After graduating from Ole Miss, Gretchen Williams moved out West to Long Beach California. After starting Heartbreak Coffee in 2013, Williams decided to return to Oxford in September 2016 and brought her business with her.
Williams had been working in the coffee industry for five years and felt it was time to move up in the coffee world. After several ‘heartbreaks’ while trying to pursue a career in the coffee business, Williams branched out and created Heartbreak Coffee, a light-roast specialty coffee company.
“I bought a roaster online the next day and started looking for ways I could grow my business,” Williams said. “In Long Beach, the store front properties were very expensive, so I had the idea of trying to do a mobile unit.”
After searching online for a mobile unit, Williams found a tan Volkswagen Bus on Craigslist that she purchased for Heartbreak Coffee. Williams enjoys the freedom that the bus provides for her business.
“I started Heartbreak Coffee before I bought the Volkswagen Bus, but I really loved the idea of being able to do pop-up’s at any location,” Williams said. “Once I got the bus, I painted the logo on the side and used it as free advertisement while driving it around town.”
The Volkswagen Bus has become a staple for Williams’ company and she has received a lot of positive feedback from both the Long Beach and Oxford communities.
“The business just blew up,” Williams said. “Two and a half years later, the business has got a pretty good following behind it. I have really been able to use and implement the Volkswagen Bus into the things I do with the company.”
After moving to back to Oxford, Williams was worried about bringing a light roasted specialty coffee to the area, however, has had a great response from Oxonians.
“People have really been enjoying the products and the overall experience they get from Heartbreak Coffee, the brand and the bus is something everyone loves to come see,” Williams said.
Heartbreak Coffee can be found at the Oxford Community Market on Tuesdays from three until six thirty and outside of the University of Mississippi Museum on Mondays from eight until noon. All other pop-up’s throughout the week will be posted on Heartbreak Coffee’s Instagram or Facebook page.
Savannah Woods is a social media intern for HottyToddy.com. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.