In 2010 3fe started serving the ‘set’ to reintroduce people to espresso, who had given up on it long ago. Espresso to us should be a pleasurable experience, not an endurance test. The ‘set’ soon became synonymous with 3fe and has since been adopted in many cafes both at home and abroad.
I've always struggled with cups when it comes to coffee. It's important to have the right heat retention, aeration space, milk ratio, size, shape and texture. Much of what was on offer was designed and made for mass consumption commodity coffee; I wanted something that was a better fit for what we were doing at 3fe.
With this in mind, and facilitated by independent consultant Orlaith Ross, we managed to find a balance between form, function and taste. It was important for us that each step of the process involved an appreciation of the final experience.
The idea was to evolve the design of the classic cup and to present the coffee with and without milk in a balanced way. The cup is too small for a traditional cappuccino however with the roast and flavour profiles that 3fe prefer, it's perfect. Conversely, the cup is too large for a traditional espresso but its perfect for cooling the espresso and enhancing the aromatics.
These handmade, limited-edition cups were crafted by Wicklow Potter Christien van Bussel on her farm in the hills above Aughrim, Co. Wicklow. Taking inspiration from my ideas and drawings she was able to create a beautiful, functional ceramic cup that was refined and embodied what 3fe was about.
Continuing the simple aesthetic, the boxes were designed and created by our good friends and neighbours from up the road, Mike and Fiona at Snow. Even the opening of the box is a special experience. Made from Scandinavian beech, these boxes are reminiscent of the old coffee chests of a time gone past.
We really enjoyed the process that created these cups and we hope you enjoy your own coffee ‘sets’ for many years to come.
Colin Harmon Proprietor, 3fe
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