ANN ARBOR, MI — Downtown Ann Arbor’s newest cafe has a menu item that allows customers to drink their faces.
It’s called the “selfieccino,” and the machine that makes it is up and running at BeanBerry Cafe, 305 S. Main Street in Ann Arbor.
After ordering a cappuccino, latte or anything frothy, customers can photograph themselves or upload a photo of their choice to the machine through any QR scanner application. The app can connect with the machine and print the image on the drink within 20 seconds.
BeanBerry expects to open its doors Thursday morning.
Update: The owners have postponed the cafe opening until Tuesday, Oct. 15.
Hours will be 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
Owners Wes Baiz, 26, and Issa Baiz, 34, said the selfieccino is about drawing people in to snap photos and enjoy coffee with friends. While some cafes charge extra to use the machine, the Baiz brothers are offering the service for free.
“We want people to enjoy the experience,” Issa Baiz said.
Next on the list Instagram-worthy menu items is the bubble waffle with an explosion of sweets, a popular concept in Hong Kong, Wes Baiz said.
The bubble waffle comes in chocolate or vanilla. Customers can fill it with ice cream, cheesecake or whipped cream, drizzle it with chocolate, caramel, peanut butter or strawberry and top it off with items like candy, macarons, wafers, lollipops, cupcakes, cotton candy and chocolate. The final product is wrapped into a cone.
BeanBerry offers a wide variety of organic coffee, sourced from Coffee Express Roasting in Plymouth, organic tea and bubble tea. The coffee and tea will be delivered two to three times a week to keep inventory fresh, Baiz said.
“We put an emphasis on the French press because we truly care for people to taste the notes inside of the coffee,” Baiz said. “No one is ever getting something that’s old or stale.”
The Baiz brothers, who grew up in Detroit, previously ran cafes in Toledo and Bowling Green, Ohio. They said they spend much of their time in Ann Arbor and wanted to bring the bubble waffle to the area, along with bubble tea, which residents and visitors pointed out wasn’t immediately available on Main Street.
“We saw that Ann Arbor didn’t have anything like that and it was definitely something the people of Ann Arbor, we thought, would appreciate it,” Issa Baiz said. “We always heard about Main Street being a place for professionals and adults. We didn’t see a lot of students here. Our thought was, we start here and then we give a reason for students to start coming more towards this side of town. I think there’s a lot of gems here and things they don’t usually explore.”
Despite being across from Starbucks, next to Shinola’s cafe and around the corner from several other coffee and tea shops, the owners feel they are bringing something different to the table.
“It’s all about the experience. Do they feel at home here? Is this somewhere that they can come and feel comfortable? Diversity is something big to us and being able to come here and not feel like you’re getting judged,” Baiz said.
The business also aims to use compostable and biodegradable products, and to to donate portions of proceeds.
“The product is the platform for people to come in and enjoy their time,” Baiz said. “With our initiatives for environmental health … we feel like that really separates us. It’s not about the product. It’s not about the profit. It’s about the community.”