When communities come together, heartbeats quicken and eyes widen; and for the coffee community at London Coffee Festival every year, coffees are poured by the thousand and the roof of the Truman Brewery is raised by some of the best caffeine fixes and innovations the industry has to offer.
As a foodservice agency that serves a number of much-loved coffee brands, and is home to a dedicated team of in-house coffee fanatics, it was natural for some of the team to take time out and head to this year’s festival and reconnect with industry friends in search for knowledge, inspiration, and new connections.
Taking over four levels of the Truman Brewery, the place was packed with fellow industry professionals, connoisseurs, fanatics, influencers, and budding coffeepreneurs. There was something for everyone, whether a coffee pro or average Joe, from coffee and tea, to food, music, and art.
If you dreamt of pouring perfectly glossy latte art or simply wanted to show off your own skills, the Latte Art stage was the place to be with some of the world’s top latte art specialists at hand to help show the way. On hand was also some of the best brewing talents in the industry, showing what wild new brews and flavours could be achieved at the Coffee Masters stage.
If you wanted to learn about the landscape of the current and future marketplace, deepen your knowledge on sustainability and empowerment, or listen to predictions on the role coffee shops will play in the future, you weren’t disappointed with industry leading experts giving insightful talks on these and more at The Lab throughout each day.
Or, if you wanted to see first-hand the innovative directions the industry is headed, there was something to feast your eyes upon wherever you looked, whether that was via industry leading espresso technology, self-serve equipment, or the latest gadgets for the home baristas out there.
Truthfully, there was so much going on that it might well take a day (or four!) to experience and appreciate it all!
But, if one thing stood out across the entire weekend – and one thing that we could apply to our everyday lives and channel into our work – it was the collected passion and buzz for a commodity that is so clearly more than just that.
To many, coffee may be a drink that only serves a binary purpose, but to those at the London Coffee Festival, and to so many more worldwide, it goes much deeper. It’s a lifestyle, an escape, a vessel to channel ideas and aspirations. It’s seen and experienced at face value, but it’s felt beneath the surface; an intangible sensation that perhaps is only ever noticed through the whites in one’s eyes.
This is not only the case with coffee, but with any area of interest or expertise, whether that be design, marketing, music, or computer gaming; and these events offer a gateway into these worlds that to many others are foreign.
Now in its 11th year, The London Coffee Festival is still Europe’s largest gathering of coffee enthusiasts, and this year it certainly raised the bar even further, leaving us with the firm impression that coffee is not only back with a bang in the post-pandemic world, but is heading to places previously unimaginable.
We had the best time nerding out on all things coffee with some of the best in the industry, many of whom we’re fortunate enough to call friends. We left with full bellies and inspired minds thanks to the incredible company that was kept inside the Truman Brewery.
That and a lot of free coffee.