Though London is synonymous with tea, in actuality, the United Kingdom is very much a country of coffee-drinkers as well. According to the British Coffee Association, the UK drinks approximately 95 million cups of coffee per day. So though tea—and all of its surrounding formal rituals—will likely always be a part of British identity, coffee has also become a standard part of life for most Brits too. If you need further proof of this, look no further than The London Coffee Festival. Taking place annually, this festival celebrates London’s vibrant coffee culture. Here’s everything you need to know about the event.
What is The London Coffee Festival?
Taking place over the course of four days, The London Coffee Festival features over 250 artisan and gourmet coffee stalls. It attracts crowds of over 30,000 people. You can expect plenty of coffee (of course), plus demonstrations, interactive workshops, coffee cocktails, live music and DJs, and art and exhibitions. There’s also street food, so come thirsty and hungry. We’re most excited to check out all the creative and super impressive latte art!
When is The London Coffee Festival?
Although often a spring festival, this year the four-day, ticketed event will be held from September 23-26, 2021. Industry days take place on Thursday, September 23 and Friday, September 24 and the event launches to the public on Friday, September 24 at 4:00 p.m. You can find the full session schedule here.
Where is the London Coffee Festival?
The event takes place in East London at the Truman Brewery, Brick Lane, London E1 6QR. There are plenty of tube options nearby like Liverpool Street Station with the Central, Metropolitan, Circle, and Hammersmith & City lines. The Central line covers Notting Hill Gate Station. That station is ideal for those staying at our Leicester vacation rental, which is very close to some of Notting Hill’s best coffee shops. The Circle line also covers Notting Hill and Kensington (ideal for those staying near Kensington High Street at Kensington Court rental apartment). Find more transport options here.
The entrance can be found at 15 Hanbury Street, the Old Truman Brewery, London E1 6QR. Once inside, you’ll find that the festival is divided into “zones” named after London neighborhoods.
How Do I Get Tickets?
Standard admission tickets start at £16.50. You can buy them here or get them at the door. (Though they will be slightly more expensive at the door.)
Tickets include plenty of coffee and food samples, plus entertainment like demonstrations and educational classes. (You also score a limited edition tote bag.) Also, 20% of sales go towards the charity Project Waterfall. Project Waterfall aims to deliver drinking water and sanitation projects to coffee-producing countries in Africa and throughout the world. Since 2011, Project Waterfall has raised over £1 million in support of their efforts. This means they’ve positively impacted the lives of an estimated 50,000 people living in places like Nicaragua, Tanzania, Rwanda, Vietnam, Uganda, Kenya and Ethiopia. You’ll be happy to know your money is going to a good cause.
Who Will Be There?
With over 250 exhibitors, your caffeine levels will be skyrocketing! Some big names include La Marzocco, the world-renowned authentic Italian coffee machine company; CRU Kafe, an organic coffee brand promoting Fairtrade partnerships and eco-friendly packaging; and Lavazza, “Italy’s favorite coffee” established in Turin in 1895.
What if I’m Not a Coffee Drinker?
If you’re a tea fan, you won’t be disappointed. The English Tea Shop, a Sri Lankan-meets-British company will be there, as well as Teapigs, Prana Chai and Flora Tea. You can stock up on your favorite teas, as they make a great souvenir. You can find a few other ideas for edible souvenirs here.
In terms of food and other purveyors, you find Blue Diamond Almonds; Fentimans natural botanical drinks; Tony’s Chocolonely; Matcha and Beyond beverages and Willie’s Cacao.
What Other Coffee Events are in London?
London has plenty of cafes, so you will not go un-caffeinated while exploring the city. In addition to this festival, you can also participate in London Coffee Week from October 18-24, 2021 where coffee shops all across the United Kingdom participate in fundraising efforts for Project Waterfall.
Planning on visiting London? Check out our guide to What’s On in London to plan your perfect trip. You’ll also want to find yourself a private London rental apartment. Get in contact with the team at London Perfect. We can help you land an amazing London apartment!