Mayan Buzz Cafe brews a perfect blend


I woke up Sunday morning ravenous for a new adventure. With nothing to do until lunchtime, I decided to go on a drive and let my subconscious lead the way.

A few months ago, I was absentmindedly flipping through mail when a coupon book caught my eye. Investigating further, I located an advertisement for Mayan Buzz Cafe. According to the coupon, Mayan Buzz was a newly opened cafe in downtown Grand Rapids. I made a mental note to pay it a visit one day.

That Sunday morning, my memory of its apparent quirkiness veered my car toward its location on Grandville Ave.

Stationed on a road paved with red brick, Mayan Buzz Cafe screamed culture. An easel chalkboard outside the door featuring a hypnosis-esque pattern and the words “You are suddenly feeling veeeeerrryyy thirstya��” was enough to lure me in.

Immediately, I felt a simultaneously spiritual and cozy vibe. It was as if someone had fused Ancient Mayan culture with the millennial hipster profile. Around me, battered white brick walls contrasted the statement black chalkboard. Generations of customers who had come before scribbled their own words onto the board, giving the cafe a mind of its own. If walls could talk, this one would be yelling passion at the top of its lungs.

Nothing there fit in with the rest, so everything there had its place among each other.”

Eclectic styles shone through in the tables and chairs. A classic wooden table surrounded itself with diner-style chairs. Modern couches lined the windows and looked out into the street. Fairy lights bordered the menus, which were handwritten onto chalkboards. Wooden palettes provided a podium for pieces of art to rest on the walls. Depicted in these paintings were scenes from Mayan culture and religion.

The surroundings alone were enough to overwhelm me with its warm atmosphere, and I hadn’t even walked to the cash register yet.

Skimming the menu, I picked out a breakfast smoothie and a Mayan peppermint hot chocolate. The smoothie boasted strawberries, bananas, avocados, and pineapple orange juice in a blue mason jar. The hot chocolate was infused with cinnamon and spice that perfectly complemented the peppermint kick. A beautiful flower was carved into the foamy milk atop the drink, and it was sipped out of a dark brown mug. The smoothie reminded me of summer and sunshine, while the hot chocolate gave me flashbacks of sitting around a fire in the dead of winter.

Mayan Buzz Cafe is a world of compare and contrast, a world of black and white blending together to form a gradient of gray. Nothing there fit in with the rest, so everything there had its place among each other. I savored every aspect of it: all five of my senses lapped in the aesthetic of the cafe with joy and intrigue. I could have sat in there all day and still have been constantly discovering new quirks.

I knew, as I walked out to my car, that I would be back soon enough.