What Does Turkish Coffee Taste Like? (Taste Profile)

Last Updated on February 21, 2022 by John Moretti

Coffee is a defining feature of many world cultures. Most countries have their own unique version of coffee or coffee brewing methods, and Turkish coffee falls into that category. Turkish coffee comes from Turkey, and the name refers to the particular preparation method of this coffee, but what does Turkish coffee taste like?

Turkish coffee is bold, strong, and very intense. The brew method highlights the intensity of the coffee flavors. Turkish coffee is spiced with cardamom, which adds another dimension of flavor and complexity. Turkish coffee tastes completely unique.

Turkish coffee is unlike any other type of coffee, regarding both brew method and taste. To properly understand the flavors of Turkish coffee, one must experience it first-hand. However, let’s take the time to try to describe the flavors present in Turkish coffee and explain what makes this coffee unique.

What Does Turkish Coffee Taste Like?

Turkish Coffee Flavor Profiles And Tasting Notes

Turkish coffee is something special. There is no other coffee in the world that is prepared in the same way, and there is no other coffee that tastes like Turkish coffee. This style of coffee owes its flavor to the coffee beans and spices used for brewing, as well as the brew method involved in making this coffee, but what are the flavors present in Turkish coffee?

Flavor Profile

When trying Turkish coffee for the very first time, the overwhelming flavor is that of very intense coffee and very forward spice flavors. At first, the flavor of Turkish coffee can be bewildering, but after a few sips, the palate adjusts, and the flavors become clearer.

Tasting Notes

Turkish Coffee and Turkish Delight

Turkish coffee tastes very strong, as it is typically brewed with very strong coffee using a brew method that extracts as much intensity from the coffee as possible. Turkish coffee is often spiced with cardamom seeds as well, which add spicey dimension to the flavor of the coffee.

The tasting notes of Turkish coffee depend on the coffee beans that are used for brewing, but the way this coffee is made highlights every subtle flavor within the beans if the coffee is brewed well.

Turkish coffee tastes strong and intense, even more so than espresso, and the added spices make the coffee aromatic and rich. The coffee will only get stronger and more intense the longer it remains in the cup, as Turkish coffee is served unfiltered, which means that the ground coffee remains in the cup while drinking.

This style of coffee is usually served with water to drink before the coffee to cleanse the palate and with something sweet to eat along with drinking the coffee. Traditional Turkish complimentary sweet flavors include Turkish delight and dried dates.

Where Do Turkish Coffee Flavors Come From?

Turkish coffee with cardamom and coffee beans

The shock that comes with the very first sip of Turkish coffee is present in everyone who tries this type of coffee for the first time. Many people wonder why this coffee tastes the way that it does and what makes it so intense?

The main reason for the intensity of this coffee is the way the coffee is ground before brewing and the fact that the coffee grinds are left in the cup to continue extracting while drinking.

Turkish coffee is brewed with coffee beans that are ground to be incredibly fine. The grind size is finer than that even of espresso and is best described as a powder. 

The tiny grind size of Turkish coffee means that the maximum amount of coffee bean surface area is exposed to the water during the brewing process, which results in the most intense extraction of coffee of any brewing method.

Turkish Coffee in Sand

The high extraction of very strong coffee beans accounts for the intense coffee flavor of Turkish coffee. Still, the other overwhelming flavor aspect is a result of the spices added to the coffee beans before grinding.

Cardamom seed pods are ground with coffee beans when preparing traditional Turkish coffee. Cardamom is made from the seeds of several plants and has a very complex flavor. This spice can taste fruity, nutty, piney, and very fresh, almost like mint. 

These flavors are present and intense in traditional Turkish coffee, and the addition of these spices is a prime reason why Turkish coffee tastes the way that it does.

What Makes Turkish Coffee Special?

Turkish Coffee

Turkish coffee tastes unique, completely unlike any other variety of coffee drink. The flavor of Turkish coffee is a direct result of several factors, but some attributes of Turkish coffee make it truly special and give it its intense and unique flavors.

Let’s examine some of the attributes of Turkish coffee that make it unique and contribute to the way this style of coffee tastes.

1. The Coffee Bean Grind

Bean Grind

One of the most defining features of Turkish coffee and one of the main contributing factors to the way this style of coffee tastes is how the coffee beans are ground before brewing Turkish coffee.

All coffee beans must be ground to brew coffee, but the beans used for brewing Turkish coffee are ground so fine that they almost become a powder. There is no coffee ground finer than Turkish coffee. 

The very fine grind allows the coffee to be extracted quickly and effectively. This means that Turkish coffee is not brewed for very long, and all of the flavors, caffeine, and intensity of the coffee beans are extracted very quickly.

This extraction is the main reason why Turkish coffee tastes so strong and intense.

2. The Spices

Turkish coffee and cardamom seeds

The intense coffee flavor of Turkish coffee is highlighted by the intense flavors of spices in traditional Turkish coffee.

The typical spice used in Turkish coffee is cardamom seeds, which are made from various plant seeds.

The cardamom flavor in Turkish coffee is strong and is the most striking flavor present when drinking this type of brew. The spice in Turkish coffee is a dominant flavor and significant contributor to how this beverage tastes.

3. The Brew Method

Turkish Coffee Brewing

The brew method is the last significantly defining feature in the flavor of all Turkish coffee, regardless of the beans or spices used. Turkish coffee is made with a unique brew method.

This coffee is brewed hot and quickly, and when it is poured into the cup, no filtration is used, which means that the coffee grounds are poured into the cup along with the beverage.

The fact that the coffee is brewed so quickly, extracted so thoroughly, and then left in the cup is a major contributing factor to the drink’s flavor. 

The longer the coffee is left in the cup, the stronger the coffee becomes because it is left to brew and extract further even in the cup. This is why all of the flavors are present in Turkish coffee, including the spice flavors and the coffee flavor of the beverage.


Turkish Delight

Turkish coffee is unique tasting coffee. This type of coffee tastes very strong and highly intense, and the brew method brings out all of the natural flavors present within the coffee beans.

This means that the origin flavors of the coffee are clearly noticed in Turkish coffee. Along with the intense coffee flavor, Turkish coffee is brewed with added cardamom, which further intensifies the flavors of this drink.

There is nothing else like Turkish coffee, and you will only truly understand its flavors when you experience it or yourself!