Sherry Dew wants to make one thing clear: Her daughter, Tiffany Dew, never owned Citizen Espresso Bar.
"Tiffany liked to tell everyone she owned it, but that just isn't true. My husband and I purchased it. We thought it would make a nice investment," Dew says, "and that one day Tiffany could own it when she earned the right to do so."
Recently, Tiffany called it quits at Citizen Espresso Bar and the proverbial shit hit the family fan yesterday when she made her feelings public through a strongly worded letter posted on the coffee shop's Facebook page (which seems to have been taken down). The letter stated, among other things, that the reason for her departure was that her mom, Sherry, "threatened her" and "forced her to leave her own coffee bar."
The incident happened just two months after the coffee shop on Central Avenue just south of Camelback (formerly Lola Coffee, where Tiffany was a longtime employee) was purchased by her parents, who also own and operate a 30-year-old construction business in Scottsdale.
"Tiffany has always led a privileged life," Sherry Dew, 60, says of her 33-year-old daughter. "She's always had everything given to her. From the beginning, she wanted us to be silent partners, to pay the bills and back away. We tried to let her run it for a while, but she was spending a lot of money and we wanted to show her how to run a business."
And Dew tells me that the day her daughter walked out, she not only had to close up shop for a day, but she also had to call the police.
Dew explains, after a series of troubles with Tiffany, she had a feeling her daughter might leave. So, as a back-up plan, she set up an interview with another possible barrista.
"Tiffany walked up to us and wanted to know what was going on," Dew says. "She started saying some inappropriate things and I said to her, 'Tiffany, you're embarrassing yourself. Either go back to work or leave.' So she left, and took some of the employees with her."
Without employees, Dew was forced to close up shop. Later that day, Dew says Tiffany and her friend Mitzie returned and started taking things out of the shop, so she called the police.
The Facebook post yesterday came as a complete surprise to Dew, who says she's never threatened her daughter and that the Costco comment is a lie.
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"She's always been a wonderful daughter. She's a passionate and sweet young woman," Dew tells me. "Yes we've had arguments, but they've been personal. She's always been my rock."
Dew says, although she hasn't talked to her daughter since the Facebook post, she hopes they can patch things up. And that no matter what happens, she won't bring Tiffany back into the business at Citizen Espresso Bar, which she still plans to keep running.
"I love her and I feel bad for her," Dew says. "But she's brought this on herself. We can certainly be a family again, but it will take time. "