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Arabian Business: 24 Karat Coffee

Arabian Business: 24 Karat Coffee

What Cypher offers in Dubai, where gourmets come, and young people from Europe and Asia learn the secrets of producing coffee with Swiss precision. It is said that access to a professorship or a doctorate requires the provision of scientific knowledge beyond what is known and recorded, and with this criterion it can be said that the founder of Cypher enjoys this quality, which includes extensive knowledge of all the subtleties of coffee from its cultivation to its sip.

24 karat coffee

In one of the Al Quoz streets in Dubai, among many back alleys, many people flocked to this small sub-street, and it became clear to me that their destination was the same as the place I was going to meet with a journalist with the young Mohammed Maree, founder of Code, who enjoys expert knowledge of everything related to coffee and its secrets.

Not all of these customers were customers. For example, there was a young man coming from a European country who came for training in evaluating the quality of coffee beans and the stages of production at the highest levels of quality. The company offers CQI-accredited training with comprehensive training for all phases of coffee quality cycles, and educational materials covering all certifications such as the Q Arabica Grader to the coffee production cycles for consumption.

24 karat coffeeWhen I spoke with information from a recent book and read a few paragraphs of it, it became clear to me that Muhammad had read the entire book before me and as soon as it was published.

24 karat coffee

In addition to a large array of certificates of experience, study and training in coffee production that we talked about, near panels displaying all aspects of coffee production and flavors. Despite all my passion for coffee and my experiences in tasting it, it became clear to me that what I know is not worth much compared to what Muhammad excels at.

And in the warehouse where the coffee is stored, you can see great care for storing coffee in an atmosphere where the temperature and humidity are controlled, and when he asked me to inhale the smell of one of the green coffee bags, the smell was amazing and did not die to the smell of green coffee that I know, the special preservation method preserves the smell of coffee Distinguished with great care.

At the end of my tour, I accompanied Muhammad to see the progress of work in a nearby building that will serve as an academy for training in coffee production and assessing its quality before supplying it and all aspects of coffee production and processing.

It is from this atmosphere that the Cypher roaster offers the finest organic coffee to the consumer and the companies from the retailers, and the taste was enough to make me doubt that I have been drinking coffee all my life, as this has nothing to do with the commercial coffee we are familiar with.

After looking at the stages of blending coffee and exploring the various elements of each process, the difference is evident for coffee connoisseurs and anyone interested in knowing what they drink each morning.

The founder of Cypher confirms his company's commitment to the import of coffee beans with fair trade practices, as most quantities are purchased from reliable suppliers, agricultural associations and, in some cases, directly from farmers. Cypher Roastery offers a wide range of sustainable coffees of trusted origin and certified by international organizations such as Rainforest Alliance, UTZ and the US Department of Agriculture.

The company recently launched a new sustainability initiative entitled Nabtih, as a commitment to provide the best products and follow the highest ethical sustainable practices in its work. The initiative revolves around making positive changes in the various stages of the product's supply chain, from the process of planting and harvesting, through sorting and canning, to the methods of providing them to the consumer, and even recycling waste.

The roastery adopts many practices and initiatives that demonstrate its commitment to the issues and principles of sustainability, in an effort to motivate and encourage its customers to adopt actions and practices that contribute to making a positive change in society.

” “Shifra Roastery is committed to sustainable business practices that preserve natural resources. The Nabta Initiative is keen to support fair trade societies that preserve farmers’ rights and preserve the environment, with the aim of providing a decent and healthy life for future generations.”

Through this initiative, Cypher Roastery aims to motivate and raise awareness of recycling, and encourage customers to grow food themselves for their own consumption. Cypher sets an example in terms of promoting smart consumption and sustainable use of natural resources, as it offers beneficial solutions such as reusing the burlap bags used to transport coffee beans by transforming them into pots for growing herbs such as basil, rosemary, oregano, mint and others. Cypher Roastery also owns a brand for olive oil bearing the same name as the initiative "Nabtih", which it imports from Palestine. As with coffee and other products, the olive oil code is imported directly from the farm, to ensure that the olives are picked manually and the oil is extracted from them exclusively by pressing.

