The espresso toolbox Project

As an amateur barista, I am proud of my machine and I am also proud of all the accessories that I use to operate it: tamper, single shot, double shot and bottomless portafilters. I love their heavy weight and how they look. I find their shinny chromed parts to beautifully contrast with their plastic black ones.

The dilemma
One of the challenges when I started using my machine was to find a good place to store all of the accessories. My wife suggested putting them in one of the kitchen drawers. To be honest, I felt bad when I started storing them in there. I organized them and try to align them, but the next time I opened the drawer they were a mess. I had to move around some things to be able to find what I was looking for. I was also worried that the parts where hitting each other every time I opened and close the drawer. 

When I told about my problem to my coffee lover friends, some of them laugh and told me: “at least you have a full drawer for your coffee stuff.”

After a fruitless search online, it seemed obvious that I would have to build my own organizer to store my tools. I wanted something that would not only hold everything on its place, but that it will also serve as a frame to proudly display my tools.  

I decided I would make my box out of wood. Everyone can agree that: steel and wood look good together. I wanted to give it an industrial look, something you would find in an old neighborhood brick walled loft.   For the interior, I wanted a custom design that would hold each piece on its place, but that would also look elegant and help protect them. I settled for a black, soft material that will not scratch the metal. Finally, I wanted it to be personal. These are my tools, I use them every day to craft something I like. The wood will make it unique, but why stop there? I wanted to include my initials in the box (“LAG”.)

The outcome
The final result was exactly what I was looking for. An industrial looking espresso toolbox that keeps everything on its place and that is aesthetically appealing. It was a lot of work, but I think that the result speaks for itself. Here showing the layout for two portafilters
espresso toolbox for two portafilters

What happened next?
We were so very happy with the end product that we created more espresso toolboxes for some of our espresso lover friends and all of them have been very grateful with it.

Believing that this will be a great addition for all the people who want to proudly store and organize their portafilters we set our mind on being able to offer this as a product available for more people. Starting today, we have them available at eBay (two portafilters or three portafilters) and also at our online store. You can find them with the setup for two or for three portafilters.

This could be a perfect gift if you have an amateur barista as spouse or friend. We can personalize it with up to three letters when you order it.

The model displayed fits espresso machines that have a 58 mm tamper or E61 group head, including the following:
  • Rancilio: Silvia, Epoca S1, Epoca ST1
  • Quick Mill: Vetrano, Andreja Premium, Anita, Alexia, Silvano
  • Izzo: Alex, Alex II and Alex Duetto
  • Rocket Espresso: R58 V2, Giotto Premium Plus, Giotto Professional, Giotto Evoluzione,
  • Cellini: Premium Plus, Professional, Evoluzione, Classic
  • Grimac Royal Falcon: la Valentina
  • Expobar: Brewtus II, Brewtus IV, Office Lever, Office Lever Plus, Office Control
  • Vibiemme: Double Domobar, Domobar Super, Domovar Junior 
  • ECM Germany: Technika IV, Barista, 
  • Bezzera: Mitica, Magica, Unica
  • Isomac: Alba, Millennium, Tea
  • La Nuova Era: Cuadra
  • Famea: Carisma
  • Pasquini: Livia G4
  • Gaggia: TS
  • among others...

Remeber to visit us at: to get yours!

The "Illy Coffee empty cans" Project

The question that has plagued humanity for decades has finally an answer: What to do with your empty cans of Illy coffee?

If you are like me, every time you reach the bottom of an Illy coffee can you are left with a challenging decision: Should I throw it away or keep it? On one hand, the cans are so beautiful. Their shiny body and red branding make us believe that a trash can or a recycling center is not the right place where it belongs. On the other hand, we already have 4 or 5 of them stored on our shelves without serving any purpose, and the number continues to grow!

If you Google: "what to do with empty Illy cans" you will find that several people have asked this same question before and that most of the standard responses do not do justice to their looks. Some of the answers involve recycling, painting or cutting them.

Some months ago, my wife and I realized that the number of cans at our kitchen was starting to accumulate, and we decided it was time to do something beautiful and useful. From the many ideas, we generated we chosen to go for a pop art (very Andy Warhol-ish) set of containers for our kitchen.

These are perfect for storing things such as coffee (duh!), sugar, rice, pepper, and others. Something cool of this design is that the lid and spoon can be temporarily "held" by the can. You will see how this is possible.


8 Cans of Illy coffee (The main reason to do this)
1 Metallic board (23"x17")
8 Industrial looking bolts (at least 3in long)
16 Nuts for the bolts above
2 Wall screws (long enough to pass through the board and go at least 1/2" into the wall
8 Strong magnets*
1 Bottle of strong glue (we used Gorilla glue)

* Note on the magnets: we tried several types and sizes, including small ones, magnetic tapes with adhesive, but we found that the ones that work the best were big magnets (1"x2"x1/2") from Home Depot. The stronger the magnet you select the more weight you will be able to put on the cans without they becoming out of balance.
Wall Screws
Magnetic Board