Prizes of up to AED 125,000 for winners of ‘Gahwa Championships’ 2019

Gahwa practitioners and enthusiasts to compete in Abu Dhabi in December 2019

Abu Dhabi, UAE, October 31 2019: The first ‘Gahwa Championships’, to be held in Abu Dhabi on 9–11 December, will offer prizes of up to AED 125,000 for the most skilled Gahwa practitioners and enthusiasts.


Organised by the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) to celebrate the heritage of Gahwa (Arabic coffee) across the region, the inaugural championships will take place at the premier F&B and hospitality fair SIAL Middle East 2019, and will feature five categories to test contestants’ skills and knowledge. 


Prizes of AED 125,000 and AED 40,000 will be available for the winners and runners-up of the two ‘Sane’ Al Gahwa Championship’ categories for Light Roast and Medium/Dark Roast. These categories will challenge participants to achieve the best Gahwa using their own roast preferences, whilst also testing their knowledge of the history and traditions associated with Gahwa. Using traditional utensils, the competitors will be judged on their grinding and boiling of the beans, the taste and quality of the final finjan of Gahwa, as well as their poise and etiquette in serving.


A further two prizes of AED 25,000 each will be awarded to the winners of the ‘Gahwa Roaster Award’ categories in Light Roast and Medium/Dark Roast. The competitors will be evaluated in blind tastings by a specialist panel of judges who will examine flavour, body, acidity, sweetness, balance and aftertaste. The participants will be assessed on their roasting skills as well as their choice of beans and their origin. The Gahwa Roaster Awards will be open to individuals and representatives of roasteries, with the prestigious titles of 2019 Winner of Gahwa Roaster Award – Light Roast category and 2019 Winner of Gahwa Roaster Award – Medium/Dark Roast category.


A prize of AED 20,000 will also be awarded to the winner of the ‘Gahwa Beverage Concept Award’, which will recognise the creator of the finest and most innovative hot or cold Gahwa-based beverage. As well as the taste and appearance, participants will be assessed on their approach, technique, originality and creativity. The beverage concept category is open to all and offers the prestigious title of 2019 Winner of Gahwa Beverage Concept Award.


“Gahwa is an essential element of our culture and is symbolic of our tradition of hospitality,” said Norah Alkhamis, Head of Research at DCT Abu Dhabi’s Cultural Planning and Development Department. “By offering prizes that recognise the various skills involved in the preparation of Gahwa, the Championships will celebrate this rich heritage whilst featuring the diverse customs and traditions that are associated with Gahwa in the UAE and across the region.”


Registration for the five categories of the Gahwa Championships is now open. All applicants must register before Thursday 31 October 2019. Visit to register and for full details of the event.


About the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi

The Department of Culture and Tourism conserves and promotes the heritage and culture of Abu Dhabi emirate and leverages them in the development of a world-class, sustainable destination of distinction, which enriches the lives of visitors and residents alike. The organisation manages the emirate’s tourism sector and markets the destination internationally through a wide range of activities aimed at attracting visitors and investment. Its policies, plans and programs relate to the preservation of heritage and culture, including protecting archaeological and historical sites and to developing museums, including Zayed National Museum, Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, and the Louvre Abu Dhabi. DCT – Abu Dhabi supports intellectual and artistic activities and cultural events to nurture a rich cultural environment and honor the emirate’s heritage. A key role is to create synergy in the destination’s development through close co-ordination with its wide-ranging stakeholder base.

About the Gahwa Championships:

The Gahwa Championships is the first regional Arabic coffee competition of its kind. Held in Abu Dhabi and designed to challenge participants in all aspects of the Gahwa tradition, the Championships represent the world’s premier celebration of this most vital aspect of Arab culture and hospitality.

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