In 2018, a Philadelphia Starbucks employee called the police on two Black patrons. Their crime? Waiting for a friend. The cops still arrested them.
More recently, Starbucks sent an internal memo to its employees banning them from wearing accessories or clothing that shows support for the Black Lives Matter movement.
BuzzFeed News obtained the memo, which reminded staffers of the company’s accessories policy that forbids accessories that “advocated a political, religious or personal issue.” A number of employees told the outlet that the company commonly permits and even advocates that employees don pro-LGBTQ+ pins, particularly during Pride Month in June.
When next you feel the need for some Starbucks, you may want to consider these Black Owned Coffee and Tea Businesses instead.
Black Owned Coffee and Tea Businesses
Grind House Coffee Co. (Huber Heights, OH) offers differing blends and flavors from as far away as southeast Asia to the mugs of Daytonians, as well as customers across the U.S. through online sales.
South LA Cafe (Los Angeles, CA) provides coffee, tea, and healthy and affordable food options to the South LA community.
Uprising Muffin Company (Washington DC) offers homemade muffins, coffee, sandwiches & salads served in a relaxed setting with comfy seating.
Northwest Coffee Roasting Company (Clayton, MO) is an artisan coffee roaster that embodies the legacy of coffee by unifying communities, stimulating dialogue, and providing hand roasted and brewed full city coffee.
Teatopia (St Louis, MO) offers 70 different teas as well as other small food items that will leave you amazed and wanting more.
TeaLee’s Tea House & Bookstore (Denver, CO) provides high-quality loose leaf teas, food, and specialty drinks, including beer and wine in an afro-centric atmosphere.
Uncle Bobbie’s Coffee & Books (Philadelphia, PA) is a cool coffee shop and bookstore that also hosts live events like book signings and movie screenings.
Sip & Savor (Chicago, IL) offers the finest certified fair trade coffee from around the world, as well as a wide selection of teas, mochas, lattes, and blended drinks. They also serve delicious pastries and small bites from local bakeries.
Black Swan Espresso (Newark, NJ) is Newark’s first Specialty Coffee and Tea Shop. They specialize in using the highest quality international coffee beans in all their roasts.
Red Bay Coffee (Oakland, CA) is building a global community through our commitment to sourcing, developing, roasting, and delivering the best and most beautiful coffee to the people.
Upper Cup Coffee Co. (Columbus, OH) offers house-roasted espressos & creative pours are the focus of this brick-walled cafe with sandwiches.
Whittier Cafe (Denver, CO) is an artsy coffee shop with a lending library & a cozy patio serving espresso-based drinks & cafe fare.
Sankofa Video Books & Cafe (Washington, DC) is a relaxed coffeehouse offering light cafe bites plus African-focused books & film screenings.
Cuples Tea House (Baltimore, MD) is a family-owned and operated tea business offering featuring premium loose leaf teas, tea accessories, and culture in a socially connected atmosphere.
Kaffeine Coffee Internet & Office Cafe (Houston, TX) is a relaxed, funky cafe featuring coffee, sandwiches & baked goods, plus Wi-Fi & printing services.
Not So Urban Coffee & Roastery (Oxford, GA) is a small batch micro roaster specializing in responsibly, ethically & sustainably sourced coffee from Africa, South/Central America, and Asia.
Golden Thyme Coffee & Cafe (St Paul, MN) is an easygoing place with a warm vibe offering a variety of coffee blends named after your favorite jazz artists, bagels, cakes, and many other delightful treats.
More Than Java Cafe’ (Laurel, MD) is a vibrant outpost featuring classic cafe dishes, espresso drinks & ice cream, plus live music nights.
Amalgam Comics & Coffeehouse (Philadelphia, PA) is a comic book store and coffee shop hybrid that offers everything from comics, toys, games, and figurines, to coffee & espresso related beverages, and baked goods.
Ain’t She Sweet Cafe (Chicago, IL) is a casual, cozy eatery offering counter-serve sandwiches, smoothies & house-baked desserts.
Cafe Dejena (Oakland, CA) is a local Eritrean café that offers dine-in meals all day, grab & go for those on the run, and catering for small events.
Beyu Caffe (Durham, NC) is an upbeat, bohemian hangout offering coffee, all-day American fare, a full bar, live jazz & free WiFi.
Boon Boona Coffee (Seattle, WA) sources the finest coffee, from the birthplace of coffee, East Africa.
DC Conscious Cafe (Washington, DC) is “more than a cafe”. They offer good food, dialogue, entertainment, civic engagement, and advocacy for the good of our community.
Serengeti Teas & Spices (New York, NY) introduces the history, magic, sumptuous taste, and exotic flavors of Africa via signature coffees, teas, cocoas & spices.
Rise and Grind Café (Milwaukee, WI) offers hot and cold sandwiches, soups, breakfast items. They also offer catering and meal planning services.
Calabash Teahouse & Cafe (Washington, DC) is a popular teahouse ready to help you with foods & teas for dynamic living.
Urban Grind Coffee House (Atlanta, GA) is a hip coffeehouse with cafe menu & free WiFi holds film screenings, poetry slams & other arty events.
Just Add Honey Tea Company (Atlanta, GA) is a sophisticated twist on a southern tea tradition we offer thoughtfully blended loose leaf teas made in small batches to ensure the perfect cup cheers!
Tsion Cafe & Bakery (NY) is a petite, stylish cafe featuring contemporary Ethiopian cuisine in a warm space with patio seating.
Culture Coffee Too (Washington, DC) is a coffee shop, art gallery, live performance venue, and event space, with a mission to bring delicious coffee