The observant or coffee-dependent sorts returning to Maryville may have noticed the small, chalkboard sign along Main Street emblazoned with the words “Local coffee shop open.”
Those words are a beacon of a new coffee joint recently added to Maryville’s repertoire.
The Broken Mug, Maryville’s newest coffee shop, opened Jan. 2. It is centrally located at 106 S. Main St., connected to Guys and Dolls Hair Studio.
The unlikely coffee shop and hair salon duo make for a peculiar scene. When one enters the store, they are greeted by an open room split down the middle; half the room is lined with mirrors and salon chairs, while the other contains a coffee bar and scattering of tables.
Guys and Dolls and The Broken Mug are both owned by Mindy Hunzinger, who thought adding coffee would be an interesting way to mix things up.
“I needed to expand my horizons a little bit and not keep all my eggs in one basket,” Hunzinger said. “I decided to diversify my portfolio because I love coffee, a lot of my clients love coffee and I wanted to offer more to the community.”
To avoid any unwelcome hairy situations, the two businesses maintain separation and employees act strictly as either barbers or baristas.
Patron Seth Hummer expressed how pleasant the salon and coffeehouse pairing is.
“I really like the combination between coffee cafe and hair salon,” Hummer said. “It is a very warm environment and a lot of good vibes.”
In accordance with the name, the most notable feature of the décor is the bar and tables topped with a mosaic of broken mugs. It’s a unique effect almost resembling a page in a book of Eye Spy, where customers are able to gander at the variety of mugs, see the diverse patterns, and match scattered, coordinating pieces of different mugs.
It was Hunzinger’s daughter who originally inspired that decorative choice and recommended repurposing their old mugs for that purpose. Even after deciding to incorporate the broken mugs, Hunzinger said it was “a struggle” to come up with a name. It was only after an unexpected recommendation that she landed on the fitting name, The Broken Mug.
“I had a hard time with the name,” Hunzinger said. “I was just working out at Curves and my coach was like, ‘Hey, I have it- The Broken Mug.’ And I was like, ‘My goodness, that’s it.”
The creative name and unique atmosphere are not the only things that make The Broken Mug stand out. Their devotion to traditional coffee recipes and locally-sourced goods distinguishes them from average chain stores.
Lead Barista Lance Lewis further described what makes The Broken Mug’s coffee different than competitors’.
“What makes us different from other coffee options in town is that we are a local business that stays true to our community. All our coffee is locally sourced from distributors in Kansas City. We are looking at getting locally-sourced dairy products as well,” Lewis said. “What sets us apart from our competitors in other aspects is we have gone back to the original recipes from Europe, South America, and Asia so that it’s not quite so Americanized. It gives a bit more authentic flavor.”
The old-fashioned style is intended to provide a superior cup of coffee.
“We’re bringing back a higher caliber than most American companies are,” Lewis said. “It makes it better because it is classic. It brings back the classic elegance of coffee.”
There will constantly be new additions to the menu, and it will hopefully eventually feature a weekly special created by the in-house baristas.
Other future plans include an open-mic night, displaying and selling local artwork, walk-out car deliveries, walking deliveries to businesses within a two-block radius, and there’s even potential for coffee-accompanied art classes.
“We will keep our eye on the sky, and we shoot very high for this to be a very successful business to help revitalize and enliven the downtown community and bring some life back to Maryville,” Lewis said.
The Broken Mug is open 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Thursday, 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, and is closed Sunday and Monday.