Looking for a new way to brew your coffee? Greek coffee refers to how coffee is made from very finely ground beans.
Greek coffee is strong and robust. It can be made with any type of coffee beans, but the way the beans are prepared is what makes Greek coffee unique!
Continue reading to learn more about Greek coffee and take a look at some Greek coffee brands to help you make this special brew.
What is Greek Coffee?
Greece doesn’t grow coffee because it’s not located in the Bean Belt, which has ideal coffee-growing conditions. Greek coffee is actually a type of grind and brewing method that’s been a part of Greek culture for centuries.
The coffee grind and brewing methods are specific to the Balkans and the Middle East. You may have heard of Bosnian or Turkish coffee, which is essentially the same as Greek coffee. The two might have some small differences in how the coffee is prepared, but it involves a lot of the same steps.
The way Greek coffee is made is what makes it so special. It uses an extra fine grind to the point where it’s a powder-like consistency. Greek coffee brands sell this finely ground coffee so you can prepare it at home.
The finely ground beans are boiled, rather than brewed. This gives it a nice, creamy consistency.
History of Greek Coffee
There’s a debate on who came up with this special coffee-making method first. Many say that the method originally started in Turkey and then spread to other parts of the Middle East and made its way to the Balkans.
The Ottomans are responsible for bringing coffee into the Middle East. When they invaded Yemen in the 1500s, they found coffee.
Coffee beans were then imported to Istanbul, Turkey from Yemen. Coffee began to spread to other parts of the region and made its way to Greece.
Many of the countries in the Balkans and Middle Eastern regions adopted the same method to make coffee. Buying Greek coffee brands is like buying Turkish coffee. What’s most important is the type of grind used to make the coffee.
What Kind of Beans Are Used for Greek Coffee?
Arabica beans are used to make Greek coffee, but Robusta beans can be used as well. If you’re making Greek coffee from scratch, you can use any kind of beans you want.
If you want to have a flavored Greek coffee, you can use your favorite flavored beans to make the drink. Greek coffee is typically enjoyed black or with sugar and a small amount of milk. If you want a stronger coffee, you might want to use beans that have a bolder flavor.
The process to make Greek coffee makes a really strong cup of coffee. If you’re not a fan of super strong coffee, you can find a milder coffee to try or change the coffee-to-water ratio.
To get the full Greek coffee experience, it’s best to use high-quality Arabica beans that will make a rich and creamy cup of coffee.
Flavor profiles can range depending on where the beans are from. Turkish coffee is a little different from Greek coffee when it comes to the types of beans used. Turkish coffee typically uses lower-quality beans and sugar is usually added.
How to Make Greek Coffee
Greek coffee is made through an unfiltered process. This means that you don’t separate the grounds from the coffee once it’s been boiled. Instead, the grounds sit at the bottom of a small coffee cup.
In order to make authentic Greek coffee at home, you’ll want to have a few of these tools on hand:
- Small pot called a briki (sometimes called a cezve or ibrik)
- Scale (optional)
- Coffee mill (manual coffee grinder) or pre-ground coffee
- Wooden spoon
A briki is a small pot used to boil ground coffee in water. They can come in different sizes, but brikis usually hold enough water to make one or two cups of coffee.
The amount of coffee made for one serving of Greek coffee ranges between 60-90 ml. You can use a scale to help measure out the right coffee-to-water ratio. This can be adjusted depending on how strong or weak you like your coffee.
Generally, a 1:10 ratio works well for Greek coffee. If you’re using this ratio, you’d add 10 grams of water for every 1 gram of coffee. This is where a scale can come in handy because Greek coffee is usually measured out in grams.
Steps to make Greek coffee can differ, but if you want to make it at home you can try this method and adjust it according to taste.
- Fill your briki with your desired amount of water-to-coffee ratio (leave enough room at the top of your briki for the coffee to foam)
- Give the coffee and water a few stirs
- Place your briki over medium heat and give it one or two more stirs
- Let the coffee sit on medium heat until it begins to foam
- Once foaming, take the briki off the heat to allow the foam to go down
- Place the briki back on the heat until it begins to foam again
- Remove from heat
- Pour your coffee into a cup and let it sit for 2-3 minutes to cool and let the grounds settle
Some methods may not include placing it back on the heat and only let it foam once. It can take a few tries and adjustments to make the coffee just right for your own taste buds.
Best Greek Coffee Brands
Loumidis Papagalos Traditional
- Creamy cup
- Gives instructions on how to make Greek coffee
- Type of beans not specified
Loumidis Papagalos Traditional is produced by Nestlé in Athens, Greece. It has a mellow flavor with some hints of chocolate. This coffee is a classic roast that gives off a strong aroma and produces a smooth and creamy cup.
This brand doesn’t specify the type of beans used for their Greek coffee. The bag does include instructions on the back on how to make Greek coffee.
Bravo Greek Coffee
- Kosher Certified
- Produces nice foam
- Mellow flavor (depending on preference)
- Blend of beans (quality not specified)
Bravo is a coffee brand produced in Greece. This coffee is a blend of beans that have been slow-roasted to a medium roast. It gives off a nice aroma and isn’t too strong.
The mellow flavors of this coffee might be ideal for someone who wants to try Greek coffee but doesn’t want it to be too strong. It produces a nice amount of foam, which is one of the best features of Greek coffee.
Venizelos Greek Style Coffee
- Consistent taste and quality
- Strong flavor
- Not ideal if you want a darker and stronger roast
Named after a Greek statesman, Venizelos Coffee was started as a family business by George K. Callas in New York. He immigrated to America in the early 20th century and began distributing small packages of coffee to newly-arrived immigrants.
Venizelos is a Greek coffee manufactured in the United States and sold around the world. The beans are finely ground by stone.
This coffee is a lighter medium roast that produces a creamy cup of coffee. It makes a strong flavored coffee with a rich aroma.
Nektar Greek Coffee
- Organic certified
- Not super strong like traditional Greek coffee
Nektar is a specialty coffee brand that offers a traditional Greek coffee blend. It’s organic certified and micro-roasted in Greece.
The beans are carefully selected to ensure quality and are medium-roasted. This coffee might be a good option if you’re looking for a Greek coffee that isn’t too weak or too strong. While boiling, the coffee gives off a pleasant aroma.
It has a smooth finish with a nice flavor and is low in acidity. This might be a good option if you want a milder Greek coffee that’s easy on the stomach.
- Can be used for a variety of coffee-making methods
- Rich and creamy
- Aroma lacks intensity
Nescafé Classic offers instant authentic Greek coffee. This instant version gives you more variety in how you can prepare Greek coffee. You can prepare it the traditional way or use this as a normal instant coffee.
It produces a strong cup of coffee with low acidity. It doesn’t have a super intense aroma, but it is rich and creamy. This specific product is also great for making Greek frappés.
Overview: Best Greek Coffee Brands
Greek coffee is an unfiltered coffee-making process that’s been an important part of Greek culture for centuries. The method used to make Greek coffee involves boiling water and ground coffee, rather than brewing it.
This method creates a strong cup of coffee complemented by a nice aroma and creamy richness. You can hand grind your favorite beans down to a powder-like consistency, or you can use Greek coffee brands that already come pre-ground.
We suggest trying the Nektar Greek coffee traditional blend. The beans are organically sourced and micro-roasted. It’s a medium roast, which makes a well-balanced cup of coffee. It also gives off a pleasant aroma and has a nice creamy finish that Greek coffee is known for.