One of Hamilton’s most popular ‘uptown’ eateries is closing permanently

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Published September 29, 2021 at 1:53 pm

Papa Leos has consistently been among the highest-rated breakfast and brunch spots in Hamilton and its departure will be felt by many.

With “mixed emotions,” Leo Santos announced on social media that his restaurant will be closing permanently.

Santos operated Papa Leos, the wildly popular breakfast-to-lunch eatery that played a key role in the re-emergence of Concession Street after years of construction that plagued the area businesses.

“Good day to all of our friends in #hamont I hope this finds you well,” began Santos in an Instagram post under the Papa Leos account. “It has been a long difficult road that many of us have had to travel and I am so happy to see many of our friends still pushing to keep the thriving Hospitality Scene in our city alive.”

“It is with mixed emotions that we inform you that we will be closing. This chapter has been one that will never be forgotten! To all of our customers, you helped make our jobs a tremendous joy. Every day we were able to engage in amazing ways that made all of you feel like family.”

Papa Leos, like other hospitality businesses, was forced to pivot amid the pandemic by offering delivery and pick-up options.

“To our #uptown #community in @concessionbia what can I say! It has been a pleasure working alongside all of your amazing small businesses that continue to grow and succeed,” Santos added.

(As an aside, several years ago some members of the Concession Street BIA were engaged in a minor dispute regarding the use of “uptown” instead of “the mountain” when describing areas north of the Hamilton escarpment. A dispute that we took very seriously.)

Papa Leos has consistently been among the highest-rated breakfast and brunch spots in Hamilton and its departure will be felt by many.

The restaurant was also vocal about the importance of community during the pandemic and everyone doing their part to protect those around them.

“And last but definitely not least: my family and my team! You have all been the heart and soul of my dream,” Santos concluded. “Your support and dedication to Papa Leo’s was unsurpassed. It is because of you that we had such an amazing run.”

“I wish you all the best! Continue to be kind, eat local, and never skip out on your breakfast!”

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