Black-owned coffee shop perseveres amid two years of COVID-19

CHICAGO As Black History Month comes to a close, WGN takes a look at a coffee shop that has continued to persevere through nearly two years of the COVID-19 pandemic.

On Western Avenue near Polk Street sits Muse Coffee Studio, where George Davis Jr. is pouring up lavender lattes and much more.

“You come in for the coffee and you stay for the experience,” Davis Jr. said,

Davis Jr. said the seeds of his business were planted when he was an undergraduate student, aspiring to transfer his business vision into a comfortable coffee shop.

“The biggest thing was just for me, not having come from a situation where certain information was readily accessible or having somebody who has been through or who has done it before. I had access to ask questions so a lot of times you just don’t know what you don’t know,” Davis Jr. said.

Muse opened in the middle of the pandemic’s uncertainty, a time that has proven to be especially detrimental to Black-owned businesses, which saw a 41 percent decline at the start of the pandemic.

Muse shares a space with the art of gallery and is also hosting a pop-up shop for Latrina Spaulding’s Chicago Culture.

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Davis Jr. said he hopes to continue centering culture, community and kindness all-around coffee.

“The biggest thing that I wish for muse is that we can continue to grow in a way that allows for more partnerships, more collaboration, more opportunity to engage with the community both locally and beyond in a way that continues to inspire people to do great things,” Davis Jr. said.

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