Hosting a party is a gift that keeps on giving. There is no doubt when you host, the stronger your relationships build. In its own way, hosting expresses how much you enjoy the company at your table, and how comfortable you are in sharing your most authentic self with them. As Aristotle famously mused, we, humans, are social animals. Thriving on social interactions and strong bonds with family and friends. Dated from intimate afternoon tea parties of the 1800s to modern day brunches, we have come a long way and so has hosting.
There’s power in coming together, and this power fuels hope. Simply because there’s no limit to what we can achieve when minds meet. Coming together has the potential to catalyst an enriching change – to the world around us and our lives, individually. Which is why, across cultures, many are coming together to strengthen their connections through unique hosting practices.
Kenya’s encouragement served hot with a tale to tell
Till this very date, men, women and children in Kenya come together over kahawa chunga or kahawa tamu – a diluted version of the original “kahawa chungu” coffee – to share stories and life events. The sharing in practice is intended as a support, and the sense of being in this together. Originating from when, Arab men sat around together at the end of a hard day’s work, sipping on concentrated black coffee, sharing their stories, after their trade ships docked at the yard.
Turkey’s toast to intellect and good fortune
A lot like Ethiopians, Turks have traditional coffee-making rituals that are still passed down and practiced through generations, like this one. Along the country-side, socializing over a strong cup of coffee - “milk of chess players and thinkers” – as they call it, is a norm even today. Cups of coffee with sediment at the bottom are to be turned upside down, so the sediments can fall and present themselves for a coffee-reading done by the fortune-tellers. Brewed with finely ground coffee beans, water and sometimes sugar, the traditional coffee is served in small porcelain cups called “kahve finjani.”
Ethiopia’s invitation to mindfulness
The Ethiopian coffee tradition, steeped in ceremoniousness, begins from the brewing to the serving. At each step invoking a certain mindfulness – to respect and revive relationships. The two- to three-hour ceremony is a social event with the family or when inviting friends over, involving roasting and grinding of the coffee beans (by hand) and boiling the strong concoction in a vessel similar to those used in Turkish-coffee making. Even the manner in which the coffee is poured, matters. The first cup, served to the eldest in the room as a sign of respect is called “abol” – welcoming and signifying the transformation of the spirit. The second, called “tona” is intended to continue this transformation. The third cup, called “baraka” is the bestowing of blessings.
In bringing people together, these practices have and continue to be nourishment to the mind and soul. It is in moments like these and for moments like these that we exist. We believe and therefore we do, make great designs that create greater experiences. And if experiences like these could be any better – then why not!
With that said, we would like to welcome you to an experiential world of hosting with Shazé. It’s time to revive what was routine, to a ritual, and take the time to appreciate these finer things in life.