Corleone’s Pizzeria’s 1948 Plymouth Special Deluxe. Equipped with “suicide doors”. (Facebook)

Corleone’s Pizzeria’s 1948 Plymouth Special Deluxe. Equipped with “suicide doors”. (Facebook)

Staffing shortages forces closure of Corleone’s Pizzeria in Penticton

The restaurant announced the closure on May 16

Penticton’s Corleone’s Pizzeria will be shutting its doors following the pandemic and labour shortages.

The eatery located at 625 Main Street announced its closure on Monday, May 16 will join about 13,000 other restaurants across Canada in closing down due to continuing impacts.

“With heavy hearts, we have made the difficult decision to close our doors indefinitely, due to ongoing staffing shortages/issues,” stated Don Gigliotti, the owner of Corleone’s Pizzeria and Caffè D’Italia on Facebook.

Opening just two and a half years ago right before the pandemic, the pizzeria stepped up as COVID-19 took hold, at first offering free pizza to anyone affected by the first round of layoffs in 2020. Then offering free coffee to restaurant workers affected by COVID-19 restrictions, in March 2021, following the provincial ban on all indoor dining.

Now, it appears the pizzeria is facing its own issues with restaurant workers, a staffing shortage that has prevented the business from operating.

“We wish things could be different, but the current labour conditions have deemed it impossible to give you the service and consistency you deserve,” said Gigliotti.

Canada’s restaurant industry slammed by two years of shutdowns, repeated layoffs and strict capacity limits has prompted an exodus of workers from the sector as people sought more steady incomes, switched fields or went back to school. Canada also welcomed fewer immigrants during the pandemic, newcomers that sometimes find work in the restaurant industry.

According to an article by The Canadian Press, there are plenty of job openings across the industry in both fast food and full-service restaurants, but the problem is most acute in kitchens.

That appears to be true for Corleone’s Pizzeria as a job posting for a chef was placed on Facebook on May 3.

The sister location of Corleone’s Pizzeria, Caffè d’Italia remains open at 449 Main Street.

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