Romania, like the Balkan countries, was first introduced to coffee by the Ottomans (Turks) who remained as uninvited guests for a few hundred years. Coffee culture featured the ibrik and prolific coffee houses. The traditional way of roasting, brewing and enjoying coffee remains popular in rural areas from which baristas have earned several medals in the Cezve/Ibrik World Championships.
Per capita consumption is half the European average but coffee is viewed as an “affordable urban luxury” and is slowly gaining ground. Coffee products from the multinationals are available in packaged retail and out-of-home market and small national roasters are popping up along with independent coffee bars.
Green coffee is still dominated by robusta but arabica consumption is increasing.
SCAE’s World of Coffee 2017 exhibition will be hosted in Bucharest in adjoining Hungary which is expected to keep the local coffee culture blooming.
– Alf Kramer