Have a Cuppa - November 2007 Enewsletter Article
Tej is a mead or honey wine brewed and consumed in Ethiopia. It is flavored with the powdered leaves and bark of gesho, a hops-like bittering agent which is a species of buckthorn.
A sweeter, less-alcoholic version called berz, aged for a shorter time, is also made in Ethiopia. The traditional vessel for drinking tej is a rounded vase-shaped container called a berele, which looks like a Florence flask. Tej has a deceptively sweet taste that masks its high alcohol content, which varies greatly according to the length of fermentation.
Tej is usually homemade, but throughout Ethiopia it is available in tejbeits (known as "tej houses", or pubs).