Aussie cafe owners hits back after customer charged $1 to heat up muffin

Owners of the Melbourne business, Bec and Peter Murray, say the whole situation was a big misunderstanding.

The item list reads 'Heat Standard 1.00' with the total bill coming to $12.50.
The $1 muffin heating surcharge caused outrage after customer Peter Williams shared an image of it online. Source: Facebook via Daily Mail

The receipt of one man's cafe order sparked shock and outrage this week due to the $1 surcharge listed on it for heating his muffin, with the customer calling out the business, saying it left a "bitter taste in my mouth".

After hundreds shared their opinion of the apparent muffin heating surcharge online, the owners of the Melbourne cafe have now spoken out about the "snowstorm" of damning messages they've received, calling the whole situation a misunderstanding.

Bec and Peter Murray had no idea their cafe Leaf and Vine was in the spotlight until a friend contacted them to give them a heads up. Customer Peter Williams had posted an image of his receipt online, and later a video where he condemned the additional fee but explained he didn't feel like he was in a "space or position to argue" it.

"I had walked out and asked for the receipt and found out that I had been charged $1 to heat the muffin, which just left a real, bitter taste in my mouth," he complained.

Bec and Peter Murray sitting behind a table with coffee and a muffin on it (left). Peter Williams pursed his lips while speaking about the fiasco (right).
Leaf and Vine owners Bec and Peter Murray (left) blasted Peter Williams (right) for 'naming and shaming' the cafe. Source: A Current Affair/Facebook

However, the owners have pushed back against his claim and have sworn they would "never" charge customers to heat a sweet treat.

"We don't charge to heat up a muffin," Bec told A Current Affair. "We never will and we never have."

The owners explained the surcharge had been accidentally included on the bill by a new employee who was still getting the hang of their internal ordering system, which has over 2,000 options with related buttons.

"It was a human error. It was a mistake made by someone in training," Bec explained to the program.

The couple said they would have "absolutely" given Williams his $1 back if he had queried the surcharge at the time and admitted they wish he had, rather than "naming and shaming" the cafe to his 28,000 followers online.

"Maybe this just triggered something in the community of being secretly overcharged by banks, by supermarkets, by the cost of living," Peter said, speaking on the anger they have felt from others over the situation.

Remarking on the hoopla he ignited, Williams later admitted; "Now I'm going to be known as the muffin man!"

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