Coffee shop behind 'Game of Thrones' cup blunder revealed – and it wasn’t Starbucks

There goes the internet's marketing ploy theory...

The Feast of Winterfell, from episode four of 'Game of Thrones' season eight, is where the infamous coffee cup starred. Courtesy HBO 
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Game of Thrones might be heralded as one of the best shows on television, but, as this week has proved, it is not above making mistakes.

Eagle-eyed viewers were quick to spot a rogue coffee cup that had been left on the table during a banquet scene in the fourth episode of the eighth and final series, which aired worldwide on Sunday.

Within minutes, the internet was flooded with memes, and HBO was quick to admit to the error in a tongue-in-cheek statement.

“The latte that appeared in the episode was a mistake. Daenerys had ordered a herbal tea,” the statement said.

Many were quick to jump to the conclusion that a member of the cast or crew had popped out to Starbucks, given the cup's light colour and circular logo, leading to calls that the whole stunt was just an elaborate marketing ploy.

Stacy Jones, CEO of marketing company Hollywood Branded, told CNBC that the marketing value of having Starbucks associated with the show could be worth up to $2.3 billion (Dh7.3bn) to the Seattle-founded chain, with social media analytics counting more than 193,000 mentions of Starbucks within 48 hours.

But the show's art director, Hauke Richter, has now quashed that theory, telling TMZ that the cup in question wasn't from Starbucks, but in fact a local coffee shop in Northern Ireland, where much of the show is filmed.

“We are usually so diligent that this does not happen,” he said. “The shoot was very hard and demanding and it is likely that after a very tiring ep 3 shoot, this was simply overlooked by an exhausted crew."

HBO has now digitally edited the cup out of the scene, for anyone catching up and hoping to spot the blunder.