The Millstone Family Restaurant re-opened its doors this morning at 5:30 a.m. with the owners and employees greeting customers with hot coffee and happy-to-be-back smiles. After being closed for just over two weeks, the business is vibrant and full of life following a complete remodel of its interior. “We have been wanting to remodel for a long time,” said Sheri Forrette, designer of the remodel and wife of owner Dave Forrette.
The restaurant’s four owners, Dave Forrette, Lisa Forrette, Matt Allen, and Kim Peschong, closed their doors at 2 p.m. January 10, and got to work immediately. Demolition took place and was completed within a day and a half. The entire inside was gutted down to the cement blocks before being rebuilt with a fresh modern look.
The Forette brothers, Dave and Jimmy, grew up in the restaurant business and Dave graduated from South Dakota State University with a degree in hotel and restaurant management. He spent many years in the business in Brookings before purchasing the Millstone. Although he has not had any formal culinary training, “I have cooked my whole life,” he said.
Dave’s favorite meal to prepare is breakfast. He estimates that he has cracked 6-7 million eggs. “That’s actually something I have tried to keep track of,” he smiled.
Throughout the years, the Millstone has followed the trends of eating healthy. “But people are still looking for comfort food and homemade taste,” Dave stated. “Nothing beats a good burger or gravy.” The challenge of finishing the huge Valley Queen Cheese burger is still up for grabs. “Nobody has finished it yet, but some have come close.”
Jimmy and Lisa have resided in Milbank for over 20 years. Lisa had been a long-time employee of the restaurant, working there since about 1987 before purchasing the business with Dave and Sheri. “I am spending more time in the back cooking now,” she explained. “But I won’t give up the front. I enjoy seeing my regulars.” Jimmy has worked for the Pepsi Company for many years and fills in at the restaurant when needed
In 2013, Matt Allen, assistant general manager, became a partner. He had worked at the restaurant since high school. “Matt is the man behind the scenes who helps with the daily operations,” explained Dave.
Kim Peschong, a longtime employee of the Millstone, is the newest partner. “It’s real cool,” Dave said, “how Matt and Kim were working here when I took over and now they are my partners.”
Some things at the Millstone did not need to change – delicious food, excellent service and the staff’s friendly faces.