London Coffee Shop Slammed for Pattern of 'Racist' and 'Fatphobic' Jokes

A London coffee shop is facing backlash after Twitter users called out the store's alleged 'racist' and 'fatphobic' behavior.

Self-described on their website as a "provocative coffee shop with a cheeky atmosphere," F*ckoffee says the store aims to be a "place that engenders freedom of expression, self-determination and a passion for the environment."

However, not all guests are thrilled with this commitment to so-called free speech—especially when it involves what many feel is the use of deeply offensive humor.

Twitter user @luisiachristie posted a photo taken at the store on Tuesday, showing a wooden bench with a printed sign that reads, "SORRY NO FATTIES," taped to it. "Just got sent this by a friend," she wrote, "[and] before you defend [it] as 'dark humor' it's not—it's fatphobia."

She also posts screenshots alleging that F*ckoffee posted their own photos of the bench and accompanying messages on its social media accounts. These original posts appear to have since been taken down.

Outraged at the display of apparent anti-fat prejudice, Twitter users flocked to the replies to share their own observations regarding the cafe. One Twitter user, @_katiemeehan shared screenshots of racist, anti-Black memes posted by F*ckoffee's Twitter account earlier this month. Another screenshot captures a meme whose punchline is a rape joke, also tweeted this month.

They’re racist AF too pic.twitter.com/9BdAoq3heM

— Katie Meehan (@_katiemeehan) April 26, 2021

Also featured are screenshots from the cafe's Instagram page, in which F*ckoffee appears to have posted photos of offensive messages on their sidewalk A-frame chalkboard.

"You're not pregnant," reads one sign, "you're just fat."

Another, from January, features a racist, anti-Asian joke about the COVID-19 pandemic.

Some more racism on the https://t.co/ptee7Xfe1d account...

Link to post: https://t.co/0ckyyLC6d5 pic.twitter.com/hJfIJgS3PG

— Luisa-Christie 💙 (@luisachristie) April 26, 2021

Other posts collected in the thread demonstrate further examples of alleged ableism and racism by the coffee shop, which appears to have more than one Instagram account and location.

In response to the fierce criticism, F*ckoffee released a statement on Instagram. They also appear to have taken down some of the offensive posts.

The statement reads: "I would like to take this opportunity to apologize for any racially sensitive imagery that has been posted on behalf of F*ckoffee. I take full responsibility. As a Black person, I saw this as satirical and mocking the stereotypes with which society stigmatizes us. My perspective is not yours, and you should not be forced to view it. I will stress that our humor may cut close to others' sensitivities, but at no point does it emanate malicious intent."

However, users are still not satisfied. Based on the Twitter thread, and screenshots of a conversation between @luisiachristie and an alleged former employee, commentators pointed out that it appears this statement is not from the cafe's owner, who seems to be a white man, but from a friend of the owner who posted the "racially sensitive imagery" in question.

On F*ckoffee's Instagram page, a "highlight reel" on their page titled "BOSSMAN" features photos of a white man, some of which refer to him as Adrian. Some past media coverage of the coffee shop identifies this man, Adrian Jones, as the business owner, while some other articles refer to him as a "manager."

Considering that the shop appears to have more than one Instagram account and the statement was not officially attached to a specific name or person, it remains unclear who was responsible for the posts.

So far, F*ckoffee has made no public mention of the several other allegations lodged against them, including fatphobia and ableism.

A shot of Espresso
A shot of espresso being pulled. Matthew Horwood/Getty Images