Turkish Coffee: Kurukahveci Mehmet Efendi

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… Thanks to Mehmet Efendi, Turkish coffee lovers were able to enjoy the convenience of buying ready roasted and ground coffee, and he soon became known as “Kurukahveci Mehmet Efendi”, or Mehmet Efendi, vendor of roasted and ground coffee.

Kurukahveci Mehmet Efendi, who was born in 1857 in Fatih, Istanbul and studied at the Süleymaniye Medresesi (the school attached to the Süleymaniye Mosque complex), began to work in his father’s shop on Tahmis Street, Beyoglu. Mehmet Efendi took over the family business in 1871 and began roasting raw coffee beans, grinding them in mortars and selling roasted and ready-ground Turkish coffee to his customers. Soon Tahmis Street was filled with the rich aroma of freshly roasted coffee. Thanks to Mehmet Efendi, coffee lovers were able to enjoy the convenience of buying ready roasted and ground coffee, and he soon became known as “Kurukahveci Mehmet Efendi”, or Mehmet Efendi, vendor of roasted and ground coffee.

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After he passed away in 1931, the business passes to his three sons: Hasan Selahattin Bey, Hulusi Bey and Ahmet Rıza Bey. The family formally took “Kurukahveci” as their last name in 1934. His oldest son recognized the importance of the international market and decided to become active abroad. Thus, Turkish coffee began to be promoted abroad as well as in the domestic market.

Mehmet Efendi’s youngest son Ahmet Bey, who was educated abroad, was inspired to take steps to modernise the firm and invest in advertising. In 1933, he had the company logo designed, which is still used today, and also company was promoted through posters and calendars, which was a revolutionary media attempt for the period. Then Kurukahveci Mehmet Efendi began to distribute their products via the firms own fleet of automobiles and they opened new branches.

Today Kurukahveci Mehmet Efendi is run by Mehmet Efendi’s grandchildren and what began as a small family business on Tahmis Street in 1871 has now grown into a global brand.

Kurukahveci Mehmet Efendi website

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