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Portuguese Festival

ios94 Jun 20, 2007 01:42 PM

Sort of off topic here, but does anyone know exact dates of the Portuguese festival that takes place in the parking lot of their church on Rachel street? Does it even take place there anymore? It's been years since I've been and I keep missing it the last few years, I remember it taking place in late June or early July. They'd serve up all types of grilled meats and homemade wine. Any info would be appreciated.

  1. m
    MmeCarre Aug 12, 2013 10:14 AM

    I go to this most years, and I have to share some tips, since I was initiated by a friend of a friend who married into the community.

    I don't think anyone has mentioned the bread. They're beautiful dense, fresh bread rounds cooked on the spot, and can be used as a plate to support the meat.

    The tip is to go with a bunch of people, and get in the bread line first. One person goes to get drinks, and you sip & socialize in the line. There's a limit of 2 breads per person, so you need enough people in line to cover your needs. As a woman with an average appetite, I usually go through half or 3/4 of a loaf by myself. When you're about 15-20 mins away from getting your bread, 2 people go buy and cook the meat. Everything should then be ready at the same time :)

    1. t
      twinkie83 Aug 11, 2013 01:06 PM

      so i just got back. the only thing i have to say is bring some tupperware or a bunch of friends. lotsa food. have to say the malasada (portuguese donuts) are a nice little treat tuck away from all the food tents. a big thank to whoever that guy was to tip non-portuguese about the dessert tent

      1. j
        jococo21 Aug 9, 2013 09:52 AM

        Apparenlty the 2013 date is the 9, 10 and 11 of august

        Festas de Nossa Senhora do Monte
        LusoPresse – As festas de Nossa Senhora do Monte, em Montreal, estarão de volta este ano nos dias 9, 10 e 11 de agosto. As festividades, como sempre, terão lugar no parque e Igreja Santa Cruz. Espera-se, como em todos os anos, isto sobretudo se a temperatura ajudar, que a participação da comunidade seja numerosa, porque só assim vale a pena aos organizadores terem tanto trabalho. Além disso, são as nossas tradições e costumes que estão em jogo, neste mar adverso às nossas coisas...

        E como é hábito nestas celebrações, que têm a Madeira como ponto de referência, haverá procissão de fé, eucaristias, presididas pelo padre Luís Miguel, e muita animação cultural, com artistas locais e do exterior, sem esquecer a parte folclórica.

        7 Replies
        1. re: jococo21
          Fintastic Aug 9, 2013 03:32 PM

          Does it normally start on the Friday? One more day of Portuguese Fest is one more day of awesome.

          1. re: jococo21
            twinkie83 Aug 9, 2013 04:06 PM

            what's the exact address? can't seem to find the park or the church

            1. re: twinkie83
              Fintastic Aug 9, 2013 04:42 PM

              Its usually in the church parking lot at Rachel and St. Urbain.

              1. re: Fintastic
                twinkie83 Aug 9, 2013 06:14 PM

                thanks! i went through the link and it said sainte-croix church which i can't find at all so i was wondering

                1. re: twinkie83
                  EaterBob Aug 9, 2013 06:31 PM

                  There's a big difference between Sainte-Croix and Santa Cruz...

                  1. re: EaterBob
                    lagatta Aug 9, 2013 06:38 PM

                    Just the language. They mean exactly the same thing. Holy Cross in English. But they refer to different parishes. The exact name of this one is Mission Santa Cruz: (Portugais)
                    60 rue Rachel O, Montréal, Qc, H2W 1G3
                    Tél: 514 844 1011 Téléc: 514 844 7685

                    This is from www.missa.org, a Church site that lists all the parishes in Mtl.

                    1. re: EaterBob
                      twinkie83 Aug 9, 2013 10:36 PM

                      what can i say. that's what you get when you have to use google translate because they didn't put an address :P

            2. porker Aug 13, 2012 06:33 AM

              We were having a coupla glasses of wine last night when our bartender was getting off work.
              "I'm going to church around corner and maybe have skewer...you want come?" Mario says. A man of few words, English is his 3rd language.
              Mrs Porker and I exchange looks and say sure - we were trying to dedide what to eat anyway.
              We were not prepared for this great, Portuguese Nossa Senhora do Monte festival. Totally non-commercial and non-pretentious, its simply lotsa folks, families, and smiles all around, everyone drinking and eating.

              "I get skewer", says Mario. "I get drinks" I reply.
              They had beer, madeira wine, and plastic bottles of Portuguese red. Mario later tells me its from the SAQ, simply put into plastic liter bottles. They *used* to serve home-made, but the city (in their great wisdom) put a stop to that.

