Şerbet: A Sip of Ottoman Elegance

It is an old drink in Turkey and one should consider it part of the big Turkish carpet of food culture. It is this sugary and sometimes flowerly beverage, imbued with the traditions of Ottoman Empire that modern Turkey still sees as a metaphor for hospitality and festivity.


11/30/20231 min read

Historical Backdrop:

As a beverage derived from the Ottoman cuisine during the palace days and favored by sultans, Şerbet has been with us since then. Its name, Shariba, comes from the Arabic verb ‘shariba’ meaning ‘to drink.’ It signified wealth and extravagance, usually enjoyed during elaborate banquets and other festive occasions.

What is Şerbet?

Serbet is a non-alcoholic drink containing various infused flavors including fruits, flowers and sometimes even spices and sweetened usually with sugar. These ingredients differ from one another from rose, cherry and pomgrante to tamarin and cinnamom. Diversity brings about a multitude of hues and tastes every one with the individual tale behind it and the list of components involved.

Cultural Significance and Varieties:

There is an aspect of Turkish culture that is especially associated with sherbet. Besides being a sweet summer drink, it is also an integral component of Ramadan meals and weddings. The famous ones include rose sherbet, lemon sherbet, among others, which have different flavors and tastes.

Preparation and Serving:

Preparing sherbet is an art. It starts by boiling water and sugar till syrupy, then infusions of flavors are introduced. After preparation, it is refrigerated and served in fancily decorated glasses or pitchers, embellished with flowers petals or sliced fruits.

Modern Day Revival:

In recent years, the interest in the Turkish traditional drink known as Şerbet has revived in many cafes and restaurants in Turkey. This is not only about taste, but also about reconnecting with a rich cultural heritage.

Şerbet is not only a refreshing drink but also embodies the culture and tradition of Turkey which dates back centuries. A gulp of Şerbet gives one a sip of Ottoman gloriousness – a sweet and odoriferous ride through history.