Best cups to serve coffee

Coffee experts hold the view that the experience of drinking coffee is greatly heightened by your choice of cup/glass that you select. For instance, the Italians believe the white small cup is perfect for an espresso. The white contrasts with the rich, dark coffee. Here is a list of our choice of best coffee cups.

We look at a variety of drinks and brewing techniques. You can read our article on types of coffee to remind yourself of the variety of coffee drinks. An electric kettle is a handy gadget to heat up the coffee cups. 

If you have plenty of storage in your kitchen, you can certainly indulge in the best coffee cup for each type of coffee drink. If you are short of space, then some of the drinks can easily double up and work just as well. 

​Here is our choice of best coffee cup shapes illustrated so you can see what we mean. 

Clicking on the image or the text under the image will take you to a shopping site. 

1. Espresso cups (Demitasse cups)/Café Bombon cups

Demitasse means half cup and the espresso cup size is ideally between 60-90ml. White is the classic colour to serve an espresso in. There are some classic shapes – which are designed to get the intensity of the aromas and flavours to reach your nose and mouth at the same time.

For a more contemporary look, glass and the colourful cups work well. The transparency of the glass lets you see espresso and its three parts - the crema, body and heart. If you’d like to try the indulgent Spanish café Bombon, then glass cups  are a must so that you can see the layers of this coffee. 

Discover the best espresso cups

2. Cappuccino/Mocha/Americano Cups

White is the traditional choice again for a cappuccino. There are a variety of shapes, the classic being the curved shape and nearly uniform to the base. Others that slightly narrow to the base. Glass works well too. Stick with white if you’d like these cups to double up as tea cups as well.

Discover the best cappuccino cups

3. French press/Filter coffee cups

For the longer filter or French press coffees we like the straight-line side profile of these white cups. You can always serve these coffees in the round cups as well.

Discover cups for French press or filter coffee

4. Piccolo/Cortado Tumblers

If you want to achieve the café look at home, old fashioned tumbler shapes are perfect for this. But you can work with a small filter coffee cup or with your cappuccino cups too or for the smaller piccolo, you can try a glass espresso cup as well.

5. Long black coffee or instant coffee Mugs

Coffee mugs are the classic choice for the long black coffee or filter coffee. Again, if you have family who love loads of tea, then a mug that doubles up for both works well.

Discover coffee mugs

6. Latte glasses/Irish coffee/Floating coffee glasses.

The classic latte glass shape is a tapering shape from the top that gets narrower at the top. You can use these to serve floating coffee or an Irish coffee too, though they traditionally have a slightly different shape. Since these two drinks get very hot, you definitely want handles for these drinks.

Discover Latte glasses

7. Iced coffee glasses

Mason jars, beer glasses, tall juice glasses are all great for a variety of cold coffees.

You find artisan coffee houses serving you coffee in some quaint cups, as part of creating the atmosphere in their café. So why not look at cups of different shapes to see which ones you like the best for your preferred coffee brew?