Local Food and Drinks in Tigray (Gheralta Churches) Region

Tigray is best-known for its astonishing rock churches (Abune Yemata Guh, Mariam Korkor, Daniel Korkor), this rock churches simply subdue one to be at a loss for words. Aside from the rock churches, Tigray has so many beautiful and remarkable things to experience. If you are looking for doing some off the beaten path activities in your stay in Tigray, here are some things you should definitely have a glimpse of:

Organic Honey-Wine (Tej)

Tigray aside of being the birth place of architectural brilliance, home of hundreds of rock churches (Abune Yemata, Mariam Korkor, Daniel Korkor 20160531_143634and so many more), Tigray is also the home and I mean THE HOME of organic honey wine— so sweet that after you took the first sip you’ll be missing your second. One of the things you should do in your stay in Tigray is check out, the best place to taste real organic sweetness.  In Abi Adi, a place situated at about 870 kilometers north of Addis Ababa is a place within which you would have a real taste of organic honey-wine.

There is this “kinda cute” traditional vessel for drinking Tej, it’s a rounded vase-shaped container and called Berele (Amharic) by locals, which looks like a Florence flask. Tej has a very deceptive sweet taste that hides its high alcoholic content, which is greatly dependent on the length of fermentation. If you are looking for less-alcoholic, sweeter, version of Tej, Berz is the one, and is aged for a shorter time.

Although I must add, some species of buckthorn (one of the ingredients in Tej) may cause “demyelinating polyneuropathies.”


For centuries Tella has persisted as being one of the favorite drinks that Ethiopian’s are served along with almost any food.  Tella is one of the Home-brewed traditional alcoholic drinks. It is brewed from grains, from Teff (a grain from which Enjera is also made) and sorghum and barley to spice up the drink.

Then having been dried and ground buckthorn leaves are added to speed up the fermentation process. Tella’s fermentation process goes through a smocked fermention vessel. The unfiltered Tella is also called Kerare and has an alcoholic content of two to four volume percent while the filtered Tella has an alcoholic content of five to six volume percent.


IMG_3299 - CopyTihlo is one of the distinctive traditional foods that make Tigray a place of quiddity. The rock churches(Abune Yemata Guh, Mariam Korkor, Daniel Korkor) gracing Tigray with their crafty brilliance,  and traditional heritages like Tihlo, Ashenda and many others casting a bright spot light on Tigray, making Tigray one of the richest and diverse nationality in Ethiopia. Tihlo is made from worked and softened barley in a room temperature water. Then after having been softened, the mixture is trilled up in portions In more like the size of a meatball and put on a plate. Then after a sauce made from onion, tomato paste and chili powder (also know as berbere in Ethiopia) is set up in the midst of the plate encircled by the meatball sized dough

Starting from how Tihlo is set up to how it looks and tastes, Tihlo is one of most loved traditional food in Tigray.

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