Mohamed Merhi added: “Experiments have shown that people’s level of awareness of the value and importance of food increases when they grow their own plants at home for personal consumption. Although their yield from home cultivation may be very small compared to their consumption, the amount of time and effort people dedicate ( and children in particular) for farming and the amount of water needed to grow these plants helps them better understand the time, effort and resources devoted to producing the food they buy and eat, and increase their sense of responsibility and awareness of food waste.”

It is noteworthy that Cypher launched her all-natural fruit snacks brand under the name Snackwell, in order to support coffee growers; It imports from them the fruits they grow in their fields other than coffee and use them in the products of the Snackwell brand, in order to help the coffee farmers in the coffee seasons and beyond, and provide them with various sources of income throughout the year to support their families.


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Cypher: A Sustainable Haven For Coffee Enthusiasts in Dubai

Cypher: A Sustainable Haven For Coffee Enthusiasts in Dubai

Operating through their state of the art roastery located in Al Quoz, Cypher is on a mission to change the way people consume coffee. This mission starts with sourcing the highest standard of organic coffee beans, providing exceptional service to retailers, and ensuring that people in the Middle East and beyond can enjoy some of the best coffee that the world has to offer. After all, coffee is a daily part of the lives of millions of people.

Cypher began with a real life story born from a real need. It is a story of nostalgia, of searching for quality of life, and of a journey to reproduce an ancient and beautiful coffee experience in the Middle East. By roasting beans in the UAE and introducing a no-compromise approach to exceptional products, processes and services, Cypher is disrupting the restrictive structures in the industry and opens its doors to educate both retailers and consumers on good quality coffee, and in this way improve their daily lives.

Coffee lovers and enthusiasts can visit the roastery to witness the process of coffee blends being prepared from start to finish first hand and gain an insight into the various elements at every stage.

Cypher’s coffee beans are sourced through fair trade practices as most of their coffees are procured from trusted ethical suppliers, farmer co-ops, and in some cases directly from the farmers, offering up a wide variety of sustainable coffee that is traceable and certified by internationally recognized organization such as rainforest alliance, UTZ certified, and USDA organic.

“We endeavor to nurture other likeminded people and businesses and give back to the community and world around us every single day,” commented Mohamad Merhi, co-founder of Cypher.

Cypher reinforces its commitment to do better and be better through their initiative Nabtih, a name derived from the word plant in Arabic. Adopting practices that embrace changes around the supply chain throughout all stages of a product’s life cycle, including planting, harvesting, handling, packaging, serving, and the repurposing of byproducts. Endeavoring to inspire their customers, Cypher encourages positive action in communities by demonstrating its commitment to sustainability.

Mohammad Merhi also added, “Cypher is firmly committed to sustainable business practices that preserve natural resources. This initiative aims to support fair trade and agricultural communities that preserve the rights of farmers and conserve the environment to provide fair and healthy lives for the generations to come.”

Through this initiative, Cypher aims to inspire people and raise awareness around recycling and encouraging their customers to plant their own food. Leading by example, Cypher promotes smarter consumption and sustainable utilization of their planet’s resources including the development of resourceful hacks such as repurposing jute bags used to transport coffee beans into pots for edible herbal plants such as Basel, Rosemary, Oregano, and Mint. In addition, Cypher stocks products such as an olive oil from Palestine that holds the same name of the initiative “Nabtih”. Like their coffee and other products, Cypher only source the oil from the farm directly. The olives are handpicked, and the olive oil is extracted by pressing.

Earlier this year, Cypher also launched their new 100% natural fruit-based snacks called Snackwell. With the wellbeing of coffee-producing communities in mind, Snackwell products were developed and are sourced from those coffee producers who harvest fruits alongside their renowned coffee beans to generate other sources of revenue in order to sustain their families and livelihood. 

