Coffee was an exceptional part of my childhood.
Growing up in Ethiopia, my Mother performed the traditional ritual of the Ethiopian coffee ceremony several times a day. The ceremony starts when my mom places a handful of green coffee beans onto a small roasting pan and places the pan on burning charcoal. Soon after that, the coffee beans start to make a jumping and popping sound that I still remember to this day. The smoke and the intense aroma of the roasting beans also begin to fill the whole house. Our invited neighbors start to arrive, greeting each other warmly as they sit around my Mother’s coffee ensemble.
As the coffee starts brewing in a small clay pot, my Sisters and I sit in the corner and quietly watch the ceremony. We know this is a special moment. We know this is a kid-free environment where there is no playing and running around. We’re not allowed to move from our place except to serve the coffee to the guests. Even when we speak to each other, it is in whispers and hushed tones, ensuring that we don’t disturb our elders discussing their issues over sips of coffee.
The ceremony lasts around two hours and has three drinking stages. The first cup of coffee is called Abol, which means first, the second one is named Tona, which means two, and the third and final serving is called Baraka – which stands for blessing. In between those three stages, my Mother pours powdered incense onto the burning charcoal, and a divine smoke fills the room along with the mixed aroma of incense and brewing coffee. It is a truly magical moment.
Into adulthood, my heartfelt wish was to capture and recreate the essence of that beautiful coffee ceremony. And five years ago, I had an opportunity to promote a local coffee roaster company in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. That was the first time I saw a giant coffee roaster. That project was enormous, and the roasting process was fascinating to me. From that point on, I began to study the best methods of roasting coffee beans and researched what worked and what had some room for improvement. My primary mission was to create the best cup of coffee in the world. But then, life happened, and I was forced to put my dreams on hold.
One day, I walked into a new coffee shop in Washington, D.C., and saw a giant coffee roaster behind the cashier’s desk. I could not believe my eyes as the roaster looked very similar to the one I saw back in Ethiopia. That moment also took me back to the memory of my mom’s beautiful coffee ceremony. So, I turned around and looked for the owner of the shop, who was working on his laptop in one corner. We started a conversation, and I learned that his giant coffee roaster could run up to 19 hours per day but that he was only running it for 3 hours per day. And then I told him my story and gave him a breakthrough idea – which was for me to use his coffee roaster whenever he was not using it. He agreed.
And that’s how Meti Brew Coffee Beans was born.
And when you get your bag of Meti today, you will be one step closer to sipping your best cup of coffee!