By Rabia Iclal Turan
ANKARA (AA) – A variety of tastes and recipes are awaiting coffee lovers at a three-day annual coffee festival that began in Turkish capital Ankara on Friday.
At the Bilkent Center, the seat of festival, coffee connoisseurs would also taste and discuss trends, design products amid musical performances and workshops.
The festival, now in its fourth year, brings together the leading brands and tastes with professional baristas from the region along with live music performances, seminars and workshops.
As many as 30,000 people are expected to attend the festival this year, Yasemin Karginlioglu, festival coordinator, told Anadolu Agency.
“We have 93 companies this year attending the festival with 900 people managing their booths,” she said.
Karginlioglu attributed popularity of this festival to increasing interest in the barista culture in Turkey.
“Festival’s aim is to bring coffee lovers and offer them different ways to brew coffee,” she added.
An 18-year old student, Sude Koc, said she has come to buy coffee beans, because she can try them before buying. Describing herself a coffee-addict, Koc said she was attending the festival first time to try a variety of beans.
A swashbuckler and a coffee-addict, Baran Akyuz, 39, has opened a stall at the festival. His stall, Rotasiz Cafe (Cafe without Course), is most popular stop for the coffee lovers at the festival.
Akyuz said that he has been traveling around Turkey for last 20 years to explore tastes of coffee.
“I have been living on the roads past 20 years in search of coffee tastes,” he told Anadolu Agency.
Akyuz said that he wants to continue traveling rest of his life around the world in search of coffee tastes.
A champion at the Pot and Pitcher contest, Koray Erdogdu, shared the tips on how to brew Turkish coffee. A coffee connoisseur, Erdogdu, said that he prefers fresh beans from Ethiopia for making coffee.
Sharing recipe for a good coffee, he said to prevent the coffee from getting lumpy, there is need to stirs water and coffee in a pot vigorously and then to wait for few minutes, so it does not lose its aroma.
Tas Kahve, famous cafe from Turkish resort town of Ayvalik in the western province of Mugla, is attending the festival third time. The cafe is offering Turkish Dibek coffee, loved by coffee lovers.
Recalling 500-year-old history of Tas Kahve, Manager Ferit Toprak said that Fatih Sultan Mehmet -- commonly known as Mehmed the Conqueror – was drinking this coffee every day. “This is a tradition from the Ottoman Empire,” he said.
Besides coffee, those attending the festival will be regaled by the concerts of famous Turkish singers, Feridun Duzagac, Mirkelam and Vega, during the three-day festival.