According to mythology, Ethiopia is where coffee was first found in the ninth century. After eating the fruit of an unidentified shrub, a goat herder named Kaldi discovered that his goats become unusually energized. In a nearby monastery, Kaldi brought the fruit to a monk who prepared a drink out of it and found that it kept him awake. This is regarded as the origin of coffee discovery. Everyone likes their coffee one way or the other, some drink coffee to stay sharp and active and others drink it because it has become their daily ritual or they can’t just do without it.
Coffees vary based on their blends, how they look and most of all, how they taste. Coffee has a long history in many different cultures all over the world. Greece is no exception. Greek coffee is a potent, smaller cup of coffee that many people choose to consume over a longer period of time.
Today, we would be placing our attention on the Greek coffee and how it’s been made. Several nations, like Italy, have created distinctive coffee cultures that have influenced the global coffee market. Greece does not lay claim to such distinctions, but through the years, it has created its own coffee culture. The Greek coffee culture and its history dates back to the time when Greece was a part of the Ottoman Empire.
Greek coffee can also be called Glykos in Greece amongst many other names. It was first discovered at the time that it was a part of the Ottoman Empire. The ancient method of brewing coffee in briquettes—what we now refer to as “Greek coffee”—has been practiced in Greece since the 19th century, possibly even earlier.
This coffee has been the star in Greece, as well as the other Balkan nations, for many years—almost up until the conclusion of World War II. The ancient method of brewing coffee in briquette, which is what we now refer to as Greek coffee, has been practiced in Greece since the 19th century or possibly even earlier. Without a doubt, the “kafeneio” was Greece’s first type of coffee shop.
From the final years of Ottoman rule, Greece has been home to the earliest coffee shops, which have been serving Greek coffee, beverages, and pastries. Brikis, which are little pots with long handles, are used to make Greek coffee. In a similar manner to powdered sugar, coffee is ground finely. Greek coffee isn’t filtered, so you’ll need an extra-fine grind size.
Types of Greek Coffee
You may wonder if Greek coffee has just one type, well this blog post is here to inform you that there are several types of Greek coffees and they include:
- Greek Frappé coffee: This is one of the most well-known coffee varieties in Greece.
- Espresso freddo and Cappuccino freddo: The cold-brew coffee drinks espresso freddo
and cappuccino freddo are relatively new to Greek coffee culture.
- Espresso and Cappuccino: Greece consumes a lot of espresso and cappuccino, which
were created in Italy at the beginning of the 20th century.
- Filter coffee: Although filter coffee is offered at coffee shops in Greece, it is not the most widely consumed variety. It has a mild flavor and usually has less caffeine than espresso or conventional Greek coffee.
- Cold Brew coffee: Some modern coffee shops in Greece provide cold brew coffee as a choice because making this requires several hours.
When selecting beans for Greek coffee, it’s crucial to choose premium, newly roasted beans that are fresh and of good quality. The Arabica beans are the type of coffee bean usually used to make Greek coffee and are well suited for the ancient Greek brewing procedure because of their robust, bold flavor and low acidity.
However there are other types of beans that can be used to make coffees and they include the likes of Robusta or a combination of Arabica and Robusta. The beans must be finely ground in order to completely dissolve in the boiling water, also it must be pounded to an extremely fine texture. This will ensure that the coffee has the correct texture and a robust flavor when it is brewed.
Also it is important to note that one of the most traditional and most popular Greek coffee varieties in Greek cafes is the Freddo coffee as it is an espresso double shot that has been beaten, blended, or mixed with ice cubes to resemble an espresso frappe.
Greek coffee, also known as “Ellenikos Kafes,” must be prepared in a specific pot known as a “briki,” a small conical pot with a long handle. It must be brewed differently since it is thick, black, and powerful. It is regarded as an art form and a sophisticated taste. In order to brew Greek coffee the traditional way, you’ll need 1–2 tsp Greek coffee (finely ground), 1 tsp sugar, 1/4 cup water(This depends on the amount of cups you plan to make). Also you’ll need to adhere to the procedure below:
Bring out your briki and put three ounces of water in it, put two teaspoons of finely ground coffee and two teaspoons of granulated sugar into the briki that has been filled with water. The Greek coffee pot should be heated slowly on the stove until it starts to foam. Once frothy bubbles have formed and have had time to settle, remove the coffee from the heat. Reheat the briki until more foam forms after all the bubbles have dissipated.
When the second layer of foam appears on top of the coffee, remove the briki from the heat and pour the coffee into a cup. You can now sip on your freshly prepared Greek coffee! Just make sure you also have a cup of water nearby because it’s usual to consume the two beverages together.
Note that, you always have to pay attention when the coffee is being brewed, if left for too long, the coffee will quickly boil over. Just raise the briki off the heat if the coffee begins to rise quickly. If you want your coffee to be sweet, add the sugar first. You don’t want to later agitate the situation.
Greeks dislike stirring their coffee too much. The coffee is frequently added by Greeks without being stirred. While pouring Greek coffee into the number of cups in an equitable distribution, note that the grounds and the kaimaki are to be divided equally too.
For many of our readers that would like to know how to brew Greek coffee at home and tips for the perfect cup, here are a few steps to follow in order to have it done:
- Start with coffee that has been finely ground so that it resembles powdered sugar.
- To the briki, add one cup of cold water.
- For each cup of coffee, add one generous tablespoon of coffee.
- If you prefer sweetness, add a teaspoon of sugar to each cup of coffee.
- Only give the coffee a couple stirs.
- For 1-2 minutes, increase the heat to medium-high.
- While the coffee warms, watch for the kaimaki to form. Take the coffee off the heat as it
starts to boil and then pour it out gradually into a cup.
Serving and Drinking
Having coffee is a huge thing here in Greece, this is because Greek coffee has a strong flavor. It doesn’t filter the coffee and uses a high coffee-to-water ratio (1:10 as opposed to 1:16 for ordinary coffee). However, while the drink itself is important, the expression “going for a coffee” doesn’t have much to do with the actual coffee consumption. Instead, it indicates meeting for a chat and a catch-up. First-time travelers to Greece are always surprised by the numbers of locals sitting around at cafés at any time of the day.
The coffee is ground as finely as powdered sugar or powder itself. Coffee and water are combined, then heated gradually (do not heat too quickly!) until a foam develops on top. “Kaimaki” is the name for this airy, creamy foam. Coffee is taken off the heat as soon as the froth has fully developed and is then poured in a little glass cup.In the bottom of the cup are the coffee grinds, and on top of the coffee is the froth.
This time, drinking slowly is advised because the grounds require time to settle in the cup before consumption. Instead, enjoy the foam. Greek coffee is typically served with a glass of water on the side and is robust and bitter with a dark roast, almost burnt flavor.
Some of the places one can find the best Greek coffee in Greece include:
- Café Taf is located in 7 Emmanouil Benaki, Athens, Greece (http://cafetaf.gr/).
- The DOPE Roasting Co. is located at Vissis 25 and Athènes 105 51.
- Da Capo is situated at Tsakalof 1 in Athens, Greece.
With this information, we now know alot about Greek coffees as we started by explaining what Greek coffee is and the types that we have. We also spoke about how to brew Greek coffees the traditional way as well as the homemade way following the guides given. WE then went ahead to
note how serving and drinking the Greek Coffee should be done as well as the best places to get these coffees.
If this blog post was very insightful and you are interested in learning more, please let us know in the comment section. Also, additional resources for readers interested in learning more about brewing Greek coffees include: