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With Dublin recently becoming the second most coffee-obsessed nation after Amsterdam, java lovers have now taken to building their very own coffee stations at home. Here, we discover how to replicate a barista experience of our own.
Whether in your kitchen, dining room corner, or even tucked inside a vacant cupboard, creating a dedicated space for coffee has become a recent must for your home. When working from home meant no more morning coffee runs, many of us took to our kitchens to become our own baristas. But as a nation devoted to coffee culture (Dublin was recently named as the second most coffee-obsessed nation after Amsterdam), we soon realised that instant coffee just didn’t compare to our daily coffee shop flat whites. While we can look at as many YouTube latte tutorials as we like, the truth is this is one case where a workman really can ‘blame his tools’. Investing in quality equipment is the key to producing coffee-shop grade espressos.
But the price for barista-quality coffee came with the cost of counter space. By creating a dedicated coffee area, not only will it streamline your morning routine but it will also give you back your much-needed countertop. What’s more, it’s as simple as it sounds: carve out a space in your home (think a vacant kitchen cabinet, sideboard or even a specific trolley you can move from room to room) and fill it with everything you need to fix up the ultimate morning brew, afternoon pick-me-up or after-dinner blend. You can even customise yours to fit your household's taste, mixing in hot chocolate pouches, tea bags and other drinks for young and old to sip on.
Ahead, we’ve rounded up all the inspiration and accessories you’ll need to create a dedicated coffee space worthy of your favourite grind.
To prevent your coffee station from becoming just another cluttered cupboard, you’ll need to install handy storage solutions on both the worktop and inside the unit. Stick your sugars, syrups and coffee pods on a decorative tray to keep your station neat. For a more uniform look, keep everything — coffee canisters, sugar bowl and jars — in the same or similar colour palette.
Whether you like to kick-start your morning with a short and intense shot of espresso or prefer to sip away with a long café latte, there’s a coffee machine to suit you. Pod machines win on the convenience front, as you don’t need to grind your own beans – meaning they’re a good way to ensure freshness, too. An espresso machine is good for just that – creating a rich, condensed, short coffee with a perfect crema. They’re a good buy for an aspiring barista, as they allow for playing around with your method. But, they tend to be bigger, and are therefore only suitable for larger trolleys or those with more space. Or, you can make your coffee using a drip machine, air press, stovetop coffee maker or cafetière. All have different benefits and provide varying results, so your choice will depend on personal preference.
Even if you feel satisfied by your usual bean-to cup of joe, adding coffee accessories and gadgets to your brewing process can take your coffee to the next level. If you're willing to step outside the comfort zone around your tried-and-true favourite brewing process, you may find that a perfect cup of coffee, espresso or iced coffee is within reach if you have just the right coffee accessory. These gadgets come in all shapes and sizes, but they all have one thing in common - they make brewing expert coffee accessible and fun.
THE PERFECT CUP
For all the options out there, the best coffee drinking experience starts and ends with your choice of mug. A quality cup or mug can make all the difference and is a worthy investment, especially if you tend to pour several refills per day. Serving coffee for more than one? Keep a set of quality everyday mugs on hand.
DEDICATE A SPACE
The most essential part of your coffee space is the space itself. If you don't have a vacant press or countertop free, bar trolleys and sideboards make for great options. Sideboards are going to offer the most storage space and therefore make for an obvious choice. You can choose from a variety of woods and they’ll create a big statement. Alternatively, bar trolleys can be repurposed as a smaller solution for a coffee trolley. It won’t take up a lot of space and it’s mobile making it a great option when hosting.
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