menu. Every afternoon, The Long invites patrons to take a break with a leisurely afternoon tea or Italian coffee, whilst evenings call for delicious aperitifs and pre-dinner drinks.

Food at The Long @ Time Square

The Long @ Times Square can be reached by walking from several famous Ho Chi Minh City attractions such as the Opera and Parkson Shopping Center.

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Air 360 Sky Lounge

Not far across from its sister club, Chill SkyBar, the Air 360 Sky Lounge is the newest addition to the Capella Entertainment family. More adult and more business than Chill, Air 360 centers around a multi-level, lounge-like space with plenty of seating and a 360 degree view of the city. In a nutshell, Chill entertains, Air 360 helps unwind.

Ambiance

The venue is split into roughly four levels, starting from the Sky Pool, where guests can reserve a private event space with a swimming pool. The Sky Deck and indoor area sit on the next level, offering an outdoor bar similar to Chill’s but with a bit more space to sit and lounge around. The Sky Gallery is the walkway between the upper level and the Sky Deck. Finally, the upper level offers a higher vantage and a more private space for intimate groups to chat. The Sky Pool runs “Dining by the Pool” from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. with modern Vietnamese cuisine that focuses on fresh seafood, meat and vegetables.

Air 360 Skybar

Not as crowded or noisy as its sister venue, those who prefer Chill’s indoor area and generally an environment suitable for after-work mingling will enjoy Air 360’s multi-level options. Those who prefer indoor area will find a classy, quiet lounge to dine and wine in. The crowd consists of professionals, more mature couples, artists and creatives, and more; a more adult audience in general.

Air 360 Skybar Saigon

Service

Service can be expected to be on par with Chill, albeit more accommodating for those who simply want a drink and a view, and not an all-night bottle session. There is little pressure to purchase anything and staff is smiley and accommodating.

Air 360 Skybar

Drinks

Like its sister venue, Air 360 features a number of custom cocktails that incorporate elements of Vietnam with Western spirit practices. During our time we tried three signatures, recommended by the head bartender:

Air 360 Skybar HCMC Drink

White Night

Gin, cucumber, ginger, sugar, lime and port wine make up the White Night, one of Air 360’s infusions of Western and Eastern ingredients. The gin and cucumber make for a fresh, cooling palate, and the lime and port make for sour-sweetish element that give this drink an added kick. Gin lovers will be pleased.

Chocolate Martini

There is no vermouth, vodka or gin in this martini – but as this is Vietnam, regular naming conventions may not apply. Instead, you get a nice mix of dark rum, cacao liqueur and a chocolate liqueur, resulting in a Black Russian of sorts, a bit creamy and sweet.

Sexy Bar

A tropical blend, fruit juice lovers will find this up their alley with its well-masked alcohol. Rum, mango juice, orange juice, coconut, vanilla syrup and lime juice create a more-sweet-than-sour blend that goes down easy. It may be too sweet for some, but those who like fruity cocktails will enjoy the Sexy Bar.

What Can Be Improved

The signature drinks are more on the sweet and sour end. Those who prefer old fashioned, less-saccharine options will not find as many choices.

What People Say

With a little over 20 reviews at the time of writing, Air 360 Sky Lounge has a solid four bubble rating, with many people praising the experience, atmosphere and service. The 360 degree view seems to be a consistent favorite.

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East West Brewing Co.

The first thing you’ll notice entering East West Brewing Co. is the gleaming machinery towering overhead.

As the doors close behind you, shutting off the din of downtown District 1 and Ly Tu Trong street, your ears will be greeted with the cavernous acoustics of something like to a museum. The floor plan is open permitting a clear view of the Ho Chi Minh City brewer’s pièce de résistance: the mammoth gleaming tanks on two floors that make up the beer maker’s in-house brewery.

east west brewing

Show, Don’t Tell

In response to why the brewhouse was built to be a public-facing operation, East West Brewing Co.’s founders explained that craft beer’s relative newness and novelty in Vietnam created an opportunity for them to present the drink in a more intimate way.

At the time of writing, East West remains the only place in Saigon where the city’s thirsty can drink a craft beer made on site. Brewery spokeswoman Mimi Truong said that explaining the broader motivation of craft beer—the process, the reasons behind making it and drinking it versus a Tiger or Heineken— is a bit like telling a story.

east west brewing

Like all stories, it benefits from a visual aid.

