The founder of Andalos, Montreal's standout Lebanese bakery, pastry shop, lunch counter, and caterer, has died at the age of 66. Raymond Cheaib opened his then modest Ville Saint-Laurent pita production facility in 1991. Andalos grew rapidly and expanded in size and scope to eventually offer a wide range of traditional pizzas, sandwiches, salads, and sweets. The bakery's headquarters on Lebeau became a popular takeout spot, a de facto social club, and, indeed, a gastro-tourism destination.
"This past May 31, Andalos lost its founder: a visionary and an exceptional man. His passion and dedication will guide his successors and serve as a pillar for our bakery," wrote Andalos's management yesterday (translated). "Today, we have the immense privilege to perpetuate his legacy. We promise to maintain Mr. Raymond's standards, to preserve 'the Andalos experience,' and to receive you with a smile as warm as his." Cheaib leaves behind a wife, three children, his mother, eight brothers and sisters, and many other relatives and friends. Our thoughts are with them and the entire Andalos family at this time.