Red Hut Coffee in Phoenix Making a Stir Even Before Grand Opening

Categories: News

red-hut-screenshot-garfield-district-facebook.jpg.jpg
Screenshot from facebook.com/garfieldhistoricdistrict via Niki Norriega
Red Hut Coffee, located on the northwest corner of Seventh Street and Roosevelt, is brand-new to the neighborhood -- and already facing scrutiny, backlash, and a boycott after a Facebook post by owner David Marsh.

See also: 10 Best Coffee Houses in Metro Phoenix

On August 21, Marsh posted a photo on the Red Hut Coffee Facebook page with the caption "Spending the day hanging with friends at Red Hut! After this many 'non coffee' drinks, these new friends could use a nice cup of Red Hut signature blend coffee . . . black!"

The photo, which later was deleted, showed Marsh lying on the floor giving the camera a thumbs-up in front of two presumably homeless men, who appeared to be sleeping.

Screenshots of the original post and caption began circulating. By September 1, the screenshot had made its way to the Garfield District community Facebook page, where it was shared, along with a message from the admins:

"Neighbors,
A new business in our neighborhood decided to publicly exploit homeless people on their Facebook page. We are sharing this photo because we are sickened by this business owners serious lack of compassion and better judgement. We are calling for a boycott of red hut coffee. There are lots of local coffee shops in this 'hood that serve great coffee and treat people with respect. Please, do not support this business. Buy local!
"

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Red Hut Coffee

620 E. Roosevelt St., Phoenix, AZ

Category: General

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61 comments
Brad Wayne
Brad Wayne

Is there anywhere in the valley with more coffee shops than that street?

C Thomas Warmuth
C Thomas Warmuth

"Red Hut Coffee Company...poor taste in humor, great taste in coffee!"

seanmichaelcorbett
seanmichaelcorbett

Homelessness. It's a symptom. You're treating a symptom, and the disease rages on, consumes the human race. The fish rots from the head, as they say. So my thinking is, why not cut off the head?

jliven23
jliven23

I see the picture as a show of unity throughout the neighborhood. The owner took the time to put on a matching outfit down to the shoes.

Writer_Wrong
Writer_Wrong

We get offended by everything these days, don't we. Let's get over ourselves.

Margie Ane
Margie Ane

Don't see it like that at all...he was saying...they need a cup of black coffee...like maybe they are asleep....or had too much to drink...if he had something against homeless people he would call cops to get them away from his business....people need to chill....I don't think he ahtes the homeless. Reationary and extreme to say boycott and run him out of business without letting him have a chance to explain....seriously fascist....I have nothing but compassion for the homeless and would not shop at store if thought guy was looking to kick them in the teeth or mock them....

C Thomas Warmuth
C Thomas Warmuth

Free pizza?! Man I know where I'm taking my next drunk afternoon nap! Yes sir!

Corey Lee Busboom
Corey Lee Busboom

i am going there to buy coffee, this is blown way out of proportion .

philipem
philipem

Calling for a boycott because of what you perceived in the photo is out of line entirely. A person who cared about others would at LEAST ask the owner to respond to their concerns about the meaning and motivation for the photo. OK the photo offended some, not others, but at what point do you say "ruin this person" because of it, without even asking them what happened? Seriously!
 And who exactly are these 'admins' to make that choice for the entire district? It's not like it was their own personal page they were using! Shame on THEM.

Jody Chandler
Jody Chandler

Give them a break. The "Internet" needs to be more forgiving!

Mein Vater
Mein Vater

yes...seems they all have lost it

fmkd
fmkd

There is a family owned business trying to bring business to the down town area. He thought he was making a joke, it was taken wrong and he apologized twice. I find it disturbing that people want to see this family fail over what started out as a joke.

Matt Rosen
Matt Rosen

It was a bad joke... I don't see what the f'n big deal is... guy was excited to have a new business and tried to make the best out of hobos sleeping outside his place... chill out jiggas.

Louise Stevens
Louise Stevens

It's not a crime if you're drunk in public, photographed and used to promote a coffee shop because then you have been *magically* transformed into a victim. o_O

Axé Alex Pirulito
Axé Alex Pirulito

am I the only one who is thinking... Public intoxication is a crime?

Garyn Klasek
Garyn Klasek

Hell, i'm sure that he could easily give his day-olds to svdp and/or the andre house.

DryHeat
DryHeat

The fact they were "presumably homeless" does not mean they were homeless. They could be high on bath salts...they could homeless vets. Who knows?!

Susan Martin
Susan Martin

I think it was a horrible thing to do. He apologized but AFTER he took pictures of these guys without permission and joked about their drunkenness. His business is located in an area with a ridiculous homeless issue and he didn't use the best judgement. I see this as a learning moment: He could start a program around the homelss...But actions have consequences........and this was a really bad action.

Garyn Klasek
Garyn Klasek

I just don't like that we have to hear his side over theirs. Sure, it ain't the worst action of a businessman but it smacks of obnoxiousness. Fact is, i wouldn't have gotten coffee there if this drama hadn't occurred, and i live near there.

C Thomas Warmuth
C Thomas Warmuth

I'm sure the owner of this coffee shop is sweating this pretty hard right now. For him it was a harmless joke that went haywire. For the dudes laying on the ground it was just another fucking day in this sweltering concrete block of a city trying to stay cool and rested. For the New Times its a lot like writing a news article about something that isn't news which isn't really that important. For the reader it a chance to form an opinion on the internet about a dude (and a company) you've never even met, which is what I've done since I have a lot of free time. hooray. I've heard of business owners treating the homeless A LOT less kindly: for example when Roger Garfield shot and fucking killed Robert Cain for being a homeless weirdo in his antique store. http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/valleyfever/2010/04/roger_garfield_receives_seven-.php Now that was fucking news! CHEESUS CRISPT! This coffee shop guy gave these dudes pizza and hung out with them. And he took a pic in poor taste. You know how many local coffee shops I have been to that HANG..... FUCKING HANG!!!!! art student homework....like life drawing homework in there less-good-than-Starbucks $8 coffee shop bulllshit place trying to SELL IT? 2! That's how many! 2!... Who does that?! That's poor taste. That's the travesty!! And yes Starbucks is of the Devil because they sold their soul for the best coffee. No big deal. How many snooty fucking local businesses feed drunk hobo's pizza and are cool to them? Not too many. In my experience local businesses are usually a lot more concerned about their own survival that being an actual part of a community and embracing the locals on all levels like David seems to have, Kimber Lanning being a huge exception here, she's just always been and always will be a bad ass and no I don't give a shit what her opinion on this is, she's still the coolest local business owner I've ever met either way. For a news article to come out days before you're grand opening and make you look like a total dick is nothing fun. "Non-coffee drinks" means these dudes were probably getting nice and hammied, This guy David Marsh probably just has better sense of humor than you. Its not a photo of him beating the crap out of these dudes captioned, "Come get wired on coffee and help me kick the shit out of these hobos!" Homelessness sucks. I know, I've been homeless... well homelessish (I know how to get by) and its a big bummer but ya gotta have a sense of humor about these things otherwise you're prolly just an asshole whether you're homeless, defender of the homeless, a bored soccer mom who heads a local biz community website or otherwise. It wasn't mean spirited. But the way the Garfield district reacted was. A boycott? really? Not too busy downtown much these days eh? Instead of picking on local businesses why don't ya fix the fucking homeless situation ya dingus!?! SHEESH! Why don't ya like homeless people being in photos ya dumb dumbs?

Linda Moran
Linda Moran

I will support this coffee shop. I don't believe they were trying to insult anyone. People need to chill..get a decaf, would ya!

Gerald T. Gavin
Gerald T. Gavin

Some cold hearted people on this thing. Should the store owner lose his business. No. These guys sleeping on the ground are likely homeless and destitute. They shouldnt have slept there. Ask them to please move on. Mocking them online? Cmon. Funny for a second until you think how bad these guys lives are. I was brought up to pick on someone my own size. Punching women and pissing on the poor isnt my cup of tea. You dont know their story. Count the number of comments with any compassion for these poor bastards. Too sensitive? No fucking empathy.

blisteredimages
blisteredimages

Jeez everyone needs to get those GIANT sticks out of their asses!!!  It was a freaking joke.  I posted a similar picture with the Mexican crew that worked on my roof and photoshopped it to say Welcome to Arizona with me giving thumbs up.  That is WAY worse than what this guy did.  People are so damn hoity toity nowadays.  What makes you guys so much better????  Exploiting homeless people??? REALLY????  GO SLEEP BEHIND A DUMPSTER OR UNDER A BRIDGE FOR CHRIST'S SAKE.  NOT IN FRONT OF A BUSINESS.  

Craig Penrod
Craig Penrod

I agree with Ted. Anyway, in America these days a small business like a coffee shop is doomed to inevitable failure. The American Dream is really the American nightmare in this corporate owned country.

Cree P Don
Cree P Don

Garyn, they are locally based. a google search will clear that up for you in 2 seconds. Who gives a shit about taking a picture of some homeless people sleeping? None of the people offended by this were running down there to help this poor fellows so I don't get it. I for one will be going to this guys coffee shop just to piss all the people that want to boycott it off. Guy just wants to run his own business and people want him to fail? WTF is that about?

Andrea Krejci Todd
Andrea Krejci Todd

Wait a minute...a photo of a lapse in judgement, followed by an apology is worse than that loon of a woman over at Amy's Baking? Nobody called a boycott on her psychotic ass. She was purposeful in her awful treatment of other humans. I'm pretty sure this man learned a lesson.

David Bremson
David Bremson

I'll be there tomorrow. One large coffee please.

James Wasil
James Wasil

I find that offensive, too! (no I don't, just kidding. But if I did, it would go great with this article, right?)

Josh Skora
Josh Skora

Everybody's so easily offended nowadays. Society has turned into a bunch of fucking pussies...

Nikki Walton
Nikki Walton

People are too sensitive these days and try to sympathize with scenarios they aren't fully informed about. Let's ask the 2 sleeping guys how they felt and if they were victimized. If they aren't offended then move the f*ck on! Who is Garfield Historic District and what are they doing for the homeless or drunks after the clubs let out(I don't know if these guys were homeless and I won't assume)? This guy feed them yet GHD is calling for a boycott trying to tell others how the SHOULD feel about something perceived. It's people like this that take a benign incident and turn it to a MAJOR CONTROVERSY which it clearly isn't!

G Bø Tta
G Bø Tta

It's tasteless, compassionless & not very professional for a business man. Also: KARMA comes back to haunt- I bet his coffee shops fails thanks to Starbucks.

christopher.fong
christopher.fong

Garyn, I can't find anything saying they are not a locally based company. How do you know they are not a local company? By the way, dood is not a word.

Candiece Mili Shields
Candiece Mili Shields

Controversy? Good Heavens! I think it's funny - and I volunteer with the homeless and mentally ill. (and have come very close to being homeless...it's not over yet!) Would they rather see you with a broom in your hands pretending to sweep them away? I think this shows that you welcome them as new customers - maybe a few "freebies" to keep the new neighbors happy! I think they make great security! If I am in your neighborhood - I am definitely stopping in to give you my business!

Pete Facundo
Pete Facundo

Every time I see a bunch of brown people laying on the ground and some white guy next to them with his thumbs up, I can't help but think of Abu Ghraib.

Randy Bell
Randy Bell

After reading the article it seems that the Admin could have handled this in a more open and encouraging way.. They seemed just as judgmental even though Red Hut apologized in a humble manner.

Rob Zemeida
Rob Zemeida

This is so dumb. People just relax cheese n rice! ;)

philipem
philipem

And the irony of the line that goes "Many of us have spent years trying to help build a more tolerant attitude towards the people..." I mean where is the tolerant attitude toward a non-homeless person? Where is there any attempt to understand accept or correct?

TaxpayingVoter
TaxpayingVoter

@Andrea Krejci Todd Yeah.  The lesson he learned was that there are far too many people in this town with sticks up their asses and a taste for blood.

TaxpayingVoter
TaxpayingVoter

@Josh Skora Seriously.  Everyone jumps to an immediate conclusion and calls for the figurative or literal destruction of a person's reputation or business.

Doesn't it just make more SENSE to gather all the data and facts first and THEN consider taking action or not?

Flying into outrage is today's most popular occupation, it seems.  Too bad it doesn't burn calories or we'd be a nation of fit people.

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