ishq toronto

Toronto restaurant deflects accusations they don't share tips with staff

Customers at a Toronto restaurant were allegedly warned by their server not to leave a tip during a recent visit, claiming that the restaurant's management have been pocketing their tips.

There's been a steady buzz around Scarborough's Ishq Veg, an all-vegetarian restaurant, since they first opened this past January.

Not all news is good news, though, it seems, as one patron reports an allegedly disappointing — if not shocking — experience.

"I went with a friend on Saturday and noticed the staff seemed extremely burnt out, and stressed," the person claims in an email sent to blogTO.

The customer then alleges that, when they and their friend were paying their bill and went to tip, the server stopped them.

"The server told us not to pay tip via card because the owner keeps it," the person claims, adding that they had found Google reviews since their visit that report similar experiences.

Indeed, a handful of Google reviews have been posted alleging similar experiences of either being warned against tipping by card or encouraged to tip in cash by employees, claiming that the restaurant managers aren't paying out tips.

ishq toronto

One Google Reviewer claims they were informed by staff of management allegedly pocketing tips.

In response to the allegations, Ishq makes a point to stress that fair payment and treatment are of great importance to the restaurant, though they do not offer the specifics of payroll or tip division.

"I want to assure you that we priotitize our team's well-being and ensure they are fairly compensated," they tell blogTO. 

"Our team members are paid promptly, and we provide additional incentives to motivate them to achieve their goals," adding that they've rewarded employees with gifts and free food, and even larger rewards including cars to long-standing staff in the past.

Ishq is run by the same team behind Shaaz Indian Cuisine, which does not appear to have been the subject of any similar accusations since their grand opening last September.

Lead photo by

Fareen Karim

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