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Vending machine hot chocolate and vending machine coffee



 Vending machine Coffee

The Unsung hero of the office…

Sitting quietly out of the way, it rarely makes a fuss and listens every single day to the office gossip too. It probably knows more about the new HR team member than anyone else does & what Keith got up to at the weekend…


Not only that, it’s provided you and your team with a Monday morning coffee boost, the mid-day caffeine cravings, the attack of the sweet tooth, and even helped you get through the cold winter mornings.


The drinks vending machine in the office gets a tough time, but we’re fans here at A1 Coffee. Although we don’t like to brag, the drinks vending machine is very often filled with speciality vending machine hot chocolate and vending machine coffee direct from us!  


To the point, actually, maybe we take it all back, we’re the unsung hero of your office, or we’re at least going to take some credit for it.


The vending machine wouldn’t be as wonderful without our speciality vending machine hot chocolate or vending machine coffee, so, we may not know what Keith got up to at the weekend, but we’re the reason why you’ll never have to worry about where the team are going to get the next caffeine fix from.


You can take a look at our speciality vending machine hot chocolate and vending machine coffee here…


We supply a whole range - From Galaxy Vending Machine Hot Chocolate to Nescafe Vending Machine Coffee  


0 Comments | Posted By David Huggett

How To Make The Ultimate Frappe

25 Aug 2015 10:38:08


Summer isn't over yet, so it's time to make the most of the sun and enjoy a long, iced drink at the same time. We have noticed a big increase in the popularity of frappe drinks with our customers this year, so if you aren't already making them, here is our quick guide to get you started.

What is a frappe?

A frappe is an iced beverage that has been blended, shaken or beaten to create a foam consistency amongst the drink, which is then served cold, and often topped with whipped cream and toppings.


It’s up to you whether you add ice before or after beating the coffee, and additives such as sugar, syrups, sauces and flavourings can be used to customise your drink.

What’s the difference?

The difference between a frappe and any other iced drink is that frappes are blended for a lot longer, till the ice is blended properly and a substantial foam has been made. Sometimes frappes are made in a cocktail shaker, in which case crushed ice can be added into the shaker, or whole ice once you’ve finished shaking. Another difference is that smoothies or iced cappuccinos are only blended to the preferred ice consistency, regardless of the foam content. Since the blending process for iced and frappe cappuccinos is very similar, it is quite often very difficult to see or know the difference between them.

Do I need any equipment?

To make a frappe, you will ideally use a professional blender, as they will have a more powerful motor and larger, sharper blades. You will need a blender that is capable of shaving the ice, blenders such as those made by Blendtec. Blendtec blenders are very modern, professional and affordable, and can vary up to 42 different blend cycles from one blender. If you don't have such a blender, don't worry - so long as your machine can blend ice, then you're OK.

Blendtec Blenders

Our most popular blender is the Blendtec Q series smoother which features 30 pre-programmed blend cycles.


What products do I need to make one?

Here at A1 Coffee, we do everything we can think of to make life easy, so we stock frappe powders and liquids that are super quick to make. With the powders, all you have to do is put some ice, milk and some powder into the blender, then simply blend to your preferred consistency. We have recently started stocking pre-mixed liquid frappes in cartons, and these have proved to be a hit with customers who either don't want to make their own frappes, or who don't have a blender. You just pour these over a glass full of ice cubes!

How to serve it (what cup? what straw?)

Frappes can be served in a variety of ways, from long tall glasses, to clear plastic cups and even mugs. It’s all about personal preference and what aesthetic you are going for. Generally speaking, they are served in tall, heavy milkshake glasses, seeing as they are similar to milkshakes. If you are serving them with a straw, use a thick smoothie straw or similar, as there will still be small pieces of ice in the drink.

How do you actually make it?

The most popular DIY way of making a frappe at the moment simply consists of putting 1 cup of black coffee, 1 cup of milk and 1 cup of ice into a blender, then all you have to do is blend until nearly smooth and sweeten as desired.

However, if you are going to use a powder, such as Simply Coffee Frappe Powder then you will need to fill a cup with ice cubes, then pour milk into the same cup until the ice cubes are covered. Place the contents of that cup into a blender with 1 scoop of this powder and blend until crushed.


What flavours are available?

Frappes are just like milkshakes, they are whatever flavour you want them to be! At A1 Coffee we do stock a variety of flavours such as coffee, vanilla, chocolate etc. But if you want to be a little more adventurous, you can always have a look at our massive range of flavouring syrups, and simply choose the one you like the sound of. The most popular flavours of frappes currently are caramel, coffee and vanilla.

If you really want to stand out from the crowd, use the excellent Kool Kup Neutral Frappe Powder - this gives you the frappe blend but without a flavour, allowing you to use flavouring syrups to create whatever you like. We currently stock 350 different flavours of syrup, and as you can blend more than one flavour together (eg, vanilla and cherry), there really is no end to how creative you can be.

0 Comments | Posted By David Huggett

New Range of Barista Products

18 Aug 2015 12:44:28

New Range of Barista Equipment

We are pleased to say that A1 Coffee now stocks a new range of products. One of these products includes a variety of coffee tampers, one being the Luce tamper. The Luce is an inexpensive, alternative tamper that is making a name for itself on the current market. One of its main features includes it being extremely lightweight, weighing only 175 grams. Not only is it lightweight, but the handles are interchangeable, meaning you can match the colour of your tamper to the colour of the room you’re in, or just have a different colour for every day of the week!

Blue Tamper

Available colours include black, brown, red, green, blue and pink. The Luce tamper is available in 3 different base sizes, 53mm, 57mm and 58mm, and every size base has a very slight convex to it just to give that little extra when using it! This tamper is not only perfect for professional use, being inexpensive and classy, but it also makes a perfect gift for coffee lovers! Why not buy it for them in their favourite colour?

How to use a coffee tamper:

When using a tamper, keep a straight wrist. This will promote maximum tamping control. Turn your hip toward the counter and point your elbow up in the air to form a right angle. You will need to hold the tamper as if it was a doorknob. Still holding the tamper, use it to feel the height difference between the top edge of the tamper and the portafilter basket.

Coffee Tamping

Feel all the way round to check the height is even on all sides. Bend down and have a look, making sure the tamper is resting evenly on the grounds. If the tamper is uneven then that means the coffee grounds are unevenly compacted, resulting in an inconsistent extraction. Extreme force isn’t required to pack your espresso, and repeatedly doing so may cause long term, repetitive stress injury (RSI). Baristas use to be trained to use between 30-50 psi, however recently, many baristas believe tamping pressure is overrated. Tamp lightly to ensure that the coffee grounds are level in the portafilter, then lift the tamper and go in for a firm and even tamp. Now comes time to polish. Some people do it, other don’t. It all comes down to personal preference. Polishing is where the tamper is twisted on top of the coffee. People do this to normalise a thin layer of coffee on the surface. Now you are ready to brew!

Other new products:

We also stock the Presso range, which like the Luce features interchangeable handles. But because it is priced higher, the quality of the product is better. Being made from higher class materials, the Presso tamper also weighs a little bit more.

Coloured Coffee Tampers

Check our range of products now to make sure you don’t miss out on any great deals!

Even more new products?

We have also now expanded our range of frothing jugs – introducing bright new colours, etchings and different coatings.

In our range of etched jugs you can buy ones with either skinny, full fat, chocolate or soya etched down the side of the jug. This jug is made out of stainless steel and has a very professional look about it.

Red Milk Jug

Our new Teflon coated jugs come in black, red, green and blue. These jugs are super easy to clean as they have a non stick coating. With the different coloured jugs you can easily colour them to suit your needs. Not only are they great for professional use but they also make the perfect jug for home use, as you can match it to the colour of your kitchen, coffee machine etc.

Take a look at our wide range online today.

0 Comments | Posted By Elliott Huggett

Halloween Recipes

11 Aug 2015 08:50:57

Halloween Recipes

Halloween is just round the corner! Are you ready? – Whether you are planning some form of scary, fright filled gathering or just having a night in with the family; A1 Coffee has some of the best ideas and recipes to make your evening better than ever!

Pumpkin Spice Latte:

Everyone loves going to Starbucks and getting a pumpkin spice latte when its fall, but why not make your own for a fraction of the price? You can personalize it too if you really want!

Pumpkin Spice Latte



 -          1 or 2 tablespoons of Routin Pumpkin Spice syrup

 -          8 ounces of whole milk

 -          4 ounces of strong brewed coffee or espresso

 -          Whipped cream and ground cinnamon (optional)



 Microwave the milk on high for 1 minute (if you want frothy milk, then place hot milk in a blender after). Place syrup in the bottom of the mug, and then top with coffee and milk. Garnish with whipped cream and dust with cinnamon if desired.

You may also want to have a look at our website for our special Halloween coffee stencils. Try using these to create great artwork on top of your seasonal drinks!

Gross Gummy Worms:

 If you are hosting/attending an event with lots of kids, or purely want to just try this at home, we guarantee the kids will love you! You can use different syrups to make different flavoured worms, or add different food colourings!

Gross Gummy Worms


-          1 pack of plain, clear jelly mix

-          A selection of food colourings

-          A selection of flavouring syrups


-          Large handful of straws

-          Large elastic bands

-          Multiple bowls



 Mix the jelly in as many separate bowls as you want flavours (eg, if you want 4 flavours then you will need 4 separate bowls of jelly mix). Pour enough syrup into the jelly so that the colour is vibrant (if syrup is vibrant) and so that it smells quite strong. Once mixed, tie as many bunches of straws together as you do flavours, do this by wrapping an elastic band reasonably tight around to compress them together. Then place one bunch of straws in a small bowl, and proceed to pour the jelly mix into the straws, making sure that the jelly does not pour out of the bottom. Repeat this process for each flavour of jelly. Place all bowls in the fridge and let to set. Once set, take the straws out of the bowl and run under warm water, the worms will just fall out! So make sure you have something to catch them in!!!



Rotten Pumpkin:

This is an alcoholic drink for those devilish adults that can’t help but get into the Halloween spirit. Don’t be fooled though – this drink may look cool but it won’t take many to make you fall over!!

Rotten Pumpkin


-          500ml of orange juice (concentrate)

-          3 shots of vodka

-          Black food colouring

-          1 shot of Blood Orange syrup

Method :

Pour the orange juice and syrup into a medium sized glass and stir. Pour 3 shots of vodka into a small glass, then mix 10 drops of food colouring into it and stir. If the vodka still isn’t black then just add more food colouring. Once the vodka is black, layer it on top of the orange juice by pouring it slowly onto a teaspoon. Serve immediately.

0 Comments | Posted By Elliott Huggett

Smoothies & More

23 Jun 2015 12:05:27


Blend. Pour. Drink. Go.

When it starts getting hot outside, nothing goes down better than an ice cold fruit smoothie. And no matter how tempting it is to go to a smoothie bar in town, those blended concoctions are absolute bikini-busters! Making your own fruit smoothies are both great fun and extremely healthy for you. So here is a bunch of summer smoothies for you to try out!


Simple Mango Smoothie – serves 4

This is a plain mango smoothie. Very quick and easy to make but tastes great and the kids will love it too.



Using one of the glasses you are going to serve, fill it with the Sweetbird Mango Smoothie Mix, then pour that into the blender. Then pour ice into the same glass you just used, filling the ice to the top, pour the ice into the blender until you have 4 glasses worth of ice cubes in the blender. Again, using the same glass, pour 2 glasses worth of water into the blender. Wash the glass now. Blend all of the ingredients until the ice is crushed and its smooth. Serve immediately.


Blueberry Kick-start Smoothie

If you’re having a groggy morning, then your body is going to be craving a nutritional kick start to get you going! And let’s be honest, a double espresso isn’t quite just enough to get you going. Feed it NUTRIENTS. A boost of natural, caffeine free ingredients is all your body needs to get going and start the day properly.


  • 1 cup of frozen blueberries
  • 1 cup of vanilla soy milk
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 2 dashes of cayenne
  • ½ cup of ice


Place every ingredient into the blend. Blend until smooth and serve immediately.

TIP – if you don’t know how much a cup is, just use a mug because then at least you know all the measurements are going to be equal.

Banish the ‘Groggies’

The reason why this smoothie is so good for you and provides such a good kick-start is because it is ram packed with nutrients!

  • Banana – very high in potassium. High in energy and high quality carbohydrates.
  • Cayenne – cayenne is very stimulating and inspires circulation. A bold dose of cayenne wakes up your taste buds and senses.
  • Blueberries – are very rich in antioxidants, fibre and phytochemicals. Plus it has a sweet tasting energising flavour.


Fresh Basil Smoothie

This smoothie is great if you’re trying to get a flatter stomach. Greek yoghurt has 3x more protein and ½ the calories compared to traditional yoghurt.


  • 1 ¼ cups – fat free yoghurt
  • 1 cup packed full of fresh basil leaves    
  • ½ cucumber, chopped
  • 1 lemon squeezed
  • 1 teaspoon of dill
  • 1 cup of ice
  • 1 tablespoon of Splenda
  • 1 pinch of black pepper


Place everything into a blender and blend until smooth. Serve immediately.

We hope you enjoy these recipes, and of course, let us know if you have any hints and tips of your own that we can share.

0 Comments | Posted By David Huggett

Our Favourite Summer Drinks

4 Jun 2015 15:02:54

Favourite Summer Drink Recipes

It’s been a long week and you’re ready to hit the sun - here is our favourite ice cold drink to beat the heat! This recipe is alcohol free so the kids can enjoy it too! Not a fan of strawberry? Don’t worry, you can always just replace the syrup with another flavour from our huge range of Monin syrups. Maybe mango? Maybe mint? Personalise this refreshing recipe and tell us what you think. 

Sparkling Strawberry Lemonade

Monin Strawberry


1 glass of sparkling lemonade

2 shots of Monin Strawberry syrup

2 handfuls of ice cubes


Pour the lemonade and ice cubes into the blender, then blend until crushed. Add the strawberry syrup and mix. Serve Immediately.

Maybe you don’t want a fruity drink? Maybe you want your mug of coffee back! How about trying out this new easy way to make an iced coffee at home. It only takes 5 minutes and no unusual equipment required. All you need is your favourite espresso beans (we suggest Lavazza Super Crema), milk, optional flavouring and ice! If you like it creamy, then add more milk. If you like it sweet, add more sugar. If you want it flavoured then add some syrup. It’s your drink, make it how you like it.

Iced Espresso


14g double espresso (Preferably Lavazza Super Crema)

1 cup of cold milk

Sugar or coffee flavouring (optional, see our massive range of Routin and Monin flavouring syrups)

1 handful of ice


With your average double espresso (made with 14g of coffee beans), and transfer into a long glass. Take 1 cup of your favourite type of cold milk, whether it’s skimmed, semi skimmed or whole, and slowly pour over the espresso, making sure you leave enough room for the ice. If you want your iced coffee flavoured, then take 2oz of your favourite flavouring and pour into the glass. If you want it sweetened then add some sugar and mix now. Take 1 large handful of ice, either crushed of whole and place them in your espresso. VOILA!!! You’ve just made yourself your very own iced coffee. Now sit back, relax, and enjoy the summer.

For those special occasions where a little bit of alcohol isn’t frowned upon, you can always try and make our new Exotic Blue Champagne Cocktail. Its zesty, its tangy and it looks irresistible. Using a few of our new Routin 1883 syrups you can create your very own cocktails, ready for any occasion.

Exotic Blue Champagne Cocktail

Blue Curacao Syrup



  • Pour a small amount of sugar cane syrup into a saucer, then dip the rim of the champagne glasses into it.
  • then dip the rim of the champagne glasses into the caster sugar
  • Pour the vodka, orange syrup and blue curaçao syrup to the glass.
  • Fill to the top with champagne
  • Garnish with cherry and orange slice.

We really hope you give these quick recipes a try. They are utterly delicious and super fast to make. You can also use different flavours of syrup, mixing and matching them to create wild variations of these summer favourites. Or maybe you want to add a squirt of whipped cream to your coffee? Possibly even a flake if you’re feeling devilish!  

0 Comments | Posted By David Huggett

Coffee Shop Brand

30 Apr 2015 11:21:39

New 'Coffee Shop' Branded Coffee Beans

From tomorrow, we are proud to be launching a completely new brand of coffee beans. The brand is called quite simply 'Coffee Shop', and is aimed at the commercial market where quality and price are both equally important. Usually, one or the other has to give, so we have spent a huge amount of time and effort painstakingly devising a range of gorgeous blends while at the same time keeping the price down by avoiding glossy packaging and unnecessary extras. Just good, honest coffee in straightforward good quality black foil bags. This way, we have been able to create a range of truly great quality coffees at a surprising price. Don't be tempted to think that low prices mean low quality, we have worked hard to ensure you can now have the best of both worlds.

When you take a look at the range, you'll see that we offer both individual 1kg bags and cases of 4 x 1kg bags. This allows you to make up a mixed case, or try a kilo first before deciding on a larger purchase, plus of course it means this great brand is accessible to the home coffee enthusiast as well.

Take a look for yourself and start enjoying low prices and great coffee!


0 Comments | Posted By David

Easter Coffee Recipes

2 Apr 2015 11:19:25

Great Easter Coffee Recipes

As everyone knows, Easter is a time when we tend to eat foods that we don’t consume much of the rest of the year, though gone are the days when hot cross buns weren’t available to buy except at Easter. Now that the major coffee shop chains in both the UK and the US like to vary their drinks menu to offer seasonal variations on coffee and hot chocolate, it seems customers are now expecting to see new offerings in their local coffee house no matter what the occasion.

So here are a few of our Easter favourites that are so easy to make and add a bit of fun to your menu.

Easter Coffee

Marshmallow Bunny Mocha

This one is surprisingly good, and we can say this with some confidence – we genuinely made these ourselves last Easter and they were an instant hit. Here’s how to make yours: add 2 shots of prepared espresso, 1oz of either toasted or plain marshmallow syrup, and ½ oz of white chocolate syrup in a latte glass. Finish with around 12oz hot steamed milk and complete with some whipped cream and a few marshmallows for decoration. Not the lowest calorie coffee we’ve ever seen but worth blowing the diet for.

Sugar Free Chocolate Bunny Breve

OK, so this might sound like adding the word ‘bunny’ to the recipe is the only thing Easter-like about this one, but bear with us. Take a glass and add a single shot of prepared espresso, 1oz of sugar free chocolate syrup, and finish it off with around 8oz of steamed skimmed or semi-skimmed milk (depending on how guilty you’re feeling). Add some chocolate shavings to the top before serving. Your customers will love you for it.

Chocolate Amaretto Coffee

Although this is usually an alcoholic when made at home, you can make a non-alcoholic version for serving to customers too. Starting with a double espresso in a tall latte glass, add some steamed milk, a spoon of brown sugar and a three shots of syrup – chocolate, amaretto and vanilla. The vanilla is optional (as is the brown sugar) if you find it too sweet, or you can of course use more milk to keep the flavour but lose some of the sweetness. Serve with a couple of caramelised biscuits on the side.

We hope you enjoy trying some of these – Happy Easter from everyone here at A1 Coffee.

0 Comments | Posted By David Huggett

Mazzer Grinders

13 Mar 2015 10:03:20


Mazzer Grinders


We all know that online shopping has made life much easier when shopping for high-value items as we can now browse, compare and read forums and articles about anything we like before committing to a purchase. However, this can sometimes be a double-edged sword as too much information is not always a good thing.

Take our Mazzer coffee grinders for instance. We have been careful to include all the relevant technical specification you could ever wish for, and yet we still speak with customers on a daily basis who, after an hour or two of online browsing, prefer someone to explain things to them in plain English so they can make the right decision. Doesn’t seem like too much to ask for really!

We’ve put together this easy-to-follow no-nonsense guide to our Mazzer grinders which, together with the details on our product pages, should make choosing the right model easy.

What’s So Great About Mazzer Grinders?

We deal with Mazzer grinders because the build quality is simply astonishing as is their attention to detail. They’re pretty much indestructible and are designed to work all day long without missing a beat. You will find them in every Costa Coffee outlet, which is a fairly good recommendation that they’re pretty much bomb-proof. Once you have purchased one of these grinders, you can rightly expect it to work year after year.

Mazzer Grinders


What’s The Difference Between The Various Models?


We’ve ensured the technical specification is listed in full on each product page of our website. It’s a simple range to understand however, starting with the Mini and working upwards through the Super Jolly and Major models, onto the Kony and Robur, the grinders are progressively larger, with larger motors and larger blades. The size of the grinder you need will depend on the volume of coffee you into to grind.

Mazzer offers three variations on each model – the timer, the automatic and the electronic. A timer has a clockwork timer wheel on the side, and when turned, it will grind coffee until it returns to zero. An automatic has a sensor inside the doser chamber that ensures it remains full at all time – particularly useful for busy coffee shops where the barista cannot wait for each shot to be ground. An electronic model has a programmable keypad so you can precisely grind how much coffee you need each time.


Why Should I Buy My Mazzer Grinder With A1 Coffee?


We like to think there are a number of reasons. Firstly price – we offer the lowest delivered UK price on all Mazzer grinders, all the time. Not just short-term special offers, but low prices every day. We don’t ask customers to open trade accounts, and we don’t have different price lists for trade, etc. Everyone can buy with us at the published price. Our online store offers an easy and secure checkout process, reassuring if you are buying more valuable items like these. You can also talk with us and discuss your requirements before placing your order, unlike some of our competitors. Finally, we are an authorised Mazzer distributor.

Don’t forget that we also stock spares and accessories, such as bean hoppers, grinder brushes and grinder cleaning powder.

If you’ve been considering investing in a grinder that will last you for years, then there really is no other brand that does it as well as Mazzer.

0 Comments | Posted By David Huggett

Clic Sargent Update

6 Mar 2015 16:18:05

Update On Our Cancer Charity Donations

Clic Sargent

As you may already know, in July 2014, A1 Coffee teamed up with Clic Sargent, the UK’s leading charity for children with cancer. We make a 50p donation for every single box of our own Planet Java coffee that we sell, whether it’s coffee beans or cases of ground filter coffee.

We are pleased to announce a donation of £209 for the month of February, bringing our total since last July to £1,683. As always, our thanks go out to our loyal customers who continue to support us in raising money for this important charity and the amazing people they look after. We hope you'll continue to help us support their important work.

Also, take a look at Wig Wednesday - and keep an eye on our Clic Sargent pages for activities nearer the time.

Many thanks.

0 Comments | Posted By David Huggett
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