The first thing to greet you at Beezy’s Café on Washington Street in downtown Ypsilanti is the hand-painted sign over the entrance promising “Simple, honest food”. True. That. Owner and benevolent overlord Bee Roll has worked tirelessly, since opening in 2008, to create and maintain “a place with tons of personality but that runs very smoothly”. When you come in you will find a staff that is unfailingly warm and spirited, with an impressive ability to remember your name.
The offerings at Beezy’s are unpretentious and irresistible, and they kick them out fast. Roll has made consistency a point of pride here. She knows that when people roam in barely awake, seeking caffeine and carbs, you have to deliver a product that they can count on. Their breakfasts are indeed the sort of thing that, once you’ve tangled with them, you wake up craving. The warm, comforting Pepper and Egg sandwich, and the crisp and zesty breakfast burrito are personal favorites and worth getting out of bed for. Beezy’s also brews bold Intelligentsia coffee, which, when paired with rich Calder’s chocolate milk, is the best mocha for your money, anywhere.
Roll is savvy to the truth that food need not be unpronounceable to appeal to a hip and sophisticated demographic. The lunch menu is a scrumptious marriage of inspiration and simple pleasure. Their sandwiches are full of variety; each one boasting a healthy helping of veggies and savory accents. Avocado and pesto mayo play happily with kalamata olives and roasted red peppers. But where Roll’s creativity really shines is in the ever-rotating soup selection. With choices like Cajun Cabbage (a sadly underrated ingredient according to Roll), and Moroccan Bean, you’ve got the whole world in your bowl! With a vegetarian or vegan soup made fresh daily and more meaty treats like bacon and apple “hand pies” available, Beezy’s goes the distance to make sure there’s something for absolutely everyone.
With a menu that seems to overflow with these gotta-have-it-delicious options, it comes as no surprise that there are times when it seems like even the ultra-capable Beezy’s crew is stretched to the limit, Saturday mornings being notably bogus, with lines out the door to nab some of the devastatingly decadent French toast inventions Roll dreams up each week. Such scenes prompt the question: what’s next for Beezy’s? When this question was posed to Roll, her responses ignited imagination: a new branch? Beezy’s nighttime? And (most delightful of all) delivery! However tempting, those ambitions are on hold for the moment as Roll preps for her newest project: the arrival of her second child. From the mouth of Roll herself, for the moment at the least, they “are far more improvement-minded than expansion-minded”.
Their strong focus on perfecting prompt and personal service has not gone unnoticed. Beezy’s just won the Metro Times Best of 2012 award for “Best Breakfast/Brunch”, tying with the venerable Café Zola in Ann Arbor. No small feat, as Roll points out, because “they serve booze for cryin’ out loud!” Even if it isn’t boozy, it is Beezy… and we wouldn’t have it any other way.