Humphrey Yogart sees royal boost thanks to Meghan Markle [Updated]

Left: Meghan and Harry’s interview with Oprah. Right: Humphrey Yogart owners Paula and Jim Sheftel in 2008.
Left: Meghan and Harry’s interview with Oprah. Right: Humphrey Yogart owners Paula and Jim Sheftel in 2008.
Photo: Harpo Productions/Joe Pugliese (Getty Images), Anne Cusack/Los Angeles Times (Getty Images)

Update, March 11, 2021: Following Meghan Markle’s name-drop of Humphrey Yogart on Sunday night, and Twitter’s collective joyous meltdown upon hearing the business name “Humphrey Yogart,” the Sherman Oaks, California cafe is enjoying a boost in business. This week, The Los Angeles Times caught up with Greg Rogers, publicist for the froyo shop, who confirmed that an uptick of people have been coming to Humphrey Yogart asking questions about the Duchess of Sussex, what she’s like, and what her favorite flavor is.

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The thing is, Meghan never worked at the current Humphrey Yogart location; she was employed at the now shuttered Beverly Connection mall outpost. The owners of the shop have no recollection of her—it was a quarter century ago!—and Rogers mentioned to the Times that “We couldn’t find anybody who had worked with her.” Still, it hasn’t stopped curious patrons from making the journey to Sherman Oaks.

Whereas a typical weekday morning might see about 30 customers, Rogers confirmed that Humphrey Yogart had served about 200 people on Monday morning, following the Oprah interview. The owners are currently in the process of reaching out to Meghan to say thank you for the boost in business.

I get it,” Rogers said to the Times.I see why it’s interesting to people, because ... it’s a silly name and it’s a random reference.” Hopefully the frozen yogurt is as delicious as it sounds, too.

Original post, March 8, 2021: Like many of us, Meghan Markle’s first job was in a frozen yogurt shop. Unlike most of us, however, she was employed at an institution with the fantastic, earth-shatteringly Hollywood-specific name of “Humphrey Yogart.” And unlike 99.9% of other Humphrey Yogart employees, Meghan Markle casually mentioned this fact to Oprah in a two-hour interview on CBS this weekend.

“My first job was when I was 13, at a frozen yogurt shop called Humphrey Yogart,” she said.

Granted, the fact that Meghan worked at a shop called Humphrey Yogart is not the biggest bombshell that was dropped by her or her husband during Sunday night’s interview, by any measure. The lengthy sit-down with Oprah covered such topics as depression, the tabloids’ racist coverage of the Duchess of Sussex, and the couple’s decision to step back and break away from palace life, a decision that has caused huge rifts within the Royal Family. But amid all these heavy, important revelations, the words “Humphrey Yogart” floated into the public consciousness like a balm, and Twitter was soothed by it.

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And of course, it didn’t take long for the explainers to roll in. As MarketWatch put it, “A Sherman Oaks, California yogurt shop is about to get a royal wake-up call.” Aside from a few dark months in which the shop had to switch locations in 2016, Humphrey Yogart has operated continually in Sherman Oaks (just outside Los Angeles) since 1984, owned by husband-and-wife duo Jim and Paula Sheftel. Paula had owned and operated the cafe for several years before Jim first walked in as a customer. The story of their courtship, marriage, and co-ownership of Humphrey Yogart can be found on the business’ oddly and endearingly specific About Us page. If the Sheftels are half as delightful to work for as they are to read about, then we can only assume that teenage Meghan Markle had a great experience there.

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This morning, we raise our coffee to you, Humphrey Yogart. May your phone ring off the hook with media inquiries and special orders, and may your froyo inspire the masses as much as your name.

Marnie Shure is editor in chief of The Takeout.

DISCUSSION

Locksmith-of-Love
Locksmith-of-Love

with a name like that they deserve all of the attention. :D