Gerrard and where?
Grinder on Main isn't just a coffee shop, it's our community. A slightly odd, extremely welcoming hub at Main and Gerrard in Toronto's east end. It's helmed by James and Trish, along with a solid crew of amazing people and we all love it very much, thank you. We love our customers, and they love us. We call them the MainGerr. They call us the G Spot. Most of Toronto doesn't know we're here, and we're ok with that.
If you want to know a little bit about us, well, we love our community. We live, work, go to school and play in the same postal code. We love local artists and musicians. We love food made in small batches with local ingredients whenever possible, and served to the amazing people who walk in the door of our shop. We are happiest when surrounded by our neighbours, serving food and coffee, hearing the stories of their lives. We're always happy to donate coffee and food to just about anyone who asks - supporting our community is our favourite thing.
It's a big challenge for us to toot our own horn, and to be here asking for your backing, but we really do need your support to make this kitchen happen!
What's the plan?
Grinder on Main was born out of necessity, and has been moulded by our neighbourhood into the hub it was meant to be. We currently have a small menu of simple, delicious soups, chili, stews, sandwiches and salads. It's seasonal, and although the menu has its constants, there is always something new to try! James has managed to create this tasty, diverse menu in what must be the smallest kitchen in the city of Toronto. Seriously! The kitchen 3'x3' with a slanted ceiling and he still manages to make magic in there! Magic, despite pots falling on his head!
Anyone who knows our shop knows that the back seating area as it currently exists is awkward at worst, cozy and hidden at best. If you're not familiar with our shop, the back seating space was originally designed as an office and storage room. Yet again, in 2010 necessity intervened, and we tore down walls! We're willing to do that for our community, dear reader. Tear down walls!
Our plan is to build a modest 10'x12' commercial kitchen, transforming the awkward seating area into a beautiful, functional place for James and our amazing crew to create food glory!
The redesign will require us to reconfigure the whole place, and will make room for us to include a glass-front pastry case, for display of all our many new menu options. The changes to the floor plan will increase the seating area by almost double. The wall space devoted to display of local artist's work would also be expanded to almost 500 square feet, and if we play our cards right, there will still be room for the piano! More food! More art! More music!
Extra seating and an expanded menu, you say? All that for $5000? Yes, yes indeed! The bulk of our purchases will be a new stove and ventilation, a refrigerated pastry case, materials and labour to build a new front counter (though we plan to reuse and recycle as many components as possible), and additional furniture for the new bar. It's a tight budget, but we've done more with less!
Thank you for taking the time to get to know us, and for considering making a contribution. Our life is our neighbourhood, and we want to continue to give them what they ask for!
We are sincerely grateful to: Adam Veroni for creating a video on a very tight timeline; Aaron Comeau for composing the soundtrack; Jeffrey R Smith for production help; Tessa Buchan for her documentation of life at Grinder on Main; Joan Wyatt for your true blue editing and wisdom; Lynda Felton for your Kickstarter expertise; and finally Elizaveta Yankelovich for your magic!
Risks and challenges
Our risks are simple - not being done on time. Losing sales due to extended closure. We've lived this reality while building Grinder on Main, and it's not pretty!
Paying for labour, which is included in the budget, should help us to stay on track. We have been given the incredible gift of many hours of design support, labour for building and painting by many friends and neighbours. However, this is often the more time-costly way to approach a project, as many schedules must be accommodated. By hiring one person to do the building on a tight schedule, we hope to be finished within our timeline, and back open to serve our neighbourhood!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (19 days)