You have a business plan, a great location, and the perfect name with an awesome logo to go with it, but now that it’s time to supply your coffee shop, you’re unsure of where to start. Well, even though specific requirements will vary from business to business, we’ve developed a comprehensive coffee shop equipment list to get you started. To get an idea of the equipment needed when opening a coffee shop, take a look at the information below, or for a quick reference, check out our printable coffee shop equipment list!
Coffee, Espresso, and Beverage Equipment
- Espresso Machine
The first step for any independent coffee shop is sourcing coffee beans that will give your drinks the distinct, fresh flavor that will define your brand. The second step is choosing an espresso machine that allows you to transform those beans into lattes, mochas, cappuccinos, and other specialty drinks. These espresso-based drinks will not only draw in customers, but they will boost your revenue more than selling cup after cup of plain, black coffee. While there is used equipment for sale, buying a new espresso machine is recommended since this will be the workhorse of your coffee shop.
- Espresso Grinder
Grinding your beans in house and throughout the day is the key to creating the best drinks possible. In fact, grinding beans even 10 minutes prior to brewing can result in a noticeable decline in the flavor. But, why does freshly grinding coffee beans make such a difference? It increases the surface area of the bean and gives you access to the rich oils and soluble particles that create the distinct taste and aroma of different brews. Espresso grinders are designed to make the ultra-fine grind that espresso machines require to work properly.
- Regular Coffee Grinder
Although customers who order specialty drinks will far outnumber the ones who prefer regular, black coffee, it’s important to accommodate all of your customers! A single grinder for both regular and decaf drip coffee can generally keep up with the lesser demand for this type of drink.
- Coffee Brewers
While one regular coffee brewer should be sufficient for the average coffee shop, there are plenty of types to choose from. Automatic brewers, pour over coffee machines, and coffee urns are a few of the many ways to brew and serve coffee.
- Decanters, Air pots, and Satellite Servers
Coffee often brews into glass decanters, but there are also airpot and satellite brewers which brew into vessels that can keep coffee hotter for longer. These are great options for a self-serve station.
- Frappe and Smoothie Blenders
A blender with a sound shield is necessary so you can make frozen espresso-based drinks like iced lattes, frappes, and macchiatos. The sound shield allows you to use the blender without disturbing the ambiance at your business, which is especially important for small operations where there is little separation between the drink prep area and the seating area. A high speed blender is recommended for a smoother consistency and faster service. Alternatively, you could also invest in a granita machine to keep a steady supply of iced or frozen coffee and tea at the ready!
- Iced Tea Brewers and Iced Tea Dispensers
From traditional iced tea to unsweetened lemon tea to southern sweet tea, iced tea is a classic drink that customers love to sip in the summertime. You can purchase an independent tea brewer dedicated to this type of beverage, but depending on the size of your coffee shop, you may also want to look into combination coffee and tea brewers to save on counter space. Once you’ve made tea, there are plenty of dispenser options to choose from as well.
- Hot Water Dispenser
Although many coffee machines come with a built-in hot water faucet, a standalone hot water dispenser can increase your volume of boiling water and even clear up traffic jams caused by someone trying to make coffee and fill multiple mugs with hot water for tea at the same time. Since hot water is also used for many cleaning tasks, having hot water at the pull of a lever can also cut down on the time it takes to perform routine cleaning throughout the day.