Monday, December 30, 2013

The F Word: Starbucks Lawyers Go After Cottleville Brewery for "Frappicino" Beer

Posted By on Mon, Dec 30, 2013 at 8:00 AM

click to enlarge Jeff Britton, owner at Exit 6 Pub and Brewery. - YOUTUBE
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  • Jeff Britton, owner at Exit 6 Pub and Brewery.

Starbucks Coffee Company is $6 richer after going after Cottleville's Exit 6 Pub and Brewery for calling a drink the "Frappicino."

After receiving a cease-and-desist letter from the coffee giant, brewery owner Jeff Britton sent "Mr. Bucks" a letter apologizing that three of his customers referred to his vanilla creme ale and stout concoction as a "Frappicino." He even sent a check to repay the company for the profits he gained from the beer -- a full $6.

"We are bad people. We feel shame," Britton writes in his masterfully satirical response to Starbucks. (Read the full letter below.) "We never thought that our beer-drinking customers would have thought that the alcoholic beverage coming out of the tap would have actually been coffee from one of the many, many, many stores located a few blocks away."

Britton tells Daily RFT he couldn't help but be amused that the international, multibillion-dollar company was keeping its eye on his Cottleville bar, named Exit 6 because he founded it to "exit" from his corporate life.

click to enlarge The $6 check, now on a T-shirt. - FACEBOOK
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  • The $6 check, now on a T-shirt.

"I just thought it was funny this giant corporation was spending all this money on lawyers for me," Britton says. "I wish that I had the money to shit away on lawyers like Starbucks does."

Starbucks caught Exit 6's trademark infringement after customers posted the beer -- which Britton now calls "The F Word" -- on Untapped, an online check-in site for breweries.

"It kind of turned into a glass of really good deliciousness," Britton says of his drink, a splash of Founders Breakfast Stout over a glass of Exit 6's vanilla creme ale, the brewery's most popular beer. "A couple of customers had a pint of it, and they said, 'This tastes like a Frappucino.' But Starbucks saw that and said, 'Don't do that.'"

See also: Only the Red Sox Charge More for Beer Than the Cardinals

Starbucks' lawyers asked Britton to declare in writing that he wouldn't call his beer the Frappicino anymore, which Britton did -- with a little help from his friends.

"I won't deny there might have been a few pints involved," he says.

Continue reading for the full text of the letters from Starbucks and from Exit 6 Pub and Brewery.

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