Late last year, Michael Taapken and his son, Jordan Taapken, were craving some breakfast and decided to go to the Park & Main Café located just below the Metals Bank building.
When father and son arrived, the doors were securely locked. The restaurant, which had served many breakfasts, had closed. The two then headed to the Metals Sports Bar and Grill to order food.
As they left the restaurant, the men noticed a real estate agent’s sign for the Park & Main. After discussing it, discussing the pros and cons of starting their own restaurant, the pros won and two days later Michael and Jordan found themselves inside the Park & Main, checking out the possibilities.
Those possibilities became reality on March 10, when the pair opened the doors to Uptown Butte’s newest restaurant, “I Don’t Know” Café.
The name is courtesy of Michael’s partner in life, Jeanine Rashleigh.
According to Michael, it’s the perfect name for the restaurant. More often than not, he explained, “I don’t know” seems to be the answer when asked – “Where do you want to go, what do you want to do or where do you want to eat?”
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“Inevitably, ‘I don’t know’ seems to be the universal answer,” Michael said.
Since the opening a few weeks ago, father and son have been busy.
“It’s been going pretty well,” Jordan said.
Michael, who enjoys interacting with his customers, agrees. Business has been good.
“But it can always be better,” he said.
Open seven days a week, the restaurant is open from 6:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and serves breakfast all day. Lunch is available from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Their breakfast menu includes burritos, French toast, avocado sandwiches, pancakes, cookies and gravy, omelettes and eggs, whatever you like them. On the lunch menu, in addition to the soup of the day, tacos and a variety of sandwiches.
Their most popular items on the menu are soups, as well as breakfast burritos, cookies and gravy, and open avocado sandwiches.
No matter the dish, however, Michael said their main goal is to serve the best possible portions at the best price.
Both men are overwhelmed by the warm welcome they received, as well as the positive comments about the food and service.
“Our customers have been great,” the two men said simultaneously.
Originally from Indiana, Michael has a lot of experience in the restaurant industry.
The former owner of a small taco shop has worked for 15 years as a transportation manager for Sysco, a wholesale restaurant food distributor.
Jordan also knows his way around, working in the kitchens of assisted living facilities.
Today, father and son consider themselves lucky to be able to work side by side.
Michael is especially thrilled and admits he’s getting a little emotional thinking about the new father-son business.
“For me personally,” Michael said, “I wake up happy every day to be a business partner with my son.”
Jordan is happy too, but he also likes the challenge.
“Being able to do something different is great,” he said. “I want to serve our customers the best I can.”