Hog’s Breath Cafe in Woden closes tonight with reference to COVID hardships | Canberra Times

whats-on, food-and-wine, Hogs Breath Cafe

After 18 years of crumpled fries, ribs and slowly cooked beef, Stu Wiggins has decided to quit. The Hog’s Breath Cafe in Woden closes its doors for the last time after Saturday night’s dinner shopping, marking the end of a Canberra institution that has served its bespoke burgers, fries and steaks to thousands, fed both Raiders and Brumbies and supported many local charities. Along the road. Sir. Wiggins was sorry to have to take such a drastic step, but intended to bow before the financial pressure meant he could not meet obligations to his staff, suppliers and his landlord. “This was not an incentive decision; I’ve been looking hard at the books for the last six months or so, and this latest Omicron outbreak, I think you could say it’s been the drop,” said Mr. said Wiggins. “This latest outbreak, which comes after two shutdowns and the staff has to be quarantined at short notice – not their fault at all, but it’s just the way it is – and all the stress and uncertainty it brings; it just feels like the right thing to do. point in time.” Old-fashioned business values ​​sit deep in Mr. Wiggins. He decided that if the company had to close, he would do it the right way. “I’ve been burned in stores before, where people have just closed the door and left debt and bad feelings behind, but it’s not me,” he said. “I will go out with my head held high and with all my employees’ rights paid out in full.” [the staff] it deserves respect. They have been really good to me. I’ve had the same chef for 16 years. They’re like my family. “The former multiple Premiership-winning Canberra jockey who switched to hospitality as he struggled to gain weight” to ride the really good racehorses, “said the first COVID outburst and national lockdown, now a little over two years ago, was a “bit of a shock”, but the financial support was in place. “But then the other [lockdown] hit and we only went to takeaway, “he said.” All the financial support disappeared and it got really hard. After you paid the home delivery fees, there was just no money in it. “So just when we thought we were out of the woods, it turns out we weren’t.” While his life after Hogs will assume a degree of normality that people who work in hospitality rarely get to experience, he will miss the interaction with his staff and customers, many of whom have been at the restaurant since he opened. “I like people chatting with people coming in. It’s just me. I will miss that,” he said. “The cafe has been in the community for a long time; Mal [Meninga] is a good mate, we would often have [Raiders] players who come here to get a feed; I would give work to the young Raiders coming in from the country and trying to break into the team, “he said.” We used to have Hog [mascot] out at Canberra Stadium and we sponsored Raiderettes so I’ve had a lot of fun running the business over the years. “But this is the right time to go.” Our journalists work hard to deliver local, up-to-date news to the community. Here’s how you can continue to access our trusted content:


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