Waking up to an espresso martini is a great way to start a weekend. Maybe not so much during the week but a Saturday is perfect and when you purchase VIP tickets you get these for free on entry into the lounge. Also, if you plan on going next year, VIP may be worth it because not only do you get the two free alcoholic drinks but you skip the massive queue that forms outside. I was shocked with how long it had gotten by 2PM.
Somewhere along Brick Lane just as you approach the throngs of people lining the streets you find the Old Truman Brewery. This is where the 2016 London Coffee Festival is taking place.
The London Coffee Festival is aimed at both coffee consumers and those and the business. As a consumer it’s sometimes a bit confusing understanding what is being pitched to me and what is more aimed at people with several thousand to spend on a professional grade machine. But one thing is for sure. You will be uncomfortably buzzed after spending a couple of hours wandering the halls of the festival!
Be sure to check the schedule of talks for anything that piques your interest. There are many with topics ranging from the growing culture of coffee to blogging and running a business. There are also manufacturers and vendors eager to show off their new appliances and wares as well as dozens of coffee shops serving up drinks.
One of the coolest things about the festival is getting to sample the different coffees on offer by the dozens of independent coffee shops that make up the London coffee scene. Whether it’s siphon, chemex, pour-over or espresso you’ll find it here.
One of the more interesting methods of brewing coffee that I saw was the siphon method.
As you can see in the video it’s quite an elaborate mechanism for brewing coffee and the result is very good. Sorry, I can’t really explain it in that great of detail since by this time I had around 4 coffees already and was bouncing off the wall.
There were demos and barista competitions as well. I don’t really know how one would judge a barista competition but something tells me the mustacheod man with tattoos and glasses knows a thing or two about judging coffee.
There were plenty of vegan options as well for those who prefer their lattes or flat whites dairy-free. Alpro made sure to have a presence and did a great job with even providing latte art (which non-dairy milks tend to be quite difficult at).
London has a thriving independent coffee scene and there’s no better way to experience it all than with a visit to the London Coffee Festival. Nearly every cafe provides samples of either espressos, lattes or brewed coffee and you’re sure to find something to enjoy. If you’re in the area while this is going on it is certainly worth a few hours of your time.
In case you want something useful out of this post I’ve listed below my top three coffee shops in London.
My Top 3 London Coffee Shops
- Ginger & White (Belsize Park)
- Soho Grind (Soho)
- Kaffeine (Great Titchfield)