Muskego Patch had the chance to talk with owner Jodine Paulsen, who was grateful for the opportunity to wish her customers well and clarify why the otherwise popular family Italian restaurant did not fare so well in Muskego.
"Really, it came down to us taking on a lot of obligations when we took over the restaurant about a year or so ago, and we just couldn't overcome that," Paulsen said.
She said that in retrospect the decision to keep the same name may have been ill-advised, as she felt previous patrons did not have a good association with the restaurant. Despite rehiring and retraining staff, Paulsen said it was hard to rebuild a reputation after that.
She was quick to thank Muskego and loyal patrons who also connected with Patch on Facebook and emails to ask why the restaurant, which was an anchor of the Muskego Centre mall on Racine Avenue and Janesville Road, was no longer in business.
"The people we had come in loved us, and were just the greatest, but we'd be really slow after 7 p.m. on weekends, and you just can't survive on that," Paulsen said.
She also discounted the idea that the location in the mall was entirely to blame. Previously Beef O'Brady's had operated for about five years, but also closed a few years ago. They still operate a restaurant in Pewaukee.
The restaurant closed Sunday May 19, and Paulsen said it was emotional for everyone. She thought should Mama Mia's, which also has restaurants in West Allis and Wales, could return sometime in the future, but said that they may operate under a different name.