Arabic coffee (Gahwa) is integral to Arab hospitality, and the traditions associated with it represent a key element in the region’s heritage. Its preparation and serving comprise a symbolic act of generosity, marked by elaborate customs. Such is its significance to Arab culture, Gahwa was inscribed on the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2015.
In view of its central role in the region, the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi will pioneer the first Gahwa Championships in the UAE capital in December 2019. Building on the success of its Bait Al Gahwa initiative, which aims to document and protect Gahwa as an essential element of Emirati culture, the Championships will test the knowledge and practice of competitors from across the region in areas such as the heritage of Gahwa; bean selection and roasting; and Gahwa preparation and serving. The Championships will also feature categories specific to roasting as well as a beverage concept award.