hotmess toronto

Toronto restaurant known for its margaritas is permanently closing

A Toronto restaurant is suddenly moving to takeout-only before permanently closing their location.

"Hotmess is not gone, I am simply taking a moment to collect my thoughts and to give our city a chance to start feeling good about itself again before deciding what Hotmess does next," reads a "resignation/love letter" posted to Instagram by Tex Mex restaurant owner Chris Palik.

The letter begins by announcing he'll be resigning as "head honcho" at Hotmess as of Mar. 1. 

Hotmess was a destination in Toronto for real deal Tex-Mex, including things like hard shell tacos, margaritas and lots of queso.

It continues on to say that the building where Hotmess resides is a century old, and that they knew the space needed to be renovated even when they first moved in.

"The owners, who are wonderful people, are putting the pieces together to do the work, but it would require us finding a new home," the post reads.

"I am not going to pretend that the last two years haven't played a part in my decision making process. All of these factors combined have made me think that maybe it's time to press pause."

Hotmess will be doing Uber only during the month of February, and will be making a short documentary about the closing and what it's been like being a business owner over the past few years.

They're also planning on selling some things from the restaurant and giving out of some of their secret recipes.

"When I took a look at the road ahead over the next six months I didn't feel as if we could still do it without things slipping," Palik tells blogTO.

"As someone who takes a lot of pride in what I do I never wanted to put myself in a position where I might have to make excuses so I decided to gracefully and humbly bow out."

Local business owners chimed in to comment on the letter.

"You will be missed Chris," neighbouring burger restaurant Rudy wrote. "You've been an amazing neighbour and friend."

"Chris, Hotmess is a special place and I'm just so f*ing sad that you're closing but I totally understand at the same time," wrote Toronto coffee roaster Stereo. "I'm excited for whatever is coming next for you. I'm sure it'll be amazing."

Lead photo by

Hector Vasquez


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