Lavazza, Coffee Roots: Egypt part 3

Uploaded by lavazza on 24.02.2012

The aroma in Alexandria’s coffee shops
is tantalising.
The products are hand-packaged
in little paper bags
using the same techniques
of centuries ago.
The blends are used to prepare
the typical spiced coffee which,
in the local tradition,
is complemented with resin,
cardamom powder, nutmeg and cloves.
The Café Riche survived
the architectural changes
of its neighbourhood
and has maintained
a decidedly retro style.
Its troubled existence
is linked to post-colonial Egypt.
This is where an assassination attempt
was carried out in 1919
against Youssef Wahba Pasha,
guilty of favouring the policies
of the Western allies.
When customers place their order,
they immediately tell the waiter
how much sugar they want.
Sugar is passed up only
as a sign of sadness,
such as when mourning.
Coffee-grind reading
is a common occurrence.
In the rest of Egypt
tea is the preferred beverage.
This is consequent to the British occupation.
The rural areas are especially resistant
to the Turkish-Ottoman customs.