Bikini Baristas Badmouth Beastly Boss

Employees of a Bikini Beans Coffee franchise in Phoenix, AZ, have filed a federal lawsuit against the owners, claiming withheld tips, forced work without pay after their shifts and a hostile work environment.

At Bikini Beans Coffee, where baristas in skimpy swimwear serve cold brews and chai lattes, the bikini represents “empowerment, freedom, functionality, and togetherness.” That’s how the local coffee chain’s marketing copy describes things, at least.

At odds with these vague ideals of female empowerment is the actual work culture at Bikini Beans, according to multiple former employees interviewed by Phoenix New Times. They describe a harsh and controlling work environment where the staff members — many of them young women between the ages of 18 and 21 — are frequently subject to verbal abuse when they don’t properly greet the store’s owners, and where baristas’ tips are confiscated if they are late by only a few minutes.

On July 30, two former employees filed a federal lawsuit against the owners of Bikini Beans Coffee, Benjamin and Regina Lyles. It alleges the company illegally underpaid employees and violated state and federal labor law. Various allegations in the complaint — which include claims that employees weren’t paid minimum wages and were required to work unpaid after clocking out — align with accounts provided to New Times during interviews in recent weeks with former employees.

Oh, wah, wah, wah. You know, when I was in high school, I worked in a deli. We were paid slave wages, had to kill the cockroaches on our own time, and had nothing to look at except the crazy gorgeous blonde cashiers at the pizza shop next door.

But did I cry when I literally walked into the candy shelf because I was staring at Jenny? Well, actually I did for a while, and then I had to restock the candy shelf. So… yeah. Think about it.

Just The Tips

Employees at Jessica Biel’s restaurant claim the bombshell is very tight, and not in a good way.

Jessica Biel has been accused of withholding nearly half a million in tips from employees at her kid-friendly Los Angeles restaurant. Nine employees at Au Fudge have filed a lawsuit against Biel and her four business partners, claiming that they never received tips that the restaurant charged clients for private events.

The group of disgruntled employees describe themselves as ‘young adults new to the workforce and new to Los Angeles’ who ‘were ill-prepared to deal with the violations of their rights in the workplace.’

According to court documents, Au Fudge charged a 22 per cent gratuity to clients who held private events at the West Hollywood eatery – but employees say that money was never passed down to them. The lawsuit claims that the ‘owners blamed the “glitch” on converting the private event gratuities to a single manager,’ but they say they still didn’t get the tips even after that manager was fired.

So I guess you can say Biel is… fudging the numbers. Bawahahahah, I kill me!