“Sleek, modern concrete home goods with an eco-minded approach.”
We have started offering this beautiful, hand-made drinkware in-store a wee while ago so it’s only fair we make the products available online too. And take the opportunity to tell you a little bit more about how they’re made and how the Café Béton x Throat Punch Coffee collaboration came about.
The designer and creator of this one-of-a-kind collection of serveware, Scott Durbin, is one of the most loyal regulars at our Dalry shop in Edinburgh. Through random conversations from behind the bar, we learned about Scott’s background working with concrete and his passion for the matter. Then one day, Scott came in with a box of prototypes he’d been working on.
Only at this stage Scott has told us that he had created a range of coffee cups for a local store back in the US and he is pursuing this venture here in Edinburgh now.
We were sold immediately! The cups look incredible; they have this fantastic texture on the outside, showing the concrete particles that they’re made of and, surprisingly, they are lighter than standard ceramic coffee cups. We compared and even weighed them, it’s true.
‘Reinvent your coffee ritual’ is the tag line behind Scott’s product, and it is so apt. We believe that excellent coffee should be served in an excellent cup. Café Béton cups not only look great, they feel different in your hand and even sound different putting the cup back on the saucer. So if you are a detail obsessed coffee connoisseur, this is THE cup for you.
Thanks to Scott being a friend, an all around legend and basically a neighbour, he was kind enough to show us his process and what it takes to create a Café Béton cup. Each cup is completely unique. The process starts with the concrete being poured into silicone moulds. Scott has designed these himself, but on top of that each batch of the concrete mass is different. It is created with small hardened concrete particles, giving a new life to what would otherwise be seen as waste. We like.
“As a side note, we have a reclamation process where if anyone accidentally breaks their cup or mug, all they have to do is send it back to us, they receive money off their next order, and we reclaim that concrete and break it down to be used in their new mug. It creates an incentive for a more sustainable, circular product lifecycle and an interesting relationship between product and user.” mentions Scott.
At Throat Punch we’re all about not adding to the issue of overstuffed landfills, so this was a major plus.
Back to the process though. After the cups solidify and are taken out of the moulds, the process of various sanding and seal treatments begins. Seeing Scott carefully examine the products truly highlights the difference between hand-crafted quality and mass production. The attention to detail from a true craftsman is unmatched!
So who’s Scott?
The founder of Café Béton. Obviously. He studied Product design in the US and continued his studies into a post-grad at Edinburgh Napier. Throughout his studies, working with various materials, conducting research for his thesis, Scott has discovered his passion for concrete.
“I started asking myself what can I do with this material, and how can I apply its advantages in new and unique ways. I knew from the beginning I wanted to create a product that addressed sustainability and Concrete was the perfect vehicle for this exploration.”
As someone who appreciates good coffee and a challenge, Scott eventually started exploring the possibility of creating drinkware and small home goods made of concrete. Since there isn’t anyone else with the same pursuit, there were many questions Scott had to address himself before launching his range. “Is it even possible to make a concrete coffee cup? Would concrete coffee cups function well? Would they be better than ceramic? Would they look good?” Turns out, yes, yes, arguably yes, and DEFINITELY yes!
Café Béton’s mission perfectly encapsulates the values in the core of quality coffee culture.
Small batch makes, products made to last, products encouraging to slow down and immerse yourself in the experience. This notion is also behind the business name.
“I went with the French-inspired Café Béton, which literally translates to ‘Concrete Cafe’, paying homage to the culture that inspired me to continue to grow this business.” says Scott, who spent some time living in France and even has family ties connecting him to France. Long story short, the man knows what he’s talking about.
We are huge fans. A small selection of Scott’s range is now available in our online store too. If you order a Café Béton cup(s), you’ll automatically get 20% off all of our coffee within the same order. Also make sure to check out cafebeton.com for the full range.