gayleys toronto

Popular Toronto restaurant with almost no internet presence says its struggling to survive

A popular source for all-day breakfast in Toronto that's been faithfully serving the community could close in a few days, the owner warns, due to a drop in sales during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tatiana Rogova runs Gayley's Cafe on Dundas West, which has had such a loyal following for so many years that, like many old school businesses in Toronto, there seemed to be no need for a strong Internet presence or marketing.

As most of us know well by now, all of that has changed during a global pandemic that has rendered school classes, shopping, events, and eating at restaurants virtual. What's an IRL business to do?

"Food business, especially when it's small and not big, it's very difficult. So the people who work in this industry, they are enthusiasts. They don't earn much money, believe me, it's very little proceeds we live on, we just love it, so it's all about passion," says Rogova.

"I know all my neighbours in Little Portugal, I talk to them and I see how they want to survive because it's a passion. They don't want to leave that industry."

Though Gayley's closed at first, they reopened on March 18 for takeout and delivery.

According to Rogova, sales are about 1o per cent of what they once were, so if you love a lumberjack breakfast or some eggs benny, get pickup or delivery from this restaurant to support a local small business in dire need of help.

Because after all, if you've been feeling understandably blue in the midst of this pandemic, just remember: there's never been a sadness that can't be cured by breakfast food.

Lead photo by

@_sfhp_


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