In the coffee capital of the US, a one-time Starbucks competitor that was once—and possibly still is—owned by Stormy Daniels' lawyer is closing for lack of coffee, the Seattle Times reports. "At this time we have very minimal coffee left in stores," reads a memo sent to managers at Tully's Coffee. "Retail business is temporarily suspended until coffee deliveries resume." The memo was sent by the Seattle coffee chain's project director, Krystal Tonning, and said the company is unsure how long stores will be closed. Tonning hung up when reached by the Times. Tully's was founded in 1992 and had 185 US locations in 2010 before filing for bankruptcy, according to the AP. It was purchased out of bankruptcy in 2013 by Patrick Dempsey of Grey's Anatomy and Michael Avenatti, currently making headlines as an attorney for the porn star claiming an affair with President Trump.
And here's where it gets interesting. A Tully's employee says Avenatti is still responsible for paying vendors and claims the lack of coffee is due to Tully's not paying its coffee-roasting company. But Suzy Quinn, a Tully's spokesperson, says Avenatti is no longer a Tully's owner (Dempsey left soon after the purchase and sued Avenatti) and claims that he's in charge of anything are "ridiculous and baseless." In fact, Quinn says the closures are for a planned rebranding that could take months. "We had to exhaust all existing inventory for the rebranding," she tells Time. But it's unclear why, if the store closures were planned, Tonning's memo described it as "an incredibly confusing, frustrating, and simply difficult time," or why a sign at one closed Tully's location blames "unforeseen circumstances." The Tully's employee says Avenatti not being the owner "is a very bizarre thing to hear." (Read more coffee stories.)