Customers old and young were shocked Friday to discover that their favourite pastry shop has closed.
Pâtisserie de Gascogne closed all seven stores and a production centre in the Montreal area, Thursday, after operating for decades in the city. There was a notice posted on the door that greeted clients, explaining why.
Mingye Chen who works next door saw the sign when she went by. “It said for commercial reasons after 60 years, they’ve had to close.”
It was a similar message in a letter sent to the 175 employees who have been let go. According to United Food and Commercial Workers Union of Canada representing the workers, they were not expecting this.
The union says they’re still waiting to find out from the company if there are any plans to help the workers find new jobs. They also say they’re doing whatever they can to support the workers impacted by the closure. One after another, clients at the Sherbrooke Street location showed up, expecting to find it open.
One of them, Nigel Penney, says he couldn’t believe it. “Honestly, it was new today to me. “I talked to a couple of people and they were as shocked as I was!”
Some call it an institution in Westmount and say that it was a convenient spot for many who work in the area.
“Everyone’s just confused,” says Chen. “People eat there for breakfast, for lunch, especially in Westmount, just because it’s a smaller community, so it’s kind of a loss.”
Many are sad for the employees, saying it must be especially hard news to get just after the holidays.
“They turned up for work and they saw a notice on the door saying ‘We’re closed,'” says Penney, dumbfounded. “It’s a helluva way to lose your job isn’t it?”