Visiting Saudi Arabia? Hope you like coffee

      Published on Friday, 3 August , 2018      23 Views     
Visiting Saudi Arabia? Hope you like coffee

  • Life

An American friend of mine told me he will be visiting Saudi Arabia and asked me about what to expect. After pausing for a few seconds, I told him, “I hope you like coffee.”

While Saudi Arabia is probably not the first country that comes to mind when one thinks of coffee the way Colombia, Brazil or Ethiopia do, it does play an important part in the lives of Saudis.



With a culture steeped in displaying generosity and hospitality to guests, those visiting any region in Saudi Arabia are likely to be offered coffee – and tea – repeatedly just about anywhere they go. While there is no shortage of coffee houses serving American, Italian or Turkish style coffee, it is Arabic coffee that Saudis take special care and pride in serving.

This coffee, which is also popular in other countries along the Arabian Gulf, looks, smells and tastes different than the coffee Westerners – and much of the world – are familiar with thanks in large measure to the global phenomenon known as Starbucks.

What is interesting is that while Saudis love their own coffee, many have also embraced Western-style cafes, especially Starbucks. In some way, this duality is emblematic of the Saudi Arabia of today: a country that is proud of its traditions and heritage but that is also open to new influences and that has embraced the idea of being a member of a wider, ever-more interconnected, global community.

Preparing and serving this beverage is a serious matter, and many follow a strict etiquette when serving it.

Fahad Nazer

As a Saudi, I admit that Arabic coffee is something of an acquired taste. It looks and tastes different than American-style coffee, Italian-style espresso or even Turkish coffee. Preparing and serving this beverage is a serious matter, and many follow a strict etiquette when serving it. While it was traditionally prepared in the presence of the guest, it is now prepared elsewhere but the same method – boiling lightly-roasted green beans, as opposed to brewing them through a filter – is still used. Cardamom, cumin, cloves, saffron are often added. The coffee is also still served in a specially designed pot called a dallah and poured in a special demitasse called finjal or finjan.

While often served by the youngest person in the room, the first person served is usually the most senior. The dallah is held in the left hand and the finjan is given by the right hand. The server will often stand by until the person has finished his or her first cup. A shaking of the demitasse indicates that the person has had enough. While it is perfectly acceptable to have more than one, there is some pressure to drink that first cup rather quickly. That skill comes with time.

It is worth noting that in 2015, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) added Arabic coffee to its “Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.” In 2016, a coffee museum opened in the Eastern Province.

Like other coffee shops around the world, cafes in Saudi Arabia have become places for friends or family to meet and relax. It is also a forum for cultural events, like meetings of book clubs, poetry readings and art exhibits. More recently, music has been added to the mix.

A number of Saudi sociologists have attributed the popularity of  “coffee culture” in Saudi Arabia to millennials and their exposure to social media.



Visitors to the Kingdom will no doubt be exposed to both traditional Arabic coffee and Western-style coffee shops. In Saudi Arabia, the former is proudly preserved, while the latter is fully embraced.

Keywords:
Category Life | 2018/08/03 latest update at 7:01 PM
Source : You Tube | Photocredit : Google
24 Views
Comments Add comment



Related Articles

The editorial staff of Saudi Arabia Today would like to give all of its readers from Gulf and Saudi Arabia and the whole world the opportunity to participate actively in the development of the website! If you have something interesting, fun, scandalous - just something worth to be seen from more people. Capture it and share it in the Saudi Arabia Today with a short text.

Do you have information you want to reach our readers?

Send article/s

You can subscribe to our Facebook, Twitter and Google pages or use our RSS feed channel to always read the most important news about Saudi Arabia, the Gulf and the world.


Sponsored Publications



Air Arabia Egypt Launches Direct Flights Between Sohag and Riyadh
Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia news

Air Arabia Egypt Launches Direct Flights Between Sohag and Riyadh

Air Arabia Egypt has launched a direct flight from Sohag in Egypt to Saudi Arabia’s capital city, Riyadh. Roundtrip…

Saudi Arabia new rules

Property prices continue to fall in key UAE markets

UAE banks invest Dh87 billion in Saudi Arabia, Egypt

King Salman receives dignitaries in Riyadh King

King Salman receives dignitaries in Riyadh

The Kingdom’s Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul Aziz Al-Asheikh, senior scholars, ministers and a group of citizens called on…

Saudi King Salman reshapes country’s political and security affairs council King

Saudi King Salman reshapes country’s political and security affairs council

Saudi King Salman on Thursday announced a new list of appointees to key positions in the country’s political…

Saudi Arabia’s Prince Talal bin Abdulaziz has died King

Saudi Arabia’s Prince Talal bin Abdulaziz has died

Saudi Arabia’s Prince Talal bin Abdulaziz passed away on Saturday, family members and Saudi media said on Twitter.…

Bahraini crown prince meets Saudi officials in Riyadh King

Bahraini crown prince meets Saudi officials in Riyadh

Bahrain Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa held talks with Saudi officials in Riyadh this week. His visit…

GULF TV

Popular in GULF TV

PIRELLI “DREAMING” – THE CAL 2019 making of Full Version | Fashion Channel

1836 Views

A photographic tale of the aspirations of four women and their determination to achieve their goals, each one…

Latest videos in GULF TV

Events

Lifestyle

Culture

Sport

Science & Technology

Government