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Commonwealth Games results & Coffee Drinkers…

Recently the commonwealth games came to a close, and just for fun we decided to look at the possibility that the athletes weren’t getting enough caffeine to perform properly, we conducted some online research trying to see which commonwealth nations drank the most coffee (Canada)  and if that had any relation to the amount of gold medals won, and therefore the overall performance of each nation. Below is what we found (Click below image to enlarge)

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So, there it is, undeniable proof that 0.4 cups of coffee a day supplies the perfect gold-winning amount of caffeine!…

It goes without saying that they are completely not related, with the top medal-takers (UK, England) drinking, on average not even one cup per person per day, and more than this, the least successful of the nations that ranked on the coffee drinking scale, scoring no medals, in fact drank more coffee than the UK did.

Perhaps there’s a special formula for this? Is there a perfect amount of caffeine to enhance performance? Who knows, perhaps we in the UK (England, in particular) have it down and that’s why the UK Brought home the most medals!

The commonwealth games took place in Glasgow and was the largest sporting event ever  held in Scotland, with 4950 athletes from 71 commonwealth nations in attendance, closing on Sunday 3rd August after 11 days and 261 gold medals were attained.

The next commonwealth games will be hosted by the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia, in 2018. We will have to compare notes again and see if we were  right!

Coloured Cups The New Trend?

When it comes to cafés, every owner wants their own spin on it; what makes one café any better at presenting the same drink done in the same way? The cup has a lot to do with it, we have found

We’ve always said that to serve the perfect coffee you need the perfect coffee cup, and of course that is down to each café to define; one thing we have noticed though, is that our colour glazed cups are in high demand!

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With a rise in stepping away from traditional coffee shops in the last few years, we find that lots of artisan coffee roasters and cafés are interested in making their own mark and doing something “a bit different” from the usual white Italian style cup and saucer that has come to be the standard, smaller Italian style cup and saucer…Typically people want more for their money now more than ever, and with places such as Costa Coffee and Starbucks offering larger coffees at a competitive price, the smaller businesses and coffee shops have to step up their game a little bit and meet the market demand.

One thing that I have always noticed in Starbucks is the cup I’m drinking from, it is something unique about that particular coffee brand that you can’t get anywhere else, you look at their mug and instantly identify it as theirs. Okay, they have their logo embossed on those as they are specially made, but the message is there, whether or not it’s a conscious thing, we do identify a brand by the cup we drink from on some level.

That being said, it is easy  to see how and why ranges such as the Steelite Carnival and Craft ranges are becoming so popular; because each coffee shop wants to differentiate from the others in the same area, perhaps even the same stretch of shops, it has become something of a fashion statement to serve your coffee in something a little different

For example, walking into a rustic café you could expect to possibly see Steelite Craft, designed to have all of the appeal of old fashioned, hand-made rustic crockery but with all the durability of hotel standard items, these are used primarily because they look great when suited to the correct kind of shop, and can really help set the mood, especially when you go for a mix of colours across all the different colour varieties.

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Walking into a more modern café, who’s branding has a very distinct colour scheme, or if it is just generally bright, you may find that they use something like the Luna Blue or Steelite Carnival ranges (Sapphire, Sunflower and Fern), or possibly Enrica Red. They may even mix and match these vibrant sets of items. These items are all right on trend and look fantastic!

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The artisan cafes tend to stick to tradition, or go for the more sophisticated black or grey colour glazed items, simply because darker colours give of a feeling of sophistication, class and style. Latte art in an Ena or Enrica Black item looks fantastic because of the coloured glazing on the outside and the white on the inside. Our newest coloured range is the Mocca Grey items, which follow a similar style, with a gunmetal grey finish.

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So if you’re looking to stand out from the crowd, get ahead on the trend and serve the perfect coffee, head over to our colour glazed cups section or give us a call and ask about our coloured items!

 

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Caffe Culture 2014 in Review

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Once again we hit the road this year and got ourselves to Caffe Culture; a two day event at the London Olympia showcasing innovative products, great coffee, artisan roasters & more. We were at stand A16 advertising our new show offer. For us, once again it was a success!