Mimi used an analogy to explain. “Let’s say you’re eating street food outside. There’s some kind of relationship when you visually see them cooking and the hard work that goes into that process.”

“If we didn’t show the general public upfront what craft beer was about, then the understanding wouldn’t be there”, Head Brewer Sean Thommen said. “That’s the biggest challenge that we have as a country that doesn’t really have a craft beer culture behind it.”

“We could just be brewing the beer elsewhere and using the location as a taproom”, Mimi said. But “to actually have it laid down in front of you ... it introduces the concept of real brewers brewing real quality beer. It creates this relationship that’s more personal.”

“It’s one thing to tell you, it’s another to show you”, Mimi said.

How It’s Made

The untrained eye might get lost in the chromy gleam of the open brewery. The four tanks at the top are seated on another five polished 1,500 litre tanks at the ground floor.

It’s like looking at the engine of a car: the industrial beauty is enhanced by the mystery of how the Rube Goldberg machine-like invention works.

East West Brewing Co. offers tours of its brewery to learn more about how they make the beers.

During the tour, you might learn that the brewery is not just a two-storey machine, but also contains a third at the very top. It’s here that the recipe begins, crushing the grain in preparation for the mash.

From there, the malt moves to the second “hot” floor where the ingredients are combined with boiling water and cooked to specification. Then the liquid is moved to the kettle and boiled. This is where one of the most important steps for perfecting flavour happens: adding the hops.

east west brewing

Unfinished beers leaving the second floor are sent to the bottom to cool and condition in the 1,500 litre tanks standing at attention adjacent to the dining room floor. Depending on the style of beer, the unfinished brew could be in fermentation for a long time—the malty, pronounced Independence Stout calls for a resting period of a month and a half—or a short one, like the Summer Hefeweizen, which is ready for kegging and bottling in just over two weeks.

The brewery is built in levels like this to have gravity do the work of moving the tremendous liquid volumes from the top to the ground floor where the beers enter the fermentation stage, the last step in becoming drinkable, finished brews.

Changing Tastes

As Saigon’s beer lovers are getting to know East West Brewing Co., the brewer is also getting to know it’s audience and it’s shifting preferences better.

For example, when the microbrewery opened a year ago, the top seller was the Saigon Rosé. The light, fruity raspberry wheat beer was a popular first foray into craft beer for the local drinkers, a crowd typically doused with light lagers like Tiger and 333 at other places.

Then, “in just six months the palette changed so quickly”, Mimi said.

Nowadays, the brewery is now equally known and renowned for the Summer Hefeweizen, a citrusy, zesty take on the classic German wheat ale recipe, as well as their Far East IPA, and its flagship East West Pale Ale, a polished, hoppy beer that acts as ”a nice bridge” out of the land of industrial scale lagers, Mimi said.

east west brewing

The beer that carries the brewery’s name is an abridged reimagining of the company’s story. The East West Pale Ale combines hops from the US with hops in New Zealand. Similarly, East West Brewing Co. is the lovechild of a marriage between craft beer—a western convention—to a vision formulated by a US-raised Vietnamese entrepreneur Loc Truong and Sean Thommen, a US native leading the brewing operation.

“If they can come in and see it, smell it … they can understand why it’s not just a product”, Thommen said. “We have to show them that it’s … an experience, there’s a science behind it.”

Most importantly, he added “it’s fun.”

Your meal prep routine will forgive you if you head to East West Brewing Co. for lunch. With a wide selection of Saigon & San Diego based dishes ranging from VND50,000 to VND175,000+, your wallet won’t likely mind either. Choose from a menu that includes appetizers like the Lotus Root Palm Heart Salad or Steak Watercress Salad and a main course, like the Spicy Garlic Tiger Prawn Tacos, California Burrito, or Teriyaki Salmon.

Come back on Saturday and Sunday morning for brunch. For VND750,000+, you can indulge in the brewery’s Kegs N’ Eggs Weekend Brunch package, which includes free flow craft beer as well as creme brulee french toast, california eggs benedict, and carne asada steak tacos.

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Level 23 Wine Bar

Perched on the 23rd floor of Sheraton Saigon, Level 23 Wine Bar enjoys a comfortable spot among the popular rooftop bars in Ho Chi Minh City. Technically not a wine bar, Level 23 however has a more than adequate wine cellar.

