Before the 6th century
Coffee originated in Ethiopia on the African continent, where locals had the habit of chewing coffee fruits for an energy boost before the 6th century.
13th to16th century –Türkiye
In the 13th century, Ethiopia invaded Yemen and introduced coffee to the Arab world, where it became the main social drink.
In 1536, the Ottoman Empire occupied Yemen and the first batch of Yemeni coffee was exported to Europe from the small ancient port of Mocha.
In 1699, the Dutch East India Company smuggled coffee beans into Indonesia and Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) for planting purposes.
16th to 17th century – Europe
From the 16th to 17th century, Venetian merchants and the Dutch who were the maritime overlords at the time, introduced coffee to Europe, where the drink immediately became fashionable among the upper class and was dubbed ‘black gold’.
In 1645, Caffè Florian, the world’s first coffee shop, opened in Venice.
17th century – Macao
Meanwhile, coffee reached the Far East in Macao along with Portuguese seafarers, making this city the first stop for coffee to be introduced Eastwards.
19th century – planted
In the early 19th century, the ouvidor of Macao, Miguel de Arriaga, invested in coffee planting in Timor (now East Timor) with funds from Macao.
In the late 19th century, the Macao Public Works Bureau planted 426 coffee seedlings for urban landscaping.
With the European coffee culture deeply rooted in Macao, the drink has been introduced to local large hotels, cafés and even food stalls and has become part of the daily life of the local people. No other drink but coffee can best represent the city.
21st century –Modern Culture of Coffee in Macao
Nowadays, there are a great number of shops specialised in coffee brewing, contributing to a new trend of coffee drinking.
To experience the Southern European flavour in Macao, you must have a cup of coffee here, be it a cup of artisanal ‘bica’ coffee or one prepared in a clay pot, otherwise you may never have really been to Macao.
20th century – Chip Seng Coffee Co. Ltd, Macao
During the reign of Emperor Daoguang in the Qing Dynasty (before 1839), coffee was introduced to Guangzhou via Macao and began to spread to the main cities of China due to the flow of personnel, becoming a novel drink.
It is also worth mentioning that next to this building is the former location of the Chip Seng Coffee Co. Limited, a time-honoured coffee shop that operated for over 80 years.
Coordinator：Pauline, Choi Pui Leng