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The Silsal Coffee Guide

The Silsal Coffee Guide

Whether you prefer a latte, americano or cortado, there’s a type of coffee for everyone. But the world of coffee is changing every day, and sometimes it can be hard to keep up. Today, we’re exploring the most popular caffeine-fixes out there, and spilling he beans on the best type of beans for each brew, with recommendations from Cypher Urban Roastery’s founder, Mohamad Merhi.


Hailing from Italy, espressos are made by combining high-pressure steam and grounded coffee beans. The final product is a thick, high-caffeine coffee, which can be served solo, or used as the foundation for lattes and macchiatos.

Cypher Urban Roastery Recommends:

Il-Finomeno from Brazil (Flavors: Roasted almond and creamy chocolate fudge notes, accented by bitter-sweet finish)


The most popular coffee out there, lattes are made using a shot of espresso and steamed milk, and about a centimetre of foam.

Cypher Urban Roastery Recommends:

Bonanza from Honduras (Flavors: Full-bodied caramelized chocolate, with a sweet, nutty aftertaste)


A double shot of espresso, the doppio is perfect for those early mornings.


Arguably the second-most popular coffee around, cappuccinos are very similar to lattes, but are made with more foam than steamed milk. Often, they’re topped with a sprinkle of cocoa powder or cinnamon.

Cypher Urban Roastery Recommends:

Rise from Guatemala (Flavors: Round bodied best-seller, with hints of toasted almond, chocolate and toffee, with piquant acidy)



This espresso-based drink features a double shot of espresso, with a dollop of steamed milk. Super simple, Macchiatos were designed to showcase the rich flavours of the espresso.

Café au Lait

Perfect for minimalists and purists alike, café au lait combines drip coffee with a splash of warm milk.

Cypher Urban Roastery Recommends:

Chanzo from Uganda (Flavors: A rich, creamy body complemented by notes of juicy berry, and mango, with a sweet, smooth finish.)


Rich, full-bodied and unique, Turkish coffee is prepared using finely ground coffee beans without filtering, and brewed in a coffee pot, atop a stove.

Cypher Urban Roastery Recommends:

Khial (Flavors: Vanilla base with spicy, rich fruitcake notes, a syrupy body and sweet molasses finish)


The perfect marriage of caffeine-packed espresso and warm, steamed milk. Cortado’s are creamy enough to counter the espresso’s acidity.


A ristretto, Italian for short, is a concentrated espresso shot, made with half the amount of water. It’s known for its sweet flavour, compared to the traditionally bitter espresso.

Cypher Urban Roastery Recommends:

Gosa from Ethiopia (Flavors: Smooth, silky body with floral aromas, notes of hibiscus tea, strawberry, apricot and dark plum, with a honey-like finish)


Simple and classic, black coffee (also known as café noir) combines water and coffee without any milk. It should be served plain, without any added flavors like as honey or cream.

Flat White

This Aussie brew is basically a cappuccino, sans the foam or chocolate sprinkle. Think of it as an espresso with steamed milk.

Cypher Urban Roastery Recommends:

Tamara from Colombia (Flavors: A medium-high body, balanced with hints of caramel, dried fruit and chocolatey finish)


One for the chocolate lovers, a mocha is a chocolate-flavored espresso, with steamed milk and foam.

Cypher Urban Roastery Recommends:

Flavia from Brazil (Flavors: Creamy body accented with cacao nibs, floral notes, stone fruit, and black tea, with a long, smooth aftertaste)


Americanos consist of an espresso shot diluted in hot water, transforming a small shot into a large cup of joe.

Celebrating International Coffee Day

To celebrate of International Coffee Day, we’ve teamed up with Dubai-based specialty roastery, Cypher Urban Roastery. Enjoy 15% off coffee at Cypher Urban Roastery with every purchase on on Oct 1st!

