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Cheeks Bar and Grill: 30 years and going strong

Posted on Wednesday December 05, 2018

The savory smell of freshly grilled burger patties, the sound of laughter infused with music, and a cheerful welcome by the owner Bruno Bertone; you know you have arrived at Cheeks Bar and Grill. The small family restaurant on King Street in Bolton has been serving residents and visitors for 30 years, and they are still going strong. Bertone personally serves the delicious meals, sharing moments with old customers or greeting new faces that may become friends.

Cheeks Bar and Grill is run by brothers Bruno and Robert Bertone. We met Bruno during a busy afternoon and he shared his experiences as a long-time resident and business owner in Bolton:

Tell us about Cheeks, when did you start this business?

We will be celebrating our 30th anniversary 2019. Cheeks Bar and Grill was started by our friends and my brother and I bought it and took over in 1989, and we have been here since then. We are one of the original store owners that opened in the Royal Courtyards, when we signed the lease it wasn’t even built yet.

How many staff members do you have?

I currently have 12 part-time employees. We also partner with Humberview’s co-op program and offer students the opportunity to learn and enhance their skills. If they want to learn we are willing to teach them.

Can you share a story or a memorable moment?

Oh, there are so many I can’t think of just one! 

Tell us about Bolton, you have seen it evolve, what changes have you witnessed?

Yes, I have been here for a long time and I have seen many changes around here, many are good some not so much. This town has a lot of potential and can get stronger if new businesses open in the area. Rejuvenating the core would be great for this town.

What is the most popular item on the menu and why?

Well, there are a few items that are quite popular. We are known for our variety of burgers and wings but customers tell us they also love the pasta we make.  

What’s homemade on the menu?

Our pasta sauces are homemade and so are the burgers and soups. People can tell when food is fresh and homemade. That’s why I have such loyal customers who come here for their favorite dish. Our prices are reasonable and our quality speaks for itself.

Do you source locally?

I go to Garden Foods for meat, vegetables and other items. I have a good relationship with them and they are known for their good reputation and quality produce.

What’s your favorite dish on the menu?

I love the Penne Alla Vodka, which is a combination of sautéed pasta with fresh mushrooms, green onions, bacon, cream, tomato sauce, and vodka. I also like our Spicy Hot Texas Style burger.

Do you use any of the family recipes? 

My mother was a cook and my father used to run a restaurant so the background and love for good food is certainly there. We have a certified chef in the kitchen and everyone here is experienced which has helped us create a good name in the community. My business partner Louie Rubino also works in the kitchen overseeing all the details and processes. 

What’s great about having a business in Bolton?

I was born and raised in Toronto but I love Bolton, it’s a beautiful town. When I first opened the business, I was commuting back and forth from Toronto but in 1994 I decided to move my family here. My children were raised in Bolton and I believe that was the best decision. 

Cheeks Bar and Grill is located at 18 King St. E, Bolton. For more information visit www.cheeksbarandgrill.ca