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The Beginner’s Guide to Coffee Art

Friday, May 02, 2014

Working hours you chose and being able to move between locations while always being close to home is more than a lot of people could ask for, but as you've invested in one of our coffee vans for sale this is now your life.

You make the best espresso for miles around, you provide a friendly, efficient service and your value is unrivalled. You're the proud owner of your own coffee van for sale.

It is a pretty good feeling, isn't it?

So what can you do to go above and beyond?

Coffee art isn’t a new concept, but recent trends have gone beyond a few chocolate sprinkles. We're talking genuine works of art. We had a look at some techniques and some of the finest examples to inspire you to make your lattes the kind of beverage people photograph.

Types of Coffee Art

Some of the most basic coffee art requires no more ingredients than a straightforward latte. Once you've made your espresso and steamed the milk the rest is all in the pour. There is no reason you should feel limited because you're working in a van; we make sure each is kitted out so our coffee vans for sale are just as good (and better) than a static business.

Free Pour

Because the pour technique is so simple, it is most likely to be one you have seen, if not one you already use. There are two main variations on this type of coffee art: the heart and rosetta patterns.

For a rosetta pattern you need to tilt the espresso shot and pour the milk into the cup, starting at the raised end and working the milk towards you. Wiggle the pitcher as you move it across the surface. When you get the other side of the cup you need to pour a straight line across the pattern you've just created to bring it all together.

A heart design is't far removed from the techniques required for a rosetta. You need to tilt the espresso and pour the steamed milk into the cup near middle of the lower edge. Then lift the pitcher higher while still tilting the coffee and pour the milk towards the centre of the cup, wiggly the pitcher slightly to get the shape you're after. When you're nearly done pour the last bit of milk across the surface to the opposite side of the cup and bring it back level to create the point at the bottom of the heart.

It sounds a bit complex but it's actually not that difficult when you've tried it a few times, and it will make your coffees that bit more special. The rate of your wiggle and pour will impact the shape of your art so experiment and see what you can create.


Another great and quick way to get you coffees personalised is to make your own stencils. You'll just need to hold the cut out over the cup and sprinkle some powder and your coffee art will be done in seconds. Easy!


With etching you can create free hand masterpieces using syrups, melted chocolate or simply by manipulating foam. You might find this method a bit time consuming at first but the more you practise the quicker you'll get and you can create some amazing patterns.

Practise On Your Time

To keep your customers smiling try to get speedy with your latte creations. Your efforts are bound to be appreciated but if you make people wait for their morning caffeine hit because you're drawing Nelson Mandela they might not be so impressed. Ideally your art should take no longer than it would normally take you to make a coffee.

No one is going to judge you if it doesn't go quite to plan as long as your drinks still taste great.

If you're not yet one of our lucky franchisees, have a look at setting up a Cafe2U coffee van for sale in your area today and you could be creating exceptional coffee art in no time.

For more amazing examples, have a look at this selection of creative latte art or head over to our Facebook page.

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