Ottawa Street Closure

It is with tremendous sadness that I must announce that Sunday, October 21st will be our last day of business in our Ottawa Street shop. This past weekend, we gave our notice to the building’s new landlord that we will vacate the premises at the end of the month.

Ironically, we have been gentrified out of our own business. Over the past four years, we worked very hard, overcoming countless challenges and investing tens of thousands of dollars into this building, always working towards owning it. The goal, since signing the lease, was to buy the building, run Gorilla Cheese on the main level, and live in the upstairs apartment as proud members of the Crown Point Community. To make a long story short, our investment into the building increased its value and the landlord used it to raise the price beyond our means. Despite coming to an agreement on a price and terms just in April, he announced that he wanted an additional $175,000 only three weeks later. We had to abandon our plan to purchase, and he quickly sold the building to our new landlord, an investment company who took possession in September. They quickly raised our rent payment by $250 per month, and would seek to raise it more with a new lease to start in the New Year. Needless to say, the writing is on the wall, and I don’t see things becoming any more fair for us moving forward in this location.

The big kicker is that we did not receive compensation for our numerous costly upgrades, which contributed greatly to the increased perceived value of the property. It’s my own fault; I believed in the landlord’s word and honour over the legal jargon of a contract, which I regarded naively as a mere formality. It was a grave error, and the lesson has been costly. While I will pursue compensation through legal means, it admittedly doesn’t look very good, as the contract appears to strongly favour the previous landlord.

 

Regardless, we’ll keep pressing on, taking a couple steps back to make another big step forward. We’re looking at a new location that we’re tremendously excited about. And we have a staff to look after, so our food truck will be out there making that great food out in the streets and at events. Stay tuned as we bring you news. In the meantime, we’re in our last couple of weeks on Ottawa Street, and we’d love for you to come down and say hi, say bye, and have a bite to eat. We’ll plan something grand for our final weekend. In the meantime, thanks for your support!

Really…
THANK YOU.

– Graeme

Schedule!

We’re making some changes to our food truck operations this year! Every year, the food truck scene changes a bit. And sometimes, it changes a lot!

When we first started, the idea was to tweet and post where and when we were going to appear for a service, and we’d show up, throw open our serving window and serve the masses. As time went on and more food trucks came on the scene, different uses for food trucks came about, from private functions to massive festivals to weekly gatherings. The idea of getting out and serving in the streets was quickly falling by the wayside, as demand for (and demands ON) food trucks rose to unmanageable peaks, at least in our case. Not only is the workload of maintaining the emails and requests simply too much to handle, it also seems that everybody wants something more out of the trucks. Ridiculously high vendor fees (it cost us more than $5500 to vend for one weekend, the one year we did at the CNE), unreasonable licensing costs in each municipality (to sell sandwiches at a school in Oakville would have cost us more than $800 in licensing fees for 3 hours of service), different governing agencies seeking to penalize with outrageous costs suited better to huge corporations than struggling small businesses (TSSA, MTO), event organizers seeking every opportunity to take a share in every service the truck provides (Hamilton Wentworth District School Board)… It all amounts to everybody making more money from the food trucks than they make themselves for their very hard work.

It seems to me that the plot has been lost. Chasing the money has not paid off, and it has taken the fun out of running our food truck. After my very tough year battling cancer last year, I made the promise to return to doing what we love to do – operating in the streets, and out in the community. Hence, we’re changing the way we do things. Keep an eye out for more community involvement, right here in our city of Hamilton. And watch for our upcoming Blog series to find out what really goes on behind the scenes of running Gorilla Cheese!

In the meantime, check out our current schedule of upcoming food truck services, and don’t forget to check back often! We’ll be adding services all the time, and we’ll soon be serving near you!

Tuesday, May 29 – Hamilton Bulldogs Thank You Party, City Hall, 11am-2pm

Tuesday, May 29 (AND EVERY TUESDAY THIS SUMMER!) – Holy Food Trucks, 584 Garner Rd. West, 4:30-8pm

Wednesday, May 30 (AND EVERY WEDNESDAY THIS SUMMER!) – Ancaster Business Park, 611 Tradewind Dr. (Audcomp Builkding), 11:30-2pm *With Dobro Jesti!

Wednesday, May 30 (AND EVERY WEDNESDAY EVENING THIS SUMMER!– Dinner With A View, East Side of Sam Lawrence Park (Top of Jolley Cut at on Concession at Upper Wellington), 5-8pm

PLENTY MORE TO COME! WATCH THIS SPACE!

 

Canada Day Weekend!

Nothing says Canada Day in Hamilton like Gorilla Cheese, and the truck is out all weekend at all the best spots! Whether you’re getting our famous, and oh-SO- Canadian Lumberjack Sandwich, or our amazing, house-made Poutine, come celebrate 150 years of Canada with us!

Friday June 30th – St Elizabeth Mills Canada Day Fireworks Pop-Up, 393 Rymal Rd W, 5-10pm

Saturday July 1st – Canada Day 150 Celebration & Fireworks, Bayfront Park, 12-10pm

**PLEASE NOTE OUR SHOP ON OTTAWA ST IS CLOSED FOR THE HOLIDAY JULY1!!! ALL HANDS ON DECK ON THE TRUCK, sorry for any inconvenience.

Sunday July 2nd – Tall Ships 2017, Pier 8 Park, 57 Discovery Dr, 10am-6pm

WE’RE WORKING ON IT!!

In the Meantime, check this out!! We won LOTS in the 2017 Hamilton Spectator’s Readers’ Choice Awards!! WE ARE STOKED!!

Spec Ad Complete-jpg

While you’re waiting for our new website,

Visit our new shop at 131 Ottawa Street North in Hamilton, Ontario!!

NEW SUMMER HOURS!

MONDAY – CLOSED

TUESDAY & WEDNESDAY – 11:30-7PM

THURSDAY & FRIDAY – 11:30-8PM

SATURDAY – 11:30-7PM

SUNDAY – 11:30-4PM


Would you like to book Gorilla Cheese for your event? Email us at info@gorillacheese.com!