• We believe in teamwork and partnerships so all those involved are recognised and rewarded fairly for their part in bringing you a delicious cup. We pay premiums ensuring growers always receive fair wages and are able to re-invest into their farms and communities.

  • The only way to be truly sustainable is to consider the needs of the planet in all our daily operations. We aim not just to minimise our impact but to make a positive change. We work with producers and partners who share these values.

  • We are a small team of serious coffee lovers who thrive on exploring coffee's diversity. We are passionate about presenting the most delicious flavour in our beans and brews. We can't wait to share this with you.

Sustainable coffee from seed to cup

  • Sourcing

    Our coffee beans are sourced from co-operatives certified for sustainable farming practices and smallholder farmers committed to traditional farming methods.

  • Roasting

    Our roaster is from Diedrich, a leading manufacturer of eco-friendly roasters. Its infrared burner and efficient design reduces roasting emissions by up to 50%.

  • Packaging

    All our packaging is 100% compostable and plastic free – including cups, lids and customer bags. We supply local wholesale in returnable 6kg tubs.

  • Delivering

    We deliver to local farm shops and cafés in our vintage 2CV delivery van – rescued, restored and re-invented like our horseboxes. For further afield we use Velocity carbon-neutral ecouriers.

Our story

Hello, I'm Emily

In 2014, after two decades working in the world of speciality coffee in London, I returned home to South Oxfordshire and reinvented my childhood horsebox as a mobile speciality coffee shop. My mission? Simply to share my love of ethical and sustainable speciality coffee with my local community and beyond. In 2015 Horsebox Coffee Co. was born!

Thanks to the amazing support from our local coffee-loving community, I've been able to realise another long-held dream – to set up a speciality coffee roastery...

Building direct relationships with green coffee producers.

Learning and sharing with them, whilst roasting with dedication, expertise and care.

Then having the opportunity of sharing our coffee passion, knowledge and skills with fellow local independent businesses with the same values.

Here's the Horsebox and Dark Horse story so far...

  • 1976

    Emily's mum Marigold buys the horsebox new in 1976.

  • 1976–2000

    The horsebox becomes a regular feature of family life, transporting Solomon (our namesake 'dark horse'), Brightstar and friends to local events.

  • 2000–2015

    After the horses sadly pass away in the early noughties, the horsebox is stored safely for 15 years in an old barn in nearby Cholsey. Meanwhile, Emily has moved to London to work in hospitality and the world of speciality coffee.

  • May 2015

    With a small business loan and the support of family and friends, Horsebox Coffee Co. is launched.

    Read more 
  • October 2016

    In response to local demand for Horsebox coffee, the diminutive Deux Chevaux Espresso joins the team.

    Read more 
  • August 2018

    Thanks to the support of fellow small local businesses, we realise the dream of opening our Dark Horse Roastery.

    Read more 
  • May 2021

    Having survived the Covid pandemic, we're keen to bring together once again people with a shared love of coffee. The opportunity to take on more space on the farm enables us to build our dedicated education space.

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Our team

  • Hi, I'm Alison

    I manage the Horseboxes.

    My perfect cup is a flat white – smooth and strong... sets me up for the day ahead!

    What I love about working here? The unique setting – the coffee, obviously, the company ethos and the people.

    When I'm not here I love spending time with Rosie my dog, and cooking.

  • Hi, I'm Ed

    I'm the roastery manager.

    My perfect cup is a Dark Horse americano or caffe latte, depending on the mood.

    What I love about working here? I get to taste so many single estate coffees and help develop new blends.

    When I'm not here I'm working on my 1962 Volkswagen campervan, Dolly.

  • Hi, I'm Eirini

    I'm a Horsebox barista in Oxford.

    My perfect cup is a Dark Horse oat latte.

    What I love about working here? The connection with the customers – they are all so lovely and so different!

    When I'm not here I'm going around taking beautiful pictures – I love photography!

  • Hi, I'm Paul

    I'm a Horsebox barista at Milton Park, and I help out at Dark Horse Roastery.
    My perfect cup is a Dark Horse caffe latte.
    What I love about working here? The opportunity keep up my barista skills, whilst serving lots of lovely customers, and to keep learning about speciality coffee.
    When I'm not here I'll be fishing!

  • Hi, I'm Felipa

    I do all the admin.

    My perfect cup is a flat white (so I can admire the latte art). At home, a simple filter.

    What I love about working here? The company ethos, the team and of course the coffee.

    When I'm not here I love a long walk, a cafe and a good book.

  • Hi, I'm Jon

    I lead on our community work and generally supporting the team.

    My perfect cup at the moment is from Eratoi, Timor-Leste.

    What I love about working here?

    No two days are the same!

    When I'm not here I spend time with our children, and dream of going sailing.

  • Hi, I'm Mia

    I'm a mobile barista and I help out with social media.

    My perfect cup is a flat white made with our Dark Horse blend.

    What I love about working here? The variety! I get to work at different locations and with different team members.

    When I'm not here I love to cook, see friends, or enjoy a bit of retail therapy.

  • Hi, I'm Tessa

    I'm a part time Horsebox barista in Oxford.

    My perfect cup is an almond milk cappuccino.

    What I love about working here? Chatting with customers, and my lovely Horsebox colleagues.

    When I'm not here I'll be studying politics at Oxford Brookes, skateboarding and performing in plays.

  • Hi, I'm Sam

    I'm a Horsebox barista in Oxford – Alison's number two, and trainee roaster.

    My perfect cup is a long, black, single origin filter.

    What I love about working here? Being part of a small company, the Horsebox's location in central Oxford, and the customers.

    When I'm not here I enjoy meeting up with family and friends in cafés around Oxford. 

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