Our history

We know great tasting coffee.

London, born and blended since 1971


We've 50 years' experience of crafting the finest quality coffee. From revolutionary methods and commitment to quality to unforgettable successes that have made Costa Coffee the Nation’s Favourite* coffee shop, our story is as unique as our coffee.

But first, let’s start with how every good story should. At the very beginning.

The Costa Coffee story began back in 1971 when Sergio and Bruno arrived in London with a burning desire to make great tasting coffee a part of everyday life.

Setting up a small roastery in Fenchurch Street, they committed to crafting the finest quality coffee.

It was here the Costa brothers blind-tested 112 variations of coffee before they tasted one good enough to be our signature blend. They named it ‘Mocha Italia’ and it remains our signature blend to this day.

Our Signature Blend

Our iconic Signature Blend is the perfect combination and balance of delicate Arabica and strong Robusta beans, precisely slow roasted for a minimum of 18 minutes to ensure the beans keep their hearty flavour, rich aroma, and smooth taste.

Perfect from crop to cup

Ever wondered how we create our coffee? We’d like to reveal a few secrets. From coffee’s discovery to the ways we harvest our beans today and make the perfect selection for slow roasting, the history of coffee might surprise you.


The Costa brothers stored their coffee under the railway arches in Lambeth, their unique shape creating the ideal conditions to keep the coffee fresh and flavourful

Moving on up

Old Paradise Street street signIn 1978, as demand for their coffee grew, so too did their premises, moving to South London where the brothers transformed a huge plot of grassland into a brand-new roastery.

The new site was located on Old Paradise Street, Lambeth, where the Costa Coffee roastery remained until 2017.

From here, Sergio and Bruno produced and distributed their signature blend to some of the most esteemed establishments in the city.


Before we opened our famous coffee shops we sold our coffee beans to prestigious hotels in London, such as The Ritz, and they were delivered in style by famous London black cabs

From strength to strength

Exterior view of the first Costa Coffee storeIn 1981, the brothers opened their first Costa Coffee shop in Vauxhall Bridge Road.

It was in this innovative shop that the brothers became the first coffee providers in London to serve Espresso and crafted Cappuccino in porcelain cups so that customers could experience coffee at its best.

Soon shops started opening up across prestigious locations in London, becoming destinations for fashionable Londoners.

What's next?

From bean to cup, our state-of-the-art Roastery is where it all begins.

**The open text question “What is your favourite branded coffee shop chain?” was asked to an independent panel of over 4,000 UK coffee shop consumers with 53.1% answering Costa Coffee. See here for full terms and conditions.