Coffee Shop Equipment List: What You Need to Know Before Opening Your Own

Vietnamese Coffee Exporter
Coffee Shop Equipment List

Coffee Shop Equipment List: To thrive in the café business, selecting the right coffee shop equipment is paramount.

An ideal location and striking café aesthetics are undoubtedly vital. However, after securing the premises, procuring the right equipment is the most substantial investment in setting up your café. Hence, it’s crucial to make informed decisions about your equipment purchases, while keeping your budget constraints in view.

Wondering about the essential equipment for your coffee shop startup? This post offers a rapid rundown of necessary café equipment for aspiring coffee shop entrepreneurs, sprinkled with useful insights and advice.

Coffee Shop Equipment List: What Equipment Is Needed For A Coffee Shop?

So, you’re planning to open a new coffee shop? The first step is to write a business plan, which includes a budget for all the necessary equipment. Feeling overwhelmed already? Don’t worry, here’s an easy-to-follow checklist of essential coffee shop equipment to get you started.

1. A Commercial Grade Espresso Machine

A top-quality commercial espresso machine is often the centerpiece of a specialty café or coffee shop, combining engineering brilliance with artistic design. These machines are crucial workhorses, and cutting corners here is not advisable.

Espresso drinks can be significant profit drivers for successful coffee shops, making the investment worthwhile. It’s essential to have a machine that meets customer demand efficiently, as long wait times for morning lattes can deter customers. Look for a balance between output, build quality, and the number of group heads.

The size of your coffee shop dictates the capacity of your espresso machine. A small business with a focus on brewed coffee and food might manage with a single-group machine. Small-to-medium shops should opt for a semi-automatic machine with two group heads, capable of making four coffees simultaneously and accommodating two baristas. Expect to spend upwards of $10,000 for a quality model. Larger establishments may require three or four-group machines, which can cost $20,000 or more.

Espresso Gear For Baristas

Equip your baristas with essential tools like espresso tampers, milk frothing pitchers, tamping mats, and knock boxes. Consider automatic tampers to prevent repetitive strain injuries in a busy environment.

2. A Commercial Coffee Brewing Setup

Providing a drip coffee option is essential for customers who prefer regular coffee, offering quick service even if it lacks the glamour of espresso drinks. Commercial automatic drip coffee makers, or batch brewers, can brew several liters at a time. Depending on the model, you may need glass carafes, thermal carafes, or airpots to keep the coffee warm.

Batch brewers aren’t known for high-quality coffee. If specialty brews are your focus, consider setting up multiple pour-over stations or using siphon brewers to attract customers with both design and excellent coffee.

Coffee Accessories

Don’t forget about necessary accessories like coffee filters and decanters. Extra thermal carafes can be useful for self-serve milk and cream stations.

3. An Industrial Coffee Grinder – Or Two

Depending on your café’s size and menu, you need at least one commercial burr grinder. If you serve both coffee and espresso, you’ll likely need two. Investing in a high-quality grinder is crucial, as it significantly impacts the quality of your coffee drinks. Expect to spend several thousand dollars on a good espresso grinder.

Some grinders are versatile enough for both espresso and drip coffee, but the best grinders are specialized for a single brewing method. You might also consider a third grinder for freshly ground decaf coffee. A precision digital scale is essential if your grinder lacks a built-in scale.

4. Water Filtration System

Water quality is vital for great specialty coffee, as it makes up nearly 98% of the beverage. Installing a water filtration system, such as reverse osmosis filtration, enhances coffee quality by removing impurities and remineralizing the water, which can also help with acidity in certain coffee types. Using filtered water improves coffee flavor and extends the life of your equipment by preventing grime buildup.

A suitable water filtration system for a café doesn’t have to be expensive, but testing your water first will help determine the best system for your business.

5. Refrigeration Gear

You’ll need refrigeration to store milk for coffee drinks and possibly juices, food, and sweets. An ice machine for iced coffee and a freezer may also be necessary. The size and capacity of refrigeration units depend on your needs, with prices ranging from under $1,000 to over $3,000. Initially, you can opt for smaller, under-the-counter units and scale up as needed.

6. Point-Of-Sale System

The point-of-sale (POS) system is the brain of your coffee shop. A comprehensive POS system ensures efficient check-out processes, enhancing customer satisfaction and employee experience.

7. Odds And Ends

Launching a coffee shop involves a multitude of details. Beyond the essential equipment, consider the following:

  • Dishware: Invest in quality coffee cups and mugs, ensuring you have the right sizes for various espresso drinks. Don’t forget plates and cutlery if you offer food. For take-out options, choose environmentally friendly products.
  • Furniture And Decor: Decide if you want a lounge-like atmosphere with comfortable seating or a more streamlined, counter-focused setup for quick service.
  • Cooking Equipment: Depending on your menu, you might need a commercial oven or simpler appliances like a panini press or toaster oven.
  • Beverage Equipment: A commercial-grade blender is essential if you offer smoothies or blended iced coffee drinks.

Cleaning And Maintenance Supplies: Budget for cleaning and maintenance to keep customers safe and equipment in top condition. Ensure you have specialty cleaners and tools for your espresso machine, brewers, and grinders.