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  • Elizabeth Ketcham Kheder

10 Things You Might Not Know about Arabic Coffee

  1. Coffee was only consumed in Arabia until the rest of the world caught on to the delicious drink around the 1600s.

  2. Middle Eastern coffee houses were and are to this day a place for people of all walks of life to gather, socialize, and discuss politics.

  3. Arabic coffee is a symbol of hospitality and generosity.

  4. When serving guests in your home you should always serve coffee last. Your guests might think you want them to leave if you serve it to them too early!

  5. In Turkey, they call breakfast "kahvaltı" which literally means "after coffee" because of how integral coffee is to their morning routines.

  6. Big life decisions and agreements are often made over a cup of coffee in the Middle East. For example, when a man wants to marry a woman he and his family visit the bride's house to ask for her hand, and there the bride traditionally serves everyone coffee. The groom is supposed to say he won't drink the coffee until his request his granted. If the bride has agreed to the proposal, the head of her household then tells the groom to drink his coffee as a sign that his request has been granted. Typically the bride is supposed to put salt in the groom's cup as a prank, and the groom is supposed to drink it without making any unusual facial expressions.

  7. Traditionally, coffee should be served to the head of the household first so that he/she can make sure the quality is good before the guests drink it.

  8. The younger is always expected to serve the older.

  9. The word for coffee in Arabic is "qahweh" and the word for the traditional pot that serves the coffee is a "dallah."

  10. Arabic coffee is usually heavily infused with cardamom and cloves, giving it a unique and rich flavor and aroma.

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