 “Judging by the number of people we spoke to on the stand, the show was a success. We were surprised how many new coffee shop owners we spoke to – 40% off all the people who left their details at the stand were at the show to find suppliers for their new coffee shop. Hopefully this is a sign that the market is buoyant.” – Simon Martin, Director

We spoke to both new and existing customers about their cafes and tableware, and the new cafes took a special interest in our bespoke crockery pack, complete with logos and enough items to run a 24 seat café.

Now in its 9th year, it still remains the sole event in the UK entirely dedicated to the café industry for showcasing important ideas and products for new & established cafes. The seminar sessions help suppliers and owners learn more about what’s on show as well as ideas for boosting output alongside profit.

 

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There were a lot of well-known coffee shops and distributors at the event such as Black Circle Coffee, La Cimbali UK and Lotus Bakeries along with coffee suppliers and many other businesses in the café industry

Our main objective this year was to focus on new business, trying to attract as many new cafes as we could; our show bundle, which was a bespoke crockery pack, boasted  cups, saucers, plates, bowls in lots of sizes, with enough tableware to serve a 24 seat café for the low price of £395 (ex.vat). The pack also included decorating your items with one or two coloured logos and delivery: the perfect set for a new café!

This year’s event managed to dedicate a decent amount of time to an emerging trend: lots of artisan cafes and eateries were on the show floor presenting their products. This year, however there is an emphasis on street food; with many artisan cafes choosing to serve their food from roadside with a dedicated seminar all about street food.

“The show seems to have changed slightly over the last few years which a greater percentage of exhibitors taking small stands to promote niche products. The number of large, mainstream suppliers in attendance has decreased. This has given the visitors more choice of new suppliers across a wider range of products, and reflects the increased variety of food and drink sold by coffee shops in the last few years” – Simon

The artisan coffee roasters were out in full force also, producing unique blends and latte art to match, baristas from all over descended on the Olympia to show off their talent for making the perfect coffee, and no doubt would have shown a great interest in all of the coffee machines on display; a must see for baristas attending!

There were also lots of seminars focusing on current drink trends in cafes; giving cafes old and new something to watch out for & to catch right on trend as well as tips of the industry such as how to build and maintain a top class reputation, and why some cafes fail and, more importantly how to make sure yours doesn’t!

Overall, the event was a success, we managed to speak to plenty of new cafes and managed also to speak to some of our oldest customers about upgrading their older items. We feel confident in saying this year has gone well, and that we’ve certainly attracted plenty of new customers as well as having the chance to catch up with our long standing clients. We’ll certainly be back next time!

“Caffe Culture have stated that the number of visitors over the two days was similar to 2013 and that had been borne out by the number of people we spoke to. “- Simon

Did you attend Caffe Culture? Did we speak to you? Don’t worry, if you didn’t get chance to come see us; there’s a lot to do and see in such a short time, and we’re just as  happy to take your call at our office & deal with any questions or enquiries you may have. New Café? As about our starter bundle, our dedicated sales team can help you get the right quantities for your café!

“We will be back in 2015. Caffe Culture is the perfect show for us because it gives us the chance to speak directly to coffee shop owners in large numbers – a great way to spend a couple of days!”­

Follow us on twitter for the latest news, updates and offers!

@coffeecupstweet

Coffee on the road; Cafes on the Yorkshire route of Tour de France!

Tour De france is in just under 70 days, and of course it will be coming through Yorkshire, even through our city of Sheffield! But what about the other places along the way? Where can you go for a coffee during the Tour De Franc

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One of the bigger places along the route is the old city of York, famous for many things including its magnificent Cathedral. While the contestants are cycling through, or if you’re in the area just visiting during the tour, you can grab a coffee directly on the route at Kafeneion in the (hopefully) nice weather

Kafeneion Café Bar is “a calming port of call from the bustling city centre” which boasts a superb cup of coffee and delicious cake and a range of fresh sandwiches or paninis. While on your way through you can unwind in the “luxurious” atmosphere created by the ambient music and couch seating

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The tour is definitely not short of historic places on its route, even stopping by Haworth, world famous for being the home of the Brontë sisters (& their museum) and the preserved heritage railway. While there you could stop by 10 the Coffee House or the Fleece Inn for a coffee, just off North Street.

