Affection for his home town of St. Paul provided incentive to Vikings center Matt Birk to open Matty B’s Supper Club earlier this year. “I love St. Paul and I want to see St. Paul thrive,” Birk said.
Matty B’s is located at 353 Wabasha Street in downtown St. Paul. The restaurant was a popular hangout for years when it was Gallivan’s. The place has been given cosmetic changes, plus “elbow grease,” Birk said.
Birk has three partners who prefer to remain anonymous. “They have made me the face of the restaurant, even though I am not very good looking,” he joked.
Birk has no previous restaurant experience but was drawn to the business by the challenge. He talked about wanting something to challenge him during the months he isn’t playing football. He sees similarities to the restaurant business and football including preparation, hard work and producing a product people enjoy. “In the end it’s all about your customers,” he said. “It’s flattering when people walk through the doors to your establishment and want to spend their hard earned money. That’s an obligation on us that we have to make them leave happy.”
During the off-season Birk is at the restaurant “all the time.” This fall you will probably see him there on Monday, Tuesday and Friday nights.
What does Birk enjoy eating at his place? “I am a big fan of the meat loaf,” he answered. “I also like the pot roast and if I am really hungry I order the pork chops. They have a pork chop plate with two man sized pork chops (that) seems to fit well in my belly.”
Does he pay for his meals? “I don’t pay,” he said. “I just tip.”