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Barrel And Flow Fest Calls For Boycott Of Hofbrauhaus Pittsburgh, Alleges Racism

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- Allegations of racism are brewing on the South Side.

The organizer of the Barrel and Flow Black Beer Festival is calling for a boycott of Hofbrauhaus Pittsburgh.

On Facebook, the owners of Hofbrauhaus Pittsburgh said they are searching for more information about what happened and want people from "all levels and perspectives" to message them and share what they witnessed.

A message for our HBH Community: As the owners of Hofbräuhaus Pittsburgh, we celebrate all facets of diversity, equity...

Posted by Hofbrauhaus Pittsburgh on Wednesday, September 15, 2021

But a witness KDKA's Royce Jones spoke with said something was not right on Saturday. The witness worked security for the event and said the accusations are true.

"It was a beautiful day all the way around until that happened," the witness said.

According to Barrel and Flow Fest, people alleged having racist encounters with Hofbrauhaus, including accusations that the general manager was screaming racial slurs toward artists and not letting people of color inside to use the bathroom or purchase beer.

Still working to get to the bottom of things, but didn't want to ignore the atrocious RACISM of Hofbrauhaus Pittsburgh...

Posted by Barrel and Flow Fest on Wednesday, September 15, 2021

"I witnessed a lot of people upset. One of the first things I heard was there was a gentleman from a local business who was using racial slurs out loud, derogatory toward African American people," the witness said.

The owners of Hofbrauhaus have released a statement, saying, in part, "We celebrate all facets of diversity, equity and inclusion for our customers, staff, overall operations, our SouthSide Works neighbors and the greater Pittsburgh community."

They said the incident is under investigation.

"People have the right to be upset," the witness said, "especially if it was over the color of somebody's skin or because a Black artist was performing."

But while Hofbrauhaus touts celebrating diversity, Barrel and Flow Fest claims the restaurant declined an invitation to participate in the event and instead chose to "harass" them.

Hofbrauhaus' general manager was not available when KDKA's Royce Jones called Thursday, and an organizer for the festival never got back to KDKA.

A corporate representative said they are not connected to the events that allegedly took place and deferred all questions to the franchise.


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