Former no-tipping eatery Ritual calls it quits in Vancouver's West End

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      A West End restaurant that started off with a no-tipping policy has shut down.  

      Owner and chef Nevada Cope opened the 48-seat restaurant on March 26, 2016, after extensive renovations to the space at 774 Denman Street (near Robson Street).

      The menu was inspired by American-style comfort food but incorporated international influences, and was accompanied by a diverse cocktail list.

      The casual spot attracted a following for its brunch menu, which included offerings such as roasted apple buttermilk pancakes, huevos rancheros with cornbread, shakshuka, or eggs benedict with slow-braised pork shoulder or avocado and tomato.

      Ritual

      Entrées included fried buttermilk chicken with mashed potatoes; Moroccan chick pea stew; and a turkey burger with cranberry compote, butternut squash, gravy, and russet fries.

      But what the eatery garnered much attention for was its no-tipping policy that was implemented from the outset. Although Cope instead offered a living wage to staff in lieu of tips, she told CTV News in July that she had to renounce her payment model as it had become financially unsustainable.

      Any money left on the table by diners was donated to A Loving Spoonful, a non-profit organization that provides free meals to people with HIV.

      However, some diners did not understand or were uncomfortable with the no-tipping format.

      Ritual

      On January 5, the restaurant announced on social media that its last day of operations would be on January 7. Cope and her team thanked diners for their patronage but did not state the reason for the closure.

      The Georgia Straight is awaiting a response from the restaurant to an interview request.

      The restaurant was located a block away from Yuzu Shokutei at 854 Denman Street, which opened in August 2016 (originally as Touhenboku Ramen) but closed in December 2017.

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