10 the Coffee House has received plenty of great reviews for its afternoon tea and sandwiches that are freshly made and well presented. When looking at reviews the people suggest trying some of their rare varieties of coffee and their scones.

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Langsett Village, just outside of Sheffield boasts two great coffee outlets with a view. The Bank View Café overlooks the moorlands of Yorkshire; and is perfect for a drink in the summer; there are plenty of local activities and things to do and see.  Nearby you will also find the Waggon & Horses Inn, sitting on the edge of the Pennines, four miles from Penistone. Enjoy traditional home-made food and real ales by a wood fire while looking out onto the reservoir

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@BankViewCafe

Evidently the tour has been popular with the patrons of the Wagon, and they have a lot planned. Visiting that day? You can enjoy an independent film festival, a bike-themed makeover and even a brass band

So, whether you are cycling ahead of the race or taking a position road-side; there is no shortage of great coffee!

 

CoffeeCups at Caffe Culture 2014!

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It’s that time again and we here at coffeecups are preparing to hit the show floor at this year’s caffé culture exhibition on 14-15 May at the Olympia Exhibition Centre!

With top companies such as Lotus, Teapigs and many more attending, there’s plenty to see for those thinking about starting a café or those who already own one, looking to inject some life into their business, there will be plenty to do

Boasting an exclusive show offer and no minimum order, Coffeecups hopes to reach out to new and existing customers alike; you won’t want to miss us!

Taken from Caffé culture website

With around 5,000 trade visitors attending over two days to do business, the Caffè Culture Show is the UK’s café bar market’s main focal point of the year. Talented people who own and run independent coffee shops, cafes and restaurants across the UK as well as senior buyers with top-level purchasing authority from the high street chains, department stores, hotels and health clubs visit the show to see the latest products, gather new ideas, get expert advice on choosing the right products and make new contacts.


Exhibiting at the show is the most cost-effective way to reach your target audience and is the only café bar event in the UK dedicated to conducting business. “

There will be practical demos and free seminars to attend, including customer satisfaction, street food and reviews of trends for the year, which will be great for any new businesses.

 

With the new feature of street food at this year’s event, companies hope to attract cafes and restaurants to the streets selling their products due to the rising trend.

 

So if you’re heading down to London this year for caffe culture, why not pay us a visit at our stand? We’re located at stand A16, you won’t be able to miss us!

Beerspresso Machine To Begin a Coffee and Beer Trend?

It may be across the pond in Atlanta, but with the recent budget changes in the UK, the beerspresso machine of Taproom Café seems like a great idea! The Espresso machine has been gutted and repurposed into a 12-tap “Beerspresso” machine, it includes a glass rinser mounted into the drip tray plus three additional taps for chilled water, filtered water and sparkling water.

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The inventor, Jonathan Pascual is a seasoned barista who came up with the taproom café concept and launched a kickstarter for it, which blitzed the $15,000 goal in just a week!. More specifically, the plans for the café are to get each barista certified at the Counter Culture’s Atlanta Regional Training Centre, and all the beer will have a focus on local craft ales, also, they will be locally sourcing cake and sweets from local bakeries. The goal for all of this to be in motion is May.

It would appear that the coffee and beer trend has even caught on in America, with a few places opening in England hoping to do the same. The idea itself is simple, coffee and beer bring people together, but in different places, so why not combine the two?

The concept of coffee and beer/ale houses is not a new idea, however it has seen a recent turn in popularity, and it is still on the rise. It could be that we see more and more of these emerge as the trend catches on, potentially even big chains could get behind it, and why wouldn’t they if it’s a good idea?

This trend could see a rise in coffee and beer bars across the UK, especially with beer being slightly lower in price thanks to the new budget.

But will it work? Will the idea take off? Will coffee and beer cafés become something seen one every high street or just a passing trend?