View Level 23

You can catch the awesome Saigon sunset in a quiet, unpacked environment on weekday evenings. If the pinnacle of nightlife in Saigon for you is a great sunset view, a quite atmosphere and some smooth cocktails, then Level 23 should be on your must-visit checklist in Ho Chi Minh City.

Scenic view

The daytime view is quite a sight – the positioning of the bar ensures views of all the prettiest skyscrapers and a good chunk of the Saigon River, along with the many little colourful apartment blocks scattered everywhere. If you sit just right, the bar’s pillars should provide enough glare protection.

From 8 p.m. onwards, Tuesday to Sunday, Level 23 Nightspot opens its door to let the DJ music from the indoor lounge flow into the al fresco area. For those preferring a more sedate evening, Mondays are recommended.

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Pasteur Street Brewing Co.

New Locations for American-Style Craft Brewing in Saigon

If you’re looking for craft beer in Saigon, Pasteur Street Brewing Co. is the place to go. Since 2015, beer lovers have been heading down a small hem off of Pasteur Street to enjoy the creative brews at the “Original” taproom at 144 Pasteur.

Now fans of the company have even more reason to celebrate. Pasteur Street Brewing Co. has expanded to include four taproom locations in Saigon and one in Hanoi.

If you love the location of the “Original” taproom but want to appreciate great beer in a larger space, go a little further down the same eye-catching alley as the “Original” but instead of taking the stairs on the left continue on and to your right you’ll find the “Hem” taproom. Since June 2017, the “Hem” has become the perfect place to go for a party or larger groups, or maybe just to enjoy the warm rooftop breeze while you sample Pasteur Street Brewing Co.’s excellent beer selection. The new expansive space boasts two floors, one of which is a rooftop, making it the perfect location for events, private parties, and tastings.

pasteur street brewing

The expansion has been so successful that as of December 2018, the brewer has grown even further to include two more taprooms in District 7 (67 Le Van Thiem) and District 2 (120 Xuan Thuy).

In addition, fans of the company should be aware of the “Ha Noi” taproom, which opened directly behind the historic St. Joseph’s Cathedral in Hanoi’s Old Quarter in July of 2017. The location spans two levels and includes an outdoor seating area.

Ambiance

Everyone is made to feel welcome at all locations. It’s easy to have a solo, after work drink; to kick back and enjoy a few pints with a group of friends or to host an excellent party. Just pick your taproom and the capable staff at Pasteur Street Brewing Co. will do the rest.

pasteur street brewing

Beers and Food

Beer aficionados can sample Pasteur Street Brewing Co.’s fine, American-style craft brews with fresh local Vietnamese ingredients at all locations. For a true craft beer, quality ingredients are key. The brewers at Pasteur Street Brewing Co. make sure of this by sourcing their hops from America, Australia and New Zealand. But what makes this beer truly special are the creative flavour additions. The brewers choose ingredients grown in Vietnam of the highest quality. One of Pasteur Street’s most popular beers is the Passion Fruit Wheat Ale, which is made with fresh passion fruit juice. Another customer favorite, the Jasmine IPA, is complemented with the addition of real jasmine flowers. Chocolate lovers should try the Imperial Chocolate Stout, which won the 2016 World Beer Cup.

pasteur street brewing

Each taproom features a selection of different beers on tap, so people can also get a taste of new flavours. There is always a balanced selection of light, heavy, dark, sour, and hoppy brews to ensure that there is a beer for every palate. The food is a comforting combination of Western pub food such as Nashville Hot Chicken and Vietnamese street food.

Contact:

The Original Taproom | 144 Pasteur Street, District 1, HCMC

Opening hours: Monday – Thursday 4pm – 11pm & Friday – Sunday 11am – 11pm | Phone: +84 28 7300 7375

Hem Taproom | 144/3 Pasteur Street, District 1, HCMC

Opening hours: Daily 11am – 11pm | Phone: +84 28 7300 7375

Thao Dien Taproom | 120 Xuan Thuy, District 2, HCMC

Opening hours: Monday – Thursday 4pm – 12am & Friday – Sunday 11am – 12am | Phone: +84 28 6273 0562

District 7 Taproom | 67 Le Van Thiem, District 7, HCMC

Opening hours: Monday – Friday 4pm – 11pm; Saturday – Sunday 11am – 12pm | Phone: +84 28 6278 8895

 

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