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Grumman '78
Photograph: Grumman '78 / grumman78.com

Famed Montreal taco truck and restaurant Grumman '78 is closing its doors

It's the end of the line for their chartreuse green taco truck: The famed Montreal restaurant Grumman '78 is closing its doors after 10 years.

By JP Karwacki
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After ten years of serving the city its famous creative and fusion-style takes on Tex-Mex food, Montreal's famous chartreuse green, 1978 GMC taco truck and restaurant Grumman '78 is closing its doors permanently.

Owners Gaëlle Cerf and Hilary McGown and chef Sébastien Harrison Cloutier announced that they would be shutting down today on social media, following a previous post earlier this month that they would be closing to take a break for the month.

"It is with a big heart that we announce Grumman '78 is permanently hanging up its tires," they wrote. "2020 brought its batch of emotions and bad news, and our old truck and mythical garage won't make it unfortunately."

It's a surprising turn of events in many ways, as the team at Grumman '78 were among the first to quickly adapt to the new demands of the COVID-19 pandemic, having offered organized lineups for takeout and had started a grocery store out of their restaurant to buttress dwindling sales.

The restaurant will be sorely missed. For a decade, the restaurant has been one of the best destinations for dining out in both its nieghbourhood of Saint-Henri and the city at large. 

"We hosted your weddings, birthday parties, family dinners and funerals. We catered your at home parties, your office lunches, we were there for your lazy Sunday dinners, your date nights and your Christmas parties," they wrote in their post. "We also changed the laws in Montreal ushering in a new age of food trucks and culinary ingenuity." 

That last note's important, as Gaelle Cerf's the vice-president of the Quebec Food Truck Association, and her work there's been an inspiration for bringing street food back from the brink of extinction in Montreal. Before this announcement, she had been trying to reach Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante’s administration to discuss using food trucks in the city, but no new development came of that outreach.

Their restaurant's unique layout—a renovated garage with a huge front parking lot—has been host to many Montrealers and eager diners from out of town, and most recently unique shows like Drag Brunch MTL this past summer.

This weekend will mark their last days. On Saturday and Sunday, beginning at 10AM, the restaurant invites Montrealers to say goodbye ("respecting the sanitary measures, of course!" they note) and see what they are selling as part of their garage sale; a few items from the restaurant need good homes, they say.

The one promising note they made in their farewell? "We are going to take a well-deserved break and see where the wind takes us – possibly on another adventure?"

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