              One whole side of the lot is dedicated to food&drink. When Mario said "skewer", I assumed some kind of pre-cooked, souvlaki sized stick of meat. Grabbing the drinks, I see him leaving the skewer tent, a gleam in his eye, carrying a 3 foot skewer (about a pound of beef cubes) of raw meat to another area. We catch up to him and find a grilling station - two tubs of glowing charcoal surrounded by 20 or so men grilling their own skewers!

              I want in on this, so leave our little party to get my own skewer. While in line, I see great looking bifana sandwiches and buy a plate of lupini beans. The skewer is $9 plus a $5 deposit.
              Back at the grill, Mario is turning the skewer. Its his turn to leave for a few mintues "Keep eye on skewer, anyone touch, cut off hands" he laughs.

              Each table has a rack above it. You up-end the skewer and hang it on the rack, either pulling all meat off onto the plastic plate or individually, pulling off each piece with bread.

              Mario thinks its only a matter of time before the city bans the charcoal. "Too much pollution, they say", rolling his eyes.

              Great little festival. It was fun to have Mario as a guide and show us around. We ended the night at a Portuguese cafe on Duluth "Come, we have coffee with brandy now."

              7 Replies
              1. re: porker
                Fintastic Aug 13, 2012 08:45 AM

                This is a great description of the so-called "Portuguese Fest", although you forgot to mention the hamster roulette!
                We've done this party for half a decade, and it's always one of the best days of the year. Its been sad to see all the changes (especially the switch to SAQ boxed wine, which dramatically increased the prices), and to hear of the potential changes to come. This is an event that is basically identical year in and year out and only serves to support the church. Making it more difficult to organize will only be of detriment to the community as a whole. I'm clearly not Portuguese and (thanks to the cheap wine) have not always been on my best behaviour, but I've never been made to feel unwelcome.

                1. re: Fintastic
                  porker Aug 13, 2012 08:53 AM

                  Its on our permanent to-do list.

                  I did not see the hamster roulette (read about it only this morning up-thread) but will look for it next time.

                  I'm not Portuguese either, but the vibe is friendly all the way - seems everyone *wants* you to have a good time.

                  Finally figured out the i-phone picture thing...

                  One shot of the grilling station and another of the table top skewer rack (and plastic bottles of vinho).

                  1. re: porker
                    manuela Aug 18, 2012 10:58 PM

                    This sounds YUMMY!, do you happen to know when the next one is please?

                    1. re: manuela
                      Fintastic Aug 19, 2012 05:55 AM

                      It is always the same weekend each year, though I don't know how this is official defined. Typically this seems to be the second weekend in August, so I'd guess the next one will be Aug. 10-11 2013.

                      1. re: Fintastic
                        Shattered Aug 19, 2012 11:44 PM

                        Always the weekend of or before the Catholic holiday on Aug 15th (same way to know when it's Italian week, which I sadly missed this year. But tam tams was incredible today & I hit TA, mmm).

                2. re: porker
                  Shattered Aug 18, 2012 04:05 AM

                  The Portuguese feast weekend is one of the highlights of my summer. If the city did away with the grilling stations, they'd be hell to pay.

                  1. re: Shattered
                    lagatta Aug 26, 2012 08:48 AM

                    Shattered, I live in Little Italy, and found Italian Week very disappointing from a foodie perspective. I'll try to follow upcoming events at the newly-renovated Casa d'Italia - I seem to recall a homemade wine competition - but alas their website is not up yet.

                3. l
                  lagatta Aug 2, 2010 10:03 AM

                  I've read that the 2010 edition of the Nossa Senhora do Monte festival - the one with all the food and wine (they also serve beer and soft drinks) is this upcoming weekend 6-7-8 August, but we should try to confirm.

                  Once again, info on the festival in Laval would also be welcome.

                  A guidebook I borrowed at the library, "Guide du Montréal multiple" also adds the potentially helpful advice that at L'Association portugaise de Montréal, just across the street from Mission Santa Cruz Church there is also a $10 supper every Friday evening, cooked and served by the ladies of the association.

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: lagatta
                    Ghostquatre Aug 2, 2010 06:41 PM

                    huh really? I've passed that place many times and on the banner, it says that they are also a cafe, internet place and restaurant. Except the banner was on top of a closed metal doors with no windows, and I never felt like enterting

                    1. re: Ghostquatre
                      lagatta Aug 3, 2010 05:53 AM

                      I phoned the association, and nobody answered the phone. Eventualy there was a blank answering machine - just the beep, no message in Portuguese, French or English. The building is rather bunkerish - interestingly, it is