In recent years the desire to taste and sample gourmet coffee and speciality teas from real world-class baristas has been gaining more and more popularity. The London Coffee Festival is the UK’s largest artisan coffee event and provides the perfect environment to get involved and learn the tricks of the trade.
The festival will begin with two industry-only days on 30th April and 1st May, however, during the evening of the latter – from 5-8pm – the ‘Espresso Martini Launch Party’ will take place at the Old Truman Brewery on Brick Lane, marking the first public event of the week. The same event will subsequently occur on 2nd May and 3rd May, three times each day.
Old Truman Brewery, Brick Lane
The Old Truman Brewery will hold all of the flagship events at this year’s London Coffee Festival. The venue will be hosting everything from tastings and demonstrations to competitions and Q&A sessions. All tickets will include access to Milk and Sugar, which will allow you immerse yourself in the creative world of coffee brewing through exhibitions and collaborations that celebrate the craftsmanship, style and aesthetics of the industry.
The Coffee Masters competition will feature some of the world’s most skilled baristas competing for a £5,000 cash prize. Food will be provided courtesy of Herman ze German. In addition, a pop-up artisan coffee shop, La Marzocco, will be taking orders to raise money for Project Waterfall.
Coffee Art Project
Coffee Masters isn’t the only competition taking place this year; the Coffee Art Project will be showcasing the talent and creativity of new and up-and-coming artists – you can apply via their website. This competition involves any piece of artwork, in any medium, providing it’s in some way related to coffee. The winner will receive a cash prize of £1,500 and five runners-up will receive £250. As a spectator you’ll be part of the all-important voting process, so get ready to give your best critique.
The True Artisan Café, Soho
The True Artisan Café will be located in the Soho area during the London Coffee Festival. Unlike the Brick Lane branch at the Old Brewery, this coffee shop will be adding DJs to the mix who’ll be spinning discs as world class baristas shake up coffee cocktails.
Costa, Nero and Starbucks
The UK Coffee Week organisation asks for all coffee shops to take part by promoting coffee culture and contributing to the Waterfall Project. Franchise stores such as Costa, Nero and Starbucks will all contribute to the initiative by providing offers on speciality coffees from 4th May until 10th May. Many regional branches will also be holding seminars and workshops.
One of the new, and most exciting, features of the 2015 London Coffee Festival is the Project Waterfall charity fundraiser, which will be raising money to deliver clean water to coffee producing countries throughout the duration of the event. The primary aim of the organisation is to raise £100,000, most of which will be donated to Mbulu, Tanzania.
The London Coffee Festival is the flagship event of the UK Coffee Week, which officially starts on 4th May and ends on 10th May. If you’re a keen coffee lover or simply want to learn a thing or two about the craft, it’s certainly worth checking out.
Looking for something more than a caffeine kick to exercise your adrenaline and get your heart pumping? Why not take a trip on the London Helicopter instead?