On Thursday, January 10, The Oregonian broke a story detailing that Penthouse columnist Leah McSweeney and writer Nancy Rommelmann had created a new YouTube series called #MeNeither, which questions the motives of notable women in the #MeToo movement. Rommelmann is also the wife of Din Johnson, the owner of Portland coffee chain Ristretto Roasters. The Oregonian was made aware of the channel after 50 current and former employees of Ristretto Roasters sent the newspaper a signed letter detailing Rommelmann’s role as a person of authority in the company and the effect that her series had on employees.
While Johnson denied that his wife has any professional affiliation with the business, state records list Rommelmann as a manager of Ristretto, and her name was listed on a liquor license for Ristretto from June 21, 2013, through December 31, 2015. Past articles about the company have also listed Nancy Rommelmann as a co-owner of Ristretto Roasters.
In the days since the story was published, reactions far and wide have been posted about the videos. Local Portland publications Willamette Week and Portland Mercury both published stories about the videos and their hosts. Ristretto’s Facebook page has been flooded with reviews over the past week, with people both supporting Ristretto for Rommelmann’s videos awarding the company with five stars and, in greater numbers, sharing their disappointment in the company and leaving negative reviews. The #CoffeeToo project has also published its own response, supporting survivors of sexual assault and the employees of Ristretto Roasters, as well as calling on McSweeney and Rommelmann to dismantle their YouTube channel.