Local entrepreneurs ready the opening of new European-style café in the St. Clair Plaza

It’s not easy starting a business during a pandemic. But St. Clair entrepreneurs (and husband and wife) Mark and Kimberly Stevens have been doing just that, using the time to remodel their St. Clair Plaza storefront, patiently waiting for shipment orders to arrive as they’ve been delayed because of COVID-19.

The Stevens name might be familiar to some. Mark and Kimberly opened The Anchor Point Bistro in the St. Clair Plaza in 2019.

Now the couple is readying their latest venture, TAP Café.

Located just a few storefronts down from the Bistro, TAP Café will serve as a complement to the Bistro yet still retain its own identity. The café will feature espresso-based drinks, coffees, and teas, as well as grab-and-go breakfast and lunch items.

"We want a bit of that European feel. You look at France and Italy – we love those cafés," Mark says. "We were both in the Navy and have been to over 40 countries and want to bring some of that home."

The interior of TAP Café takes shape

TAP, an acronym for The Anchor Point, Café and the Bistro will intermingle a bit. If someone wants to bring their latte from the café to the bistro, they’re more than welcome to, Kimberly says. There will be some overlap, but expect the café to be more of a breakfast and lunch destination while the bistro remains a lunch and dinner one.

The idea for the café came from the Stevenses identifying a need in the community, they say. And while COVID may have slowed the intended opening by a few weeks, it has also given them the time to focus on designing and building the café of their dreams.

"It’s been a double-edge sword. We’ve had this vision and COVID gave us time to focus," Kimberly says.

"It’s helped us to look at everything, the in and out experiences, and choose what we want."

Follow TAP Café online for updates on their official opening date. A soft opening is expected within the next few weeks, Kimberly says.

Got a development news story to share? Email MJ Galbraith here or send him a tweet @mikegalbraith.

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