Two and a half years ago Maja Gredić lost her job as a marketing executive and knew exactly what she had to do with her life. ‘I had travelled the world for work and always loved the taste of good coffee,’ she explained. ‘In Serbia, I didn’t find coffee that tasted as good as what I discovered on my trips abroad. I believe that the true sign of the quality of your country is found in the quality of your coffee.'
For the good of Serbia, Maja decided to make a difference and opened a small coffee kiosk in Novi Sad designed to be a ‘peaceful and quiet’ place for people to visit. She roasts all of her coffee at home and then grinds and packages the beans at her shop. On the brown paper coffee bags Maja handwrites personal notes like, ‘You are the coffee you drink’ and ‘With a cup of coffee, even a day in Serbia has some chance.’
‘I'll keep promoting quality coffee, so I do have hope for the future.’
As do we, Maja. For both your coffee and your country.
Words and images by Fred Shively and Paul Kelly, the Balkan Caffeinators.
What is Balkan Caffeination?
Our mission is to explore why coffee and cafés are central to the Balkan way of life.