It is a fact universally acknowledged that any person working or residing within the City of London must be in want of a coffee. The capital knows this, the people know this, and thus it is that we have the eighth return of the marvellous London Coffee Festival this month. Running from 12th to 15th April, centred at The Old Truman Brewery on Brick Lane, the London Coffee Festival 2018 promises caffeination for both the most diehard coffee aficionado and the budding barista looking to hone their skills, as well as the tentative novice taster widening their horizons from that old beloved British cup of tea.

Over 250 exhibitors will be set out over the Brewery’s four floors for the Festival, offering live demonstrations, myriad workshops, and tastings liquid and more properly edible, too. Thursday and Friday daytime hours are for those in the industry only, but from Friday evening (4pm to 10pm) onwards, this year’s London Coffee Festival is open to all, scheduled into “Brunch” (10am to 1pm) and “Tea” (4pm to 7pm) slots, as well as a “Lunch” (1pm to 4pm) spot on Sunday 15th April. General entry tickets cost £14.50 online or £22.50 on the door; concessions apply also, with under-10s admitted free.

Of course, given all this choice it will come as no surprise that when the Festival says “coffee”, there is also the room for manoeuvre in the term… Yes, we’re talking alcohol. From wine tasting (at £6 per person) to deliciously adult mixology run by La Cimbali (for £25 per person, cocktail included), London takes this bean to new heights for yet another year.

Alongside the drinking (in all guises) of coffee, there is being run also a Coffee Art Project competition in order to further fundraise for the chosen charity, Project Waterfall, as part of the UK Coffee Week 2018 (nationwide from 16th April through 22nd April). Project Waterfall endeavours to “bring clean water to coffee-growing communities”. Any media type is accepted from those artists (new or established) who want to take part in this deeply community-centred project, as long as it is “an original piece of artwork that represents a creative, unique and personal connection to the concept of ‘coffee’ or a ‘coffee shop experience’”. Visitors to the London Coffee Festival will be able to vote for their favourite and the winner will receive £1,000 (three runners up will receive £250 each). Artworks will be available for purchase online, as well.

On the topic of art, and returning to a coffee-centric vein, latte art (of course) is to be a big focus of the London Coffee Festival. Dhan Tamang, reigning champion since 2013, Lem Butler, and Aussie Luke Shilling will be delighting fans of the craft with their particularly adept and intricate frothy swirls. Most excitingly pertaining to this artistry, Saturday 14th April sees the first and UK heat of the Breezy Masters competition, promising to take “latte art smackdowns to new heights” (the final, with winners from participating countries around the globe, will take place in Melbourne later this year). We’re excited, though that could just be our coffee buzz: you should be too.