Businesses are always looking for that edge that sets them apart from the competition. It could be as simple as cutting prices, offering specials, or even making employees wear scantily clad barista outfits to pull customers in. The latter example resulted in a business having its license revoked by the city council. The business has also garnered the ire of the community as well.
On International Women Day, “Bottoms Up Espresso,” which has their baristas wear skimpy outfits, had its Napa County business license revoked by city council members in American Canyon. They argued the business was operating more like an adult entertainment business than a coffee shop.
“The business owner provided a ‘dress code.’ The costumes in the ‘dress code’ are revealing to a degree that the business meets the definition of an adult business per the city’s Municipal Code,” one city councilman stated.
According to Fox News, city officials received so many complaints against the business that the community director met with one of the owners.
“I met with one of the owners on Jan. 4, 2019 who informed me that he intends to require the employees at the American Canyon store to wear costumes that are as revealing as the costumes worn on staff at other Bottoms Up Espresso stores.”
Nate Wilson, who is co-owner of “Bottoms Up Expresso,” disagreed with the city’s assessment of his business. “We are a very classy business and pride ourselves on customer service and quality drinks. We have dress codes that expose less then you would see at a pool or beach.”
According to SF Weekly, reviews from customers on Yelp and Instagram seem to take issue with the outfits and the drink names over anything else. Sweet Cheeks, Blonde Bombshell, The Big O, and Screamer are some of the drink items on the menu.
Ralph Andino, an attorney for “Bottoms Up Expresso,” argued what the business is doing is not illegal. “Any person can wear any time the attire complained of by the city manager,” Andino wrote to the council. “This is not only a violation of a constitutionally protected free speech right, but of due process as well.”
There are nine other “Bottoms Up Expresso” locations in the state of California with additional plans to open in Arizona sometime in 2019. Wilson founded the first location in 2011 outside of Modesto, California.