Shopping Cart


Your shopping bag is empty

Go to the shop

Baba Budan's Coffee Journey: A Tale of Culinary Rebellion and Cultural Revolution

Baba Budan's Coffee Journey: A Tale of Culinary Rebellion and Cultural Revolution

3 minute read

In the heart of Ethiopia's Great Rift Valley, a story as rich and robust as a cup of black coffee unfolds. This is the tale of Baba Budan's coffee journey, a 16th-century Sufi who, in a moment of culinary rebellion, smuggled coffee from Ethiopia to India, igniting a cultural revolution.

An Ethiopian Encounter

Picture this: Baba Budan, a man of faith, wandering through the vibrant chaos of Addis Ababa in 1670. Amidst the cacophony of the souks, he stumbles upon a scene that piques his curiosity. Locals huddled together, savoring a brew as dark and mysterious as the Ethiopian night. This was 'bunna,' the local term for coffee. One sip, and Baba Budan was hooked. The bitter, earthy brew was a revelation, a wake-up call in a cup. He knew he had to share this discovery with the world.

Smuggling the Beans

In a move as bold as the coffee he'd come to love, Baba Budan decided to smuggle a handful of these precious beans back to India. It was a daring act of culinary defiance against the Arab merchants' monopoly over the coffee trade. Strapping the beans to his chest, he embarked on a journey across turbulent seas and rugged mountains, driven by the memory of that first potent sip. His destination? The hills of Chikmagalur in southern India, where he planted the seeds of revolution - seven coffee beans that would give birth to India's first coffee shrubs.

Brewing a Revolution in India

Word of this exotic plant spread across the region like the aroma of freshly brewed coffee. Skepticism turned into curiosity, curiosity into acceptance. From these seven seeds blossomed what is now India's coffee industry, forever transforming the country's agricultural and cultural landscapes. Baba Budan's coffee journey didn't just introduce a new drink; it sparked a revolution, bringing people together over a shared cup, a shared moment.

The Last Sip

Baba Budan's coffee journey is a testament to the transformative power of culinary exploration and the influence one man can have on a culture. His encounter with coffee in Ethiopia and subsequent introduction of the beans to India laid the groundwork for the country's thriving coffee industry today.

So, the next time you take a sip of your morning coffee, remember Baba Budan. Remember his daring journey, his culinary rebellion, and the cultural revolution he sparked. And if you're looking to taste a piece of this history, head over to House of Word Coffee and start exploring the best of India's 100% Arabica Instant Coffee, a direct descendant of Baba Budan's coffee journey.

Original Blend

Original Blend


Your constant companion: perfectly-sized to come on trains, planes, or a weekend away (read: anywhere with questionable coffee). Using only premium beans from ecologically sensitive regions of the Western Ghats of India, House of Word coffee is sourced from one… read more

« Back to Blog