T.S.Eliot once wrote “I have measured out my life with coffee spoons”. Sure, he might have been telling the existential story of a neurotic, emotionally incontinent post-modern man — but the sentiment rings true for most of us, as we crawl our way from cup to cup of caffeinated fuel.
And, any true coffee devotee will agree that it is that first, waking mug over the breakfast table, that really has the power to make or break the day ahead.
With this in mind, we’re bringing you our curation of the best espresso cups on the market right now, which promise to make that first, caffeinated sip all the sweeter.
Keep it simple with these minimalist designs
Ideally, an espresso cup should be 2-3 oz. — any larger and the cup will affect the temperature of the espresso, and you run the risk of it becoming cold too quickly. For this purpose, porcelain ceramic is a brilliant choice of material for a regular espresso mug, as it will regulate the temperature of your drink.
And, if you’re looking to keep your kitchenware pure and simple, then these bright white and cream porcelain offerings from Villeroy & Boch and Le Creuset will fit the bill perfectly. Alternatively, for a more modern aesthetic that still keeps things simple, we love these typically chic offerings from the master of cool design, Tom Dixon.
Made using stainless steel, and finished with a film of vaporised copper, these will keep your precious elixir warm and your kitchen shelves looking stylish.
Le Creuset Stoneware Espresso Mug
Tom Dixon Brew set of four espresso cups
Villeroy & Boch NewWave Espresso Cup
Make your espresso a little more expressive
Don’t get us wrong, we are very much board with the rising Marie Kondo-inspired trend for paring back and stripping down everything from your wardrobe to your interiors. However, dousing everything in a neutral shade of grey can make things just a little, well, dull. Our advice? Spice up your shelving units with one of these patterned cups and enjoy your coffee break in style.
For a more opulent choice, we love the Halcyon Days Antler Trellis espresso cup and saucer set, which is crafted from English fine bone china, and has been hand-gilded for an opulent finish.
Alternatively, channel your inner Jay Gatsby with this Art Deco-inspired Labirinto Nero set by Richard Ginori, or go a little more daring with the Byzance Espresso Cup and Saucer Set from the world-famous Wedgwood.
Halcyon Days Antler Trellis Espresso Cup and Saucer Set
Labirinto Coffee Cup & Saucer Nero
Wedgwood Byzance Espresso Cup and Saucer Set
Bring a little clarity to your morning with a glass cup
Glass makes a brilliant drinking material (regardless of what’s inside the cup), thanks to its neutral taste. Whilst we don’t recommend taking a longer coffee in a glass cup (it’s nowhere near as effective in storing heat for a long period of time as porcelain), we can get on board with these sleek glasses for a quick hit of coffee before you head out to seize the day.
Thanks to their insulated design, this set of two Brogan espresso cups from Blomus are some of the best we’ve tried for keeping your coffee warmer for longer than the average glass offering. Similarly, these mouth-blown glasses from the undisputed coffee-gadget-masters, De’Longhi are incredibly comfortable to hold, and fit snugly beneath their amazing Maestosa Coffee Machine (which we raved about in this week’s editor’s picks).
Also designed with their astronomically popular pod machines in mind, Nespresso’s Vertuo espresso cups set is seriously stylish, and comes complete with saucers and spoons.
Blomus Brogan Glasses Set of 2
De'Longhi Glass Espresso Cups Set of 2
Nespresso Vertuo Espresso Set
Looking for more caffeinated content? These are the world’s best coffees — and the machines with which to brew them…