The Importance of Turkish Coffee Culture

07 Mar, 2020

The distinctive character of the drink comes from this fine grinding, giving rise to a velvety froth, satisfying mouth feel and unique fragrance.

Turkish coffee has a 500-year old history, an inspiring culture, and rich traditions. It is the world’s oldest coffee brewing method. The first coffee house was opened in Istanbul in the 16th century. Turks introduced coffee, prepared their way to Europe, and later it came to the Americas. In 2015, Turkish coffee was admitted to the "UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage List" as a living heritage that was passed on by communities from generation to generation. There is a famous saying that goes “Bir kahvenin kırk yıl hatırı vardır - A cup of Turkish coffee is remembered with appreciation for 40 years” which means offering a cup of coffee binds a long lasting friendship. 




Turkish Coffee is the name given to a type of coffee whose preparation and brewing techniques were invented by the Turks. It has a unique taste, froth, aroma, brewing technique, and presentation… in other words it has its own identity and tradition.


The first coffee was made in the Arabian Peninsula by boiling coffee cherries. The new method invented by the Turks revealed coffee’s true flavor and peerless aroma. The Turks introduced coffee to Europe where for many years it was prepared and consumed as Turkish coffee.

Turkish Coffee is made from high quality Arabica coffee beans from Central America and Brazil that are blended and carefully roasted, then very finely ground. The coffee is mixed with water and the desired amount of sugar and cooked in a “cezve”, or Turkish coffeepot. The coffee is served in small cups. The coffee is unfiltered and must be left to stand for a short time after serving to allow the grounds to settle at the bottom of the cup.

Istanbul was introduced to coffee in 1517 by Özdemir Pasha, the Ottoman Governor of Yemen, who had grown to love the drink while stationed in that country.

The Turkish public became acquainted with coffee through the establishment of coffeehouses. The first coffeehouse opened in the district of Tahtakale in 1554 and others rapidly cropped up all over the city. Coffeehouses and coffee culture soon became an integral part of Istanbul social culture; people came here throughout the day to read books and beautiful texts, play chess and backgammon, and discuss poetry and literature.

As coffee became a staple in palace cuisine as well as in private homes, its consumption increased dramatically. The raw beans were roasted in pans and then ground in mortars. The coffee was then brewed in cezves and served with great care to esteemed friends. 

Thanks to the efforts of merchants and travelers who passed through Istanbul, and even Ottoman ambassadors, Turkish coffee’s renown soon spread to Europe and ultimately to the whole world.



What makes Turkish coffee truly unique and different?


Turkish coffee is a type of coffee that has a 500-year of history, an inspiring culture and traditions. From roasting to grinding and to serving, Turkish coffee culture is considered as an ancient art. It has symbolized love, peace and hospitality for centuries. In December 2013, Turkish coffee was admitted to UNESCO’s World Heritage list by as a cultural inheritance that has be protected. That's why we celebrate World Turkish coffee Day on December 5th every year.


What is the difference between Turkish coffee and regular coffee?


-        Turkish coffee has a 500-year old history that is rich in tradition. It is the world’s oldest coffee brewing technique invented by Turks in the 16th century.

-        Turkish coffee is the original gourmet coffee and the origin of nearly all coffee cultures found around the world today.

-        Turkish coffee uses the finest grind possible; finer than espresso and the coffee grounds become more like a cacao powder. 

-        It is unfiltered and the healthiest kind of coffee compared to others.

-        Turkish coffee is an energy and immunity booster; with a rich aroma, unique froth and fragrance.

-        It is a centuries old ritual, symbolizing peace and taste of friendship.

-        Turkish coffee is the only coffee that can be used to predict the future.


How to make foamy Turkish coffee?


You will need to have a copper pot with a long handle, water, a tablespoon, sugar and coffee.

For each serving, place one demitasse full of fresh water in the pot

Add1 heaping tablespoon of coffee

If you prefer it medium sweet, one spoonful sugar for each serving would be enough

Stir the mixture over low heat


When the coffee froths up, move your pot away from the stove.

Pour some of the foam into each cup.

Return the cezve to the heat and stir it one last time.

As soon as it froths up again, pour it on the cups and never stir the coffee

Drink your coffee only from one side of the cup. Sip it gently to not to disturb the grounds.