I was at a Middle Eastern restaurant and ordered a cup of their "Middle Eastern coffee" (perhaps something akin to Turkish coffee?), which seemed to have some sort of spice and sugar added to it. (The latter was significant only because I generally take hot coffee without sugar.) Now, after a few sips, I found that the coffee was becoming a bit gritty, presumably from some coffee grounds.

Given the general quality of the restaurant, I wouldn't be surprised if this was just bad quality. Thus: is this grittiness something to be expected from such a style of coffee, or was this probably just bad processing?


Generally, no, it should not be overly gritty. The grind itself should be very fine, finer than an espresso grind. Secondly after the coffee is brewed, it's generally covered and left for a while so that the coffee grounds settle to the bottom of the pot. Then, when being poured, it should be poured carefully so the settled grounds aren't disturbed and end up in the cup.

If you don't let it settle, you'll have a lot of the coffee grinds floating in the cup and it'll have a powdery texture (although it should be overly gritty given the fineness of the grind). You'll generally still get a little of the coffee grinds in the cup but it shouldn't be a small amount and it should settle to the bottom.

Generally, the coffee is unsweetened (as many take it unsweetened) but it is commonly spiced with cardamon. The host will generally sweeten each cup to taste or will provide a small bowl of sugar allowing drinkers to sweeten the coffee to their own taste.

  • Accepting this because this sounds pretty much in line with what I read on other sites. – Maroon May 14 '15 at 8:18

Utterly to be expected - the coffee is made with coffee grounds, sugar and water in a small tapered pot. There is no filter. If you want filtered coffee, order something else. There should be grounds on the bottom of the cup. Unless you like grounds, minimal stirring and swirling will help to keep them down there.

This is the coffee that is sometimes described as Strong as [x], Black as [y], Sweet as [z] where x, y, and z are place holders for one of love, hell and death, permuted as suits the mood.

  • It was odd to me in that from, say, the Wikipedia descriptions, I expected a bit more homogeneity in the coffee -- while it wouldn't have been surprising to see some grounds near the bottom, it was unpleasant to see any so close to the top. (Lesson learned though: for a number of reasons I doubt I'm going to that restaurant again.) – Maroon May 3 '15 at 2:11

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