Essential Equipment For Coffee Shops

Coffee is big business. Specialty coffee sales have increased 20% per year since 2010 and account for nearly 80% of the 18 billion dollar coffee market. In the United States 50% of the population drinks specialty coffee drinks, which translates into 12 billion dollars in yearly sales. So if you're thinking of staking your claim in the specialty coffee business, starting an independent coffee house just may be the right choice for you.

The big question is this: what type of equipment will you need to start your coffeehouse? Thankfully, we at have supplied equipment to coffee shops for over 70 years and know a thing or two about what you need to start your coffeehouse right. So here's our list of coffeehouse equipment essentials.

1. Espresso Machine

An espresso drink (after milk, coffee, and labor is factored in) can cost between 30 to 50 cents per cup to make, yet you can be sold at 8 to 10 times that. So an espresso machine in an essential piece of equipment. An espresso machine can cost you $4,000 to $20,000. Many roasting companies will offer you discounts for your machine. Also, you can get financing for your machine so that you're only paying a couple hundred bucks a month rather than dropping thousands of dollars all at once.

2. Grinder

You'll need two types of grinder for your coffeehouse: An espresso grinder and a drip-coffee grinder. It's typical to get 2 espresso grinders, one for decaf and one for caffeinated beans.

3. Hand sink

A hand sink is essential for washing hands behind the bar, These can be wall mounted or an under-counter model. These are not to be used to wash dishes, as there are specific types of sink for this purpose.

4. Commercial Drip Coffee Maker

Drip coffee is the standard cup of coffee millions of Americans drink every day. It is customary to have both an espresso machine and a commercial drip coffee maker because not everyone wants to spend $5.00 on a cup of espresso and steamed milk. Also, drip coffee is fast.

5. Work tables

If you lack counter space behind the bar then you'll need to get work tables. Work tables are usually made of metal and come in a multitude of sizes to fit your needs. Some work tables even have shelves for additional storage.

6. Grab and Go Merchandiser

Bottled drinks and premade food such as parfaits and sandwiches are ever popular selections within your Grab and Go Merchandizer. Please this useful piece of equipment by the register so customers can make a quick purchase.

7. Coffee Dispenser

Serve drip coffee quickly with coffee dispenser. Have the dispenser next to your register for quick service.

8. Dry Storage Shelving

You'll need plenty of dry storage shelving to store inventory all dry goods you don't have room to put on the floor yet. Coffee bags are the obvious thought, but you'll need shelves for drinks, wrapped sacks, extra cups and much more.

9. Small Ice Maker

Ice drinks are essential for Summer. Although buying ice tends to be the default for your shop when you first start up, you may want to invest in a ice machine as business revs up.

10. Tables and Chairs

This is the most obvious. Buy tables that are both flattering and provide an adequate amount of sitting space in your coffeehouse.

11. Cups and silverware

Depending on the type of drinks you are serving, you may need an array of cups for your customers to drink. Demitasse spoons and tea spoons, along with plates, forks and knifes for snacks.

12. 1, 2, or 3 door refrigerator

You'll absolutely need a refrigerator for your coffeehouse. Your various milks will need to be refrigerated along with soups, drink mixes and other perishable food items.

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