Boza and salep (beverage made from sahlep root in hot milk and cinnamon) are traditional tastes. Advertising and marketing agencies aren’t necessary to convey them to the consumers. They have regular customers. Their fans impatiently wait for the winter to come. Especially in Balkan countries.
The fans of boza and salep impatiently wait for the winter to come in order to taste these traditional beverages. Unfortunately, these two delicacies are losing the race with the popular beverages of the age with slow but confident steps.
You can taste the seasonal beverages such as boza and salep, the traditional delicacies, like their fans waiting for winter eagerly. Unfortunately, these two delicacies are losing the race with the popular beverages of today, with slow but confident steps.
Nevertheless, they preserve the Balkanian tradition of the nostalgic products. You can taste wonderful and delicious boza whenever you want in the confectioneries of ‘’Vefa’’ in İstanbul, ‘’Akman’’ in Ankara, ‘’Apçe’’ and ‘’Şeherezada’’ in Skopje and in the places in ‘’PaleoFaliro’’ region in Athens.
BOZA, THE PRINCE OF WINTER
Boza, which has a history going back to eight or nine thousand years ago, is the best loved beverage of the winter months even if it is not hot. According to some researches, the contemporary name of boza, which is said to be produced in Central Asia and brought to Anatolia and its surroundings with the migrations and became prevalent there, comes from the Persian word ‘’buze’’ meaning millet.
Hacı Sadık Bey, who settled in Vefa where bureucrats and aristocratic families lived in that period, produced his thick and sourish boza loved today and made boza production both a profession and a brand with the name Vefa Bozacısı in September 1876.
Peddlers selling boza used to sell boza in the streets shouting at the top of their lungs and singing Mani (traditional short Turkish poems) poems at cold nights until 15-20 years ago. However, the boza sellers who could not make their Manis heard in the high buildings glazed with termophane which were continuously taking the places of wooden mansions vanished.
Akman was founded by Muhharem and Vahap, two brothers of Albanian descent migrated from Skopje, Macedonia in 1936. It succeeded in becoming one of the family corporations continued from grandfathers to grandchildren and succeeded in becoming a history in Turkey.
When you say boza in Macedonia, the old confectionary shop named ‘’Apçe’’ near Univerzal auditorium in Debar ward comes to mind. It was set up by İsman Kadri in 1934. The citizens gave the name ‘’Apçe’’ (pill) to boza which is indicated as the cure of many diseases in 1940 and this name is still used today.
Practically, boza is well-known in Greece. In Athens, it is possible for you to find it only in special places and the ‘’PaleoFaliro’’ region in the South of the city. A more crowded society who has gradually come from İstanbul since 1960s live in this region. There are special places here. We can say that, boza is not advertised enough, so, you must ask if there is any boza for you to drink. Only the local people know boza and they drink it with pleasure. The situation is similar in northern Greece but there is an exception. In Thessaloniki, there is the ‘’Hatzis’’ patisserie which was founded in 1980 and whose owner came from Kosovo. Now, there are many places in Athens opened by the Hatzis family but the prices are very high. Nevertheless, boza is not advertised; moreover, there are no attempts to make it popular among the people.