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Comment: Hotel Coffee Culture

Comment: Hotel Coffee Culture

The relationship between coffee, hospitality, and the Arabs is historic, intertwined and complex. It is said that coffee was first discovered centuries ago in the forests of the Ethiopian plateau. It was eventually cultivated for mass use in Yemen, and Arab traders were directly involved in the commercialisation of this lovely fruit. Today, one of the widest spread coffee species is Arabica which serves as a reminder of the historical relationship between the Arabian Peninsula and coffee.

The Arabs pride themselves on their generosity and hospitality and with time, coffee has become one of the main tools that defined Arab hospitality. East to west, north, and south, as a guest within the Arab world you will almost surely be served coffee. The differences in how it is prepared and served reflect the mosaic of cultures and peoples, which make up the Arab world. In the Levant, it is roasted darker and brewed in an ‘ibrik’ as Turkish coffee, while within the GCC countries it is often roasted lighter and brewed with cardamom.

The dynamism between hospitality and the Arabs is noticeable within the hotel industry, especially in the GCC countries. Hotels in Dubai are widely recognised to be among the best in the world with a reputation for world-class hospitality, service and quality products. 

Compared to other regions in the world, food and beverage offerings at hotels play a more essential role as most of the restaurants in the region are typically situated within the grounds of a hotel (sometimes due to alcohol-related local regulations). This has created an opportunity for hotels to position themselves as the primary location for culinary experiences. As a result, this has led to a higher contribution of F&B revenue for hotels in the region relative to other revenue drivers such as room revenue.

These factors highlight the importance of F&B outlets within a hotel and the importance of not neglecting the quality of these products and services. A drop in quality will eventually impact the revenue potential and lead to a reduction in footfall and reputational damage especially in highly saturated hotel markets such as Dubai where the customer has many options. Customer retention and satisfaction is key.

In most cases for hotels, coffee ranks second to only alcohol in terms of beverage profit generation and in some cases actually lead in terms of levels of consumption. Within the region, there is a culture of conducting business meetings/deals within hotel lobby lounge cafés and usually, coffee is consumed within these settings.

Unfortunately, most of the coffee being served regionally in the hotels is of lower quality due to various reasons ranging from budget constraints to poor staff training.

Further exasperating the situation is the structure of the supply agreements between coffee suppliers and hotels. The typical scenario usually entails espresso machine distributors/suppliers signing contracts with hotels where they commit to supply the coffee machines for free in return for a commitment from the hotels to purchase the roasted coffee from them exclusively at a specified price per kilogram over a period of time.

Since the machine supplier has to recoup their investment from the machines, which they supplied for free, they are forced to make their profits from the roasted coffee, which the hotel purchases throughout the term of the contract. Unfortunately, this leads to supplying lower quality coffee in order to ensure the supplier’s profitability.

For some hotels, this may be justifiable as they are willing to sacrifice coffee quality to save on upfront payments. This is very prevalent in hotels where the procurement department has the final say or at times where overall revenues in hotels are dropping and cost cutting is the priority. The issue is that there will come a time where cost reduction will negatively impact value added by these services and both the customer and the hotel will suffer as a result.

One solution to this problem is to continue the relationship with existing suppliers in free coffee locations but allow for variations in the supply agreement that paves the way for hotels to choose local coffee suppliers/roasters that provide artisanal roasted higher quality coffee in locations where coffee is sold (such as cafes) in order to justify these costs for the higher quality offering.

This will add value in three ways. First, the quality of coffee will definitely improve which will hopefully result in higher sales. Second, this will also positively contribute to promoting local production which in today’s environmentally aware market, is becoming more and more significant. Finally, this allows hotels to benefit from and participate in the speciality coffee culture which has been quickly growing around the world.

Consumers’ profiles and appetite are changing rapidly and in order to align your product and service offerings with market requirements, being proactive rather than reactive is critical to add value and help maintain your market position.

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