by Destiney Warren
When my best friend Kayla and I hang out, it’s usually because one of us has texted the other saying, “Hey, want to go get breakfast?” For her, it’s usually pancakes with a side of eggs and sausage while for me it’s french toast or a waffle with bananas and peanut butter—don’t judge me okay! We both have to have coffee with lots of Splenda.
Breakfast is just what we do. In fact I’ve called her at 7 a.m. and woke her up to go, and she still went with me. Because we go to breakfast so often, we’re always on the lookout for new breakfast spots to try. Max’s Brunch House Cafe in downtown Selma was one we had tried back in 2015 when they had first opened, and I distinctly remembered a cute little shop with a yummy waffle. Kelli Trujillo who owns the cafe with her husband talked to me about Max’s and what owning a business was like.
Kelli and her husband John already own the Trujillo Tax Service right next door. When I asked her when they had decided to open the restaurant, she said that her husband had wanted to open one for a while and that the space had opened up to rent, conveniently right next to their other business. After doing some research they found that Selma had a lack of “American-Style” food, and so they decided to rent the building to start one. According to Kelli, it took about one year to do all the renovations necessary to change the space from a flower shop to a restaurant. The amazing part (one of the many things that amazed me actually!) was that Kelli told me they did not take out any loans to renovate…her brother-in-law and other family members did it all themselves.
I asked Kelli what was the hardest part about being a business owner, and she told me, “The hardest part for me is going from a pharmacy technician to running Max’s and adjusting to a different environment.” Kelli is also the waitress for the restaurant, and one thing she appreciates is that she has learned a lot through owning/working there. “I have learned so much [about] what it takes to maintain and run Max’s. I have met so many people and built great relationships with them.”
One thing that Kelli believes that they are known for is that they have fresh food and food not being frozen or pre-done. She also says, “My staff is very friendly, and we want everyone to feel comfortable and hang out and visit .” I have to agree with her. I recently went in to eat with my brother and the waitress (not Kelli this time unfortunately) was very friendly and came back several times to check on us. I also really liked the atmosphere of the cafe. They have comfortable little groupings of tables and chairs, but my favorite part about the cafe is that they have pictures of Selma from the old times…when the town was first founded. I could have spent my whole day there looking at those!
Kelli’s advice for aspiring business owners was to just go ahead and follow their dreams: “Go for it, but it will take dedication and lots of ups and downs, take [the] good with the bad.” I also asked Kelli where she sees Max’s in the future and she said, “So far we have two years into Max’s, and I hope we last for a while! We don’t know what the future holds, but we are in this as long as we can… I’m blessed to be able to have opportunity to have Max’s and still take care of my family. it’s a juggle, but I can do it!”
Stop by and give Max’s Brunch House Cafe a try next time you’re in Selma, or even just the next time you want some chicken and waffles…I know I will. It is located at 1957 High St. in Selma, CA.