I’m not a coffee fan, I don’t need to have my morning coffee to wake up but ever since I moved to my new house and got a brewing coffee machine, I’ve enjoyed experimenting with different types of coffee beans. I also got a Nespresso and a Barista machine which I try from time to time as well, especially when I have friends or guests who are coffee enthusiasts. Needless to say, I still don’t know much about coffee and Starbucks is always a safe choice for me when it comes to coffee, but I’ll eventually get there one day and businesses like Kaleicoffee.com are supposed to make it easier for me.
Kaleicoffee is a Lebanese specialty coffee company that gathers some of the best coffee beans from around the world, fly them home and roast them in small batches to ensure their coffee is always the freshest. Their aim is to provide coffee lovers in Lebanon with high-quality coffee and facilitate the delivery process through an online platform (and offline outlets). I was telling a friend, who’s a long-time coffee enthusiast, about Kaleicoffee and he was surprised that third wave coffee movement is picking up in Lebanon and loved the website.
Third wave coffee has been trending for quite some time in the world and “refers to a current movement to produce high-quality coffee, and consider coffee as an artisanal foodstuff, like wine, rather than a commodity”. Of course it’s more expensive as it focuses on things like artisanal and micro roastings, but it’s still affordable and worth a try.
Kaleicoffee is mainly for coffee enthusiasts but if you’re like me and wish to learn more about coffee, then you will find the website and the people behind it very helpful. I first met with them in Faqra as they had a stand during the summer festival and were about to launch kaleicoffee.com. I got to try their iced coffee rum drink with a delicious pecan pie slice.
Kaleicoffee is currently offering two kinds of Ethioipan coffee, Yirgacheffe and Limu Organic. You can order online (or buy from selected oulets like Aziz) and choose the grind level (beans, coarse, medium, medium fine, fine, extra fine). They also sell hardware from Japanese Bamboo utensils, paper bags, ceramic poor-over and others.
During her radio interview with Rima Njeim, Lebanese Singer Najwa Karam stated that she was a victim of domestic violence but she “deserved it” and thought it “helped her”. I guess that explains her tweet last year on that same topic.
Maybe we shouldn’t expect much from a Hilter fan after all, but I’m just surprised that a statement like that from a popular singer like her doesn’t cause a public outrage.
Fares is a little Syrian boy who used to sell flowers in Hamra and was loved by everyone. Fares came back to his hometown in Syria a while ago but was unfortunately killed by an airstrike (as per his brother). Children are unfortunately paying the highest price for Syria’s war and there are hundreds if not thousands of children like Fares out there.
Lebanese graffiti/street artist Yazan Halwani decided to paint Fares “on a building in Dortmund (Germany) during the Huna/K festival, so that he can keep on spreading his positive vibe, and charming pedestrians to buy flowers from him”. His only regret is that he didn’t paint Fares while he was still alive.
I loved the initiative and the mural is amazing! Thank you Yazan!
Hayda Baytak are teaming up with Virgin Megastore to provide students in an underprivileged orphanage with over 300 bags before the beginning of the 2015-2016 academic year. All you have to do is the following:
– Grab any used backpack you have and place it in the designated boxes at any Virgin Megastore branch! It’s as simple as that and you will get a discount on new bags as well.
The campaign will end in two weeks and they still need around 250 bags! I’m sure we all have school bags that we are not using anymore, so let’s try to make an extra effort and head to the nearest Virgin branch to drop them.
I think we can easily get the 250 bags and I’m more than willing to drop the bags for you if you don’t have time or don’t have any Virgin branch near you (They have branches in ABC Achrafieh, ABC Dbayeh, Beirut Souks, DownTown Beirut, City Mall, Tripoli and at the Beirut Airport).
The Lebanese Ministry of Culture has chosen George Khabbaz’s new movie “Waynon” to represent Lebanon at the Oscars. Waynon is about six Lebanese women representing three generations, each one still waiting for the man in her life who was kidnapped during the Lebanese Civil War and is still missing. The movie tackles a very sensitive topic that hasn’t been resolved yet. In fact, thousands of people who disappeared during the war in Lebanon and its aftermath are still missing today. The government has done nothing to clarify the fate of the missing persons, and the families are still waiting.
“Waynon” was written by Georges Khabbaz and directed by Naji Bechara, Jad Beyrouthy, Zeina Makki, Tarek Korkomaz, Christelle Ighniades, Maria Abdel Karim and Salim Habr (All NDU Graduates). “Waynon” was awarded Film of the Year Award at the Lebanese Film Festival. This is the second movie that Khabbaz is involved in that makes it to the Oscars, after Ghadi last year.
Lebanon has already submitted 11 films for the Oscars but never got a nomination. Let’s hope we do get one this time!
PS: You can find [here] the list of foreign-language movies that Waynon is competing against this year.
I spotted two billboards (Arabic & English) this morning and found a Facebook page as well. I’m hoping this is not a lame campaign because the hashtags (#HardToBelieve #صعبة_تتصدق) are quite good.
Here are few things that are #HardToBelieve in Lebanon as well:
– A Hekmeh Riyadi game without a fight.
– A Wedding convoy that doesn’t block the highway.
– A restaurant that doesn’t serve Arguile.
– Finding a table at Zaatar W Zeit between 2 and 5am on weekends.
– A restaurant/pub with a self-parking service not a valet.
According to Ogero’s July 2015 report, there are 3,638,051 internet users in Lebanon as of December 2014, out of which 2,505,875 mobile internet users. The internet penetration is 86% which puts Lebanon in 4th position regionally after Bahrain, UAE and Qatar. Unfortunately, the speeds and quotas are still lousy but things are moving in the right way hopefully especially after the fiber optics joint announcement done by the Telecom Ministry and Ogero.
About the BB Commission:
The Broadband Commission for Digital Development was launched by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in response to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s call to step up efforts to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Established in May 2010, the Commission unites government leaders, top industry executives, thought leaders, policy pioneers, international agencies and organizations concerned with development.
As far as broadband is concerned, the 2015 State of Broadband report was released few days ago and Lebanon’s indicators were relatively good when compared to other Arab countries. Broadband is seen as foundation for sustainable development by the UN and an “affordable and effective broadband connectivity is a vital enabler of economic growth, social inclusion and environmental protection”.
Where does Lebanon stand in the Arab World?
– Lebanon ranked first (47th globally) in terms of fixed-broadband subscriptions per 100 inhabitants with an average of 22.8 over 100.
– Lebanon ranked 8th (57th globally) in terms of mobile broadband per 100 inhabitants with an average of 53.5 over 100. Kuwait ranked first regionally and third globally with 139.8 subscriptions per 100 inhabitants.
– 68.4% of households in Lebanon have internet (vs 98% in Qatar, 94% in KSA and 90.1% in UAE)
– 74.4% of Lebanese have used the internet in 2014 (vs 91.5% in Qatar, 91% in Bahrain and 90.4% in UAE).
While Lebanon’s indicators are promising, it is still important to get cheap, fast and abundant internet to all the Lebanese. Telecom Minister Boutros Harb was tweeting yesterday about the latest fiber optics updates and promised a monthly report to highlight the progress. Of course I’m not expecting fiber optics before 2-3 years but I’m still waiting for DSL services to be upgraded to VDSL2+ because we desperately need those especially in regions outside Beirut. I just applied for a DSL connection last week for my new house and I’m still waiting to see if I can get more than 1 MBPS.
These are four pictures showing the full moon at around 3:15 am, the transition to bloodmoon at around 5:30am, supermooon bloodmoon peak-time at 5:40am and another shot at 6 am. All were taken in Beirut by my friend Jimmy Ghazal.