Tucked in an unassuming strip mall off route 80 in Monrovia, a town in Maryland that you would miss if you blinked, is a little cafe and bakery called The Buzz. For weeks now, everyone I knew was buzzing about it: “I hear their sandwiches are amazing,” “their pie, lord,” “really good food, like whoa!”
Then, as luck, or fate, or God would have it, a woman came into the factory store one day raving about our products and how she loved to cook with them. She told me how she only used our preserves for baking and cooking at her cafe. At the mention my ears perked up and I knew I wanted to have her do something with this blog. Low and behold, she gave me her card which read “MINDA METZ, THE BUZZ BAKERY AND CATERING.” The person who runs the place that had been occupying so much thought and conversation for the past weeks had walked into our store and declared that she used our products in many of her recipes! You could have knocked me over with a feather. Minda and I agreed McCutcheon’s and The Buzz could do some cool things together.
Minda invited me down to the Buzz soon after. I was expecting a grueling drive down single-track roads to find Monrovia. I was suprised that it really only takes about two turns once you get off I-70 and is only 15-20 minutes from Frederick. The second I walked in I knew this place was the real deal. Some “cafes”, as they would like to call themselves, are little more than a hot plate and a deep frier. Those are the places you leave with every hair folicle and fiber of clothing reeking of grease. The Buzz is not one of those places. When you walk in you are hit by a wall of aromas. The smell of freshly baked treats greats you first, then the sweet and distinct aroma of a freshly made vingarette being emsulsified finds you, until you are so wrapped up in this world of only good smells you become intoxicated. Maybe it’s the sugary treats that tempt you or the giddy and witty team who work at the Buzz, but the stress of the world lifts in this place and all you can think to do is point, smile, eat and repeat.
At the Buzz, Minda–head Chef, recipe mistro, and food-wizard-extraordinare–makes a fresh menu weekly. New soups, new salads, new sandwiches all centered around a weekly theme are served up without flinching. The week I came by the theme was coming together, a tribute to MLK day. Not only did they feature an enticing and extensive full menu, Minda had whipped up a pile of amazing food using McCutcheon’s products: Strawberry Monkey Bread, Black Raspberry Key Lime Bars, Lemon cupcakes piped full of Strawberry preserves, a Peach Melba Coconut Bar, and the “Girl Put Your Cherries On” Salad featuring a vingarette made from our Triple Crown (Strawberry, Red Raspberry, and Cherry) preserves.
I was overwhelmed. Everything tasted amazing. The Black Rapsberry Key Lime Bars are just happy tasting. ( I am sure most food critics would cringe at such a description, but thinking of it makes me smile even now.) The salad…well, I wanted to lick the plate. The vingarette they have created is simple, but has a few surprising twists. To bring out the fruit flavors in the preserves, a natural sweetener is added. In this case honey was used, but agave or maple syrup would also work just as well. As Minda emulsifed the dressing in front of me, the room filled with the sweet-tangy flavors. Minda told me she chose McCutcheon’s products becuase the flavors were just more pure than anything you could find in a grocery store. Our flavors are clean and blend well with her unique and sassy way of baking and cooking.
I recommend that you check the Buzz out and see what this week has in store. You will not be disappointed.
The Buzz is located at 11801 Fingerboard Road, Monrovia, MD, 21770. For hours, directions, and weekly menus visit their website or their facebook page. Or, call at 301-865-4900