 

London Coffee Festival Coming Soon!

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At the beginning of April, coffee retailers, suppliers and cafes will be gathering in London to partake in the London Coffee Festival as part of the UK Coffee Week! With many names such as Black Sheep, Costa, UE Coffee Roasters and even Starbucks in attendance

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The London Coffee Festival celebrates London’s bustling and vibrant coffee scene.   With over 20,000 visitors expected, The London Coffee Festival promises to be an unmissable event for discerning coffee lovers and those working in the coffee scene. “

In total there will be over 250 artisan coffee and gourmet stalls to visit, tastings and even demonstrations from some of the world’s finest baristas. Alongside this there will be workshops, coffee labs, “Coffee Based Cocktails”, Live DJs & Music, art exhibitions and some of London’s finest fashion designers; such as Milk & Sugar and food retailers from across the UK

“The Lab” will consist of programmes and live demonstrations such as coffee art and science, different brewing techniques and new tastes, with interactive workshops tackling ethical issues and tips for setting up your own coffee shop!

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“The Coffee Art Project” is an art competition with a coffee theme, with fundraising at heart it hopes to showcase the talent and skill of some well-known and up and coming artists; The aim is to capture the essence of coffee and the coffee shop experience. The artists are masterful in all kinds of craft ranging from Hand-Drawn design to videography. So far, over 80 artists are lined up for the event after its previous success.

The prize is £1500 with the chance to have the art appearing on Coffee By Tate for a year! The five shortlisted runners up will get £250 and the visitors are able to vote for their favourite piece.

“The World Coffee Tour” Presented by Union Coffee Roasters is a showcase of the finest coffees from around the world, showing their distinct flavours and the factors that cause this, Union will be giving live roasting demonstrations of different coffees throughout the weekend.

“The True Artisan Café” is a presentation from Europe’s best coffee shops and roasters, allowing people to sample the best bespoke coffees and cocktails, listen to some live DJ sets as well as learning how to make a professional coffee, best thing is it is all for charity! Raising more than £4000 for Project Waterfall!

 

“The Milk Bar” By Cravendale, also called the M.I.L.K BATTLE is taking place on Thursday and Friday, it will see baristas with a knack for latte art lock horns in a showdown until the Sunday final where one barista will be crowned victorious and will claim the prize of a trip to a coffee country of origin.

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“Poetry Café” is an even where visitors can share their favourite pieces of poetry and also budding poets are encouraged to submit their favourite words.

The event will also host the UK Barista Championships, where baristas will compete and demonstrate their skills and knowledge along with presentation and all round ability!

“The Science of Espresso” is presented by a team from L’Accademia di Cimbali, demonstrating that coffee can be just as geeky as science! The crew will be focusing on grinding, temperature, pressure and milk as the key elements of great coffee, their success at last year’s even has driven them to make this year’s show all about 100 years of excellence and the future of coffee.

There are two industry days being held on the 3rd and 4th April, with the public event being held on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday including an Espresso Martini Launch Party.

So are you heading down to London this April for the event? What are you looking forward to seeing? You can tweet us your pictures from the event @coffeecupstweet

You can find more info about the event here 

Or from their Twitter @LdnCoffeeFest 

 

Oscars Nominees In Latte Art!

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Leonardo Di’Cappuccino, anyone?


One very talented barista has recreated some of the lucky winners and nominees of the Oscars in the foam of a latte!

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Mike Breach, in a promotion with illy USA of York decided to pay tribute to the 2014 Oscar nominations by recreating some of the stars and films!

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With the increasing popularity of latte art, perhaps it will see a more permanent fixture as a staple part of the coffee shop experience, who knows, latte artists could be turning up at your local café should they become popular enough

Are there any talented baristas who try their hand at latte art at your local café? Tweet us a picture @Coffeecupstweet, let’s see some talented baristas at work!

 

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You can see more at his Tumblr account

Worst Drought in Years Hits Brazil’s Coffee Trade

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At this time of year the coffee plants in the mountains of Brazil are usually in bloom, but last month a drought hit Brazil worse than has been seen for decades, seriously damaging the yields of Arabica coffee beans. This weather has hit the record books and has caused desperate measures across the country, even to the point of water rationing extreme enough (according to some newspapers) for some areas to only receive water once every three days. As a result of all of this, Arabica coffee could inflate in price by as much as 50% on the market

Luckily, at the moment the retail prices are stable: as most coffee roasters have enough of a supply of coffee to cover their production for a few months, however the inevitable backlash from the extremes of weather means that most people will notice a creeping increase in the price of their Arabica coffee this year, reaching their highest price in 14 months.

Before any of this started, there had been concerns for the coffee market already, with there being an shortage as it stood before the drought, causing a global coffee deficit, with roughly millions of  bags less being produced than previous years, the apparent reasoning for this was that there was somewhat of a glut in Arabica coffee at the end of last year, there was enough of it to mean that the Arabica coffee futures fell by up to a quarter

The rise in the price of coffee is completely unavoidable, as the developing world has begun to have a market for it including Brazil itself, India and China. Inevitably with more people drinking coffee, demand rises and supply may struggle to meet or adjust to the new levels of demand.

The drought is also causing issues for those who take sugar in their drink too, as it has meant that sugar cane cannot be harvested as efficiently either.

How to Make Black Russian and White Russian Drinks!

In the spirit of the Winter Olympics in Russia going on right now, we’ve been looking into famous coffees from Russia, perhaps the most famous of which are the Black Russian and White Russian, so while you’re sat at home or at a bar with your friends enjoying some winter sport, why not settle down with one of these famous drinks?

We’ve found some recipes for both drinks right here so you too can enjoy one hot or cold while the athletes compete for the Gold!

Black Russian

Everyone knows this one, it’s just as classic as the White Russian and is largely the same!

Ingredients: (Source: www.drinksmixer.com)

1 oz vodka
1/2 oz Kahlua coffee liqueur
1 tsp amaretto almond liqueur
5 ozhot black coffee
1 1/2 oz whipped cream
1 tsp sugar

To prepare build ingredients in an old fashioned glass and serve over ice, stir well

Here’s a little info from Cocktails.about.com:

“The Black Russian is a simple vodka and coffee liqueur drink. This popular lowball is known throughout the world and is so popular that it (and the White Russian) should be one of the first that every aspiring bartender should memorize.

Experiment beyond the common coffee liqueurs like Kahlua to create different tastes. One like the creamier Cafe Boheme paired with 42 Below’s Manuka Honey vodka is a great match for a nightcap or an after dinner drink.”

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White Russian

A bar favourite and very versatile when it comes to creating more from the same ingredients!

About this drink : (Cocktails.about.com)

“The White Russian is a drink everyone should know. It’s a simple, creamy vodka mixed drink with a nice coffee flavor that makes a great after dinner sipper.

If you skip the cream you’ll have a Black Russian, give the White Russian a shake at the end and you have a Dirty Bird, add amaretto and you have a Roasted Toasted Almond, add cola and the drink is a Colorado Bulldog, replace the vodka with rye whiskey and you have a Sneaky Pete. The related drink list to the White Russian is almost endless.”

Ingredients: (Source: http://liquor.com/recipes/white-russian/) 

2 oz Vodka

1 oz Kahlúa

Heavy cream

“Add the vodka and Kahlúa to an Old Fashioned glass filled with ice. Top with a large splash of heavy cream and stir.”

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Did you know: The story goes that the Black Russian was created in the late 1940s by Gustave Tops in Hotel Metropole in Brussels, he was serving a drink to Perle Mesta, the American ambassador. Apparently, Gustave wanted to make her a signature drink. The white Russian came a lot later, around the 1960s, and was popularised by Jeff Bridges as the Dude in The Big Lebowski, famously drinking  8 of them throughout the film, and dropping a ninth. (source: Liquor.com)­­

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“Hey, careful, man, there’s a beverage here!”

Fancy Serving one or two up yourself? Do it right with our selection of Glassware!