If you're a big fan of coffee in general, you know that certain kinds have their very own style of cups. Espresso is no exception. The cute, small cups in which your carefully crafted shot is served are all part of the espresso experience. But which espresso cups are best and why? What materials are in them? Does it even matter?
If you’re a big fan of coffee in general, you know that certain kinds have their very own style of cups. Espresso is no exception. The cute, small cups in which your carefully crafted shot is served are all part of the espresso experience. But which espresso cups are best and why? What materials are in them? Does it even matter?
The short answer is yes, it all matters! Today, we’re going to take a look at my picks for the ten best espresso cups on Amazon. I chose a bunch of assorted styles and sizes to help you get a good idea of what’s out there.
Read on to learn more about the different types and see which ones you like best.
Table of Contents
Best Espresso Cups at a Glance
Here’s a quick rundown of all the espresso cups we’ll be covering today.
Double walled borosilicate glass
Sized for single or double shots
Sweese Espresso Cups with Saucers
Real Deal Stainless Steel Espresso Demitasse
Durable stainless steel
Assortment of colors
Fellow Junior Double Wall Espresso Cups
Beautiful matte black finish
Double wall insulation
Ceramic won’t affect coffee taste
Classic white ceramic style
Spoons also included
Double walled borosilicate glass
Timeless pear shaped design
Encapsulate Italian coffee culture
What Are Espresso Cups Called?
Another name for espresso mugs or cups is demitasse cups. Demitasse is a French word that means “half cup,” and it’s pretty fitting since it’s roughly half the size of a traditional cup of coffee. Demitasse can indicate the amount of coffee in the cup, too.
With that said, espresso cups aren’t exclusively for espresso. You can serve Turkish coffee in these small demitasse cups, in addition to a few other rich or strong coffee drinks such as the concentrate you get from a moka pot or aeropress.
What Is the Best Material for Espresso Cups?
While there are many different espresso cup styles, they are usually made from only three kinds of material:
- Stainless steel
According to espresso drinkers far and wide, the material of choice for espresso cups is porcelain, hands down.
Why, you ask? For starters, porcelain is an excellent material for heat retention. It’s a less porous, fancy type of ceramic. As opposed to, say, a single wall glass or stainless steel cup, porcelain will keep your espresso hot until the last drop.
Secondly, it’s is attractive. Porcelain comes in many colors and finishes, which makes it easy to find a cup to suit your style. Many baristas prefer to serve a single or double shot of espresso in porcelain. It’s the classic way to enjoy this style of coffee.
Lastly, it’s microwave and dishwasher safe. Not that you’d microwave that perfect double espresso, but you could. I just don’t recommend it.
How Many Ounces in an Espresso Cup?
Equally important is the size of the espresso cup you use to serve up your espresso shots. A traditional espresso cup is two to three ounces (60 ml to 90 ml).
Of course, for the espresso lover that enjoys a good doppio lungo or a double shot of espresso, there are plenty of three to 4 ounce cups available so you can get your fill of that glorious dark brown nectar that practically flows through your veins.
However, keep in mind that you want a small surface area for espresso. A cup that’s too large will cause the crema to disappear, so aim for a small cup that’s just right for the volume you’re brewing.
The 10 Best Espresso Cups
So, now that you know a little more about espresso – aka: demitasse – cups let’s take a look at ten cups that will help you level up your espresso game.
This list was developed with both seasoned coffee aficionados and novices alike, so everyone will find something they enjoy for themselves or to gift to a friend.
DeLonghi Double Walled Thermo Espresso GlassesBuy Now on Amazon
First up are these DeLonghi double walled glasses. With a capacity of 2 oz or 60 ml, they are the perfect size for pulling single or double shots of espresso.
Being that they are double walled borosilicate glass, they’ll also retain heat very well. Plus, the small surface area at the top means you won’t have to worry about losing that fabulous crema!
I’ve awarded these DeLonghi demitasse cups the status of “best glass espresso cups” because of their performance.
Over 18,000 five star reviews have been given to these particular cups, landing them among the most popular insulated espresso cups on Amazon right now. A set of two sell for $22.99.
- Double walled borosilicate glass
- Dishwasher safe
- Perfect size for single or double shots
- No matching saucers
Sweese Espresso Cups with SaucersBuy Now on Amazon
The second demitasse cup style we’ll look at is this 4 oz (118 ml) Sweese porcelain espresso cup and saucer set. They are a bit larger than the other cups on this list, so they would be more suited to making a lungo or pulling a double shot of espresso.
There are several things I like about this set. First, you aren’t stuck with a single color when you purchase the set. Instead, you get a variety of compatible colors that look amazing together.
Next, this set is made of porcelain, which means it’ll retain heat well. Add to that the small surface area at the top of each cup, and you have the makings of the ideal vessel to hold an espresso.
The Sweese set is also dishwasher safe, which makes cleaning a breeze, especially after hosting parties.
Lastly, you get both cups and saucers together. It’s worth noting that the saucers have a large enough divet that the cups can’t slide around easily. If you’ve ever carried a cup and saucer set across a room, you know exactly what I’m talking about!
A set of six Sweese espresso demitasse is only $20.99, which is a real bargain. I’ve named this Sweese set the “best overall espresso cups.“
- Dishwasher safe
- 4 oz too big for a single shot
Real Deal Steel Espresso CupsBuy Now on Amazon
Moving forward, we have Real Deal Steel espresso cups. Made of double wall 18/8 food grade stainless steel with a powder coat finish, these espresso cups are the real deal! Sorry, I just had to.
These stainless steel espresso cups are available in natural steel, white, black, blue or a combo set with one of each color for $39.99. A set contains four cups.
Real Deal Steel espresso cups are durable and come with a versatile handle. They are the “best stainless steel espresso cups” I’ve found.
- Durable stainless steel
- Double walled
- Assortment of colors
- Stainless steel can alter taste
Fellow Junior Double Wall Espresso CupsBuy Now on Amazon
The next set of drink vessels on my list are these cool espresso cups from Fellow. And when I say cool, I mean really cool! So cool that I’m calling them the “best ceramic espresso cups.“
I can’t think of any espresso lover who wouldn’t enjoy pulling an espresso shot into these sleek, double walled cups. At 2.3 oz, they are great for single or double shots.
You can pick up a set of two Fellow Junior double wall espresso cups for $35.00 on Amazon.
They’re made in matte white and matte black. The latter is my favorite!
- Beautiful matte black finish
- Double wall insulation
- Ceramic won’t affect coffee taste
- Hand wash only
Aozita Espresso Cup and Saucer SetBuy Now on Amazon
This Aozita espresso cup set is one of the only stackable espresso sets on my list. If you don’t have much space in your kitchen or on your coffee bar, then this set is for you.
The vertical rack holds six 2.5 oz (75 ml) cups, six matching saucers and an equal number of espresso spoons. At $29.99, you get a lot of bang for your buck.
Being porcelain, heat retention shouldn’t be an issue. Those looking for classic white espresso cups will be quite pleased. Having spoons included is also a nice touch.
The only downside is the amount of surface area at the top of the cups, which means the crema will disappear more quickly.
- Classic white ceramic style
- Dishwasher safe
- Spoons also included
- Wider mouth may affect crema
Le Creuset Stoneware Espresso MugBuy Now on Amazon
The next mug on my list is the least affected by extreme temperatures. Le Creuset stoneware espresso mugs can go pretty much anywhere your cookware can go, even under a broiler.
On top of that, this mug is the most pricey of the bunch, which is why I nearly didn’t include it. Eventually, I decided to so you could see what a great deal some of the other options are on this list. Each Le Creuset espresso demitasse is $13.95.
Cost aside, this 3 oz or 90 ml cup would be a great piece to add to your coffee gear. Its size makes it ideally suited for double shots of espresso, but it can definitely be used for single shots as well.
- Fun colors
- High quality
- Super expensive
Ovalware Butterfly Handle Glass Espresso MugsBuy Now on Amazon
This set of two Ovalware butterfly handle glass espresso cups are really cool. Made of borosilicate glass, these 4 oz (118 ml) cups are similar in size to the Sweese brand set above. However, they have butterfly style handles instead of the more normal curved style.
I’m a big fan of Ovalware products. In fact, I named the Ovalware RJ3 the “best overall iced coffee maker” in my article on the 22 Best Cold Brew Coffee Makers of 2022.
Ovalware makes quality products, which is why I have no trouble recommending these espresso cups. On top of being double walled, they are also stackable, which makes for convenient organizing in one’s cabinets.
You can pick up a set of two for $17.99, which is quite attractive as well.
- Double walled borosilicate glass
- Butterfly handle
- Too large for a single shot
Cuisinox Porcelain Espresso CupsBuy Now on Amazon
If glass or stainless steel mugs aren’t your cup of espresso, you may enjoy this classic espresso cup set. The Cuisinox porcelain espresso cups are crafted from white porcelain, and come with four 2 oz (60 ml) cups and matching saucers.
These demitasse cups are the ideal size for a single shot of espresso. They are slightly thicker and heavier. As a result, these are what many people think of when they envision an espresso cup.
You can get a set of four Cuisinox espresso cups for $26.99.
- Timeless pear shaped design
- Dishwasher safe
Fima Hand Painted Italian Espresso CupsBuy Now on Amazon
I thought it was important to include one artisanal piece on this list. Each Fima hand painted Italian espresso cup is made by hand. Their look is based on the work of Raphael, the Italian painter who introduced such works in many of his frescoes.
My goal in including these works of art is to remind you that espresso is not just something you drink. It’s something to be enjoyed. Time should stop and to-do lists be put on hold when a cup of espresso is in your hand.
Fima two ounce espresso cups can be purchased for $65.00 on Amazon, and include a sip of Italian culture with them.
- Hand crafted
- Encapsulate Italian coffee culture
- Not cheap
BTaT Small Espresso Cups and SaucersBuy Now on Amazon
The $29.99 BTaT small espresso cup and saucer set includes six 2.4 oz (70 ml) cups and six matching saucers, perfect for coffee drinkers who love to entertain.
And let’s be honest, the white and gold trim make this the ideal set for when the queen comes over! Or at least your mother-in-law, who may think of herself as the queen.
- The queen probably won’t be coming by this year. Mother-in-law? TBA!
Winding Down Our Demitasse Discussion
In short, there are a ton of different styles of espresso cups. Pick out the one that best suits your style and taste or whichever type matches your other coffee gear.
Another important consideration is your daily espresso routine. That to say, whether you regularly pull a single or double shot determines if you need a larger cup.
Likewise, if you have other espresso drinkers over to visit, it probably would be nice to have cups and saucers for serving. Espresso makes a nice accompaniment to a sweet dessert!
Whichever cup you choose to go with today, make sure it brings you joy. Life’s too short to waste on something that you’re not crazy about!
Espresso Cups FAQ
As you may know, espresso is a concentrated and very flavorful way to enjoy coffee. Part of that enjoyment is the thin layer of foam on top. This foam, called crema, keeps all the goodness, heat and aroma of espresso inside the cup.
Small cups prevent the crema from spreading out and dissipating. Ideally, you want to have a nice, thick crema over your espresso. Therefore, a cup that is taller rather than wider is best.
Demitasse is the proper name for the cup used to serve espresso.
Aside from keeping your cup steady, the main reason you’d want a handle on your espresso cup is to keep from burning your fingers. If you have a cup that tends to get hot on the outside, you would want a handle. Double walled cups don’t need handles since the heat won’t travel to the outer part of the cup.
No, not all espresso cups have saucers, however, serving coffee with a matching saucer makes a lovely presentation for your guests. Be sure to include sugar cubes and a spoon for an Italian experience. Many coffee shops serve espresso cups on saucers. Some even add a cookie or two on the saucer, which makes a nice presentation.
The best way to clean an espresso cup is to hand wash it with warm water and mild dish soap. Stainless steel and glass are dishwasher safe. As always, check with the manufacturer for proper cleaning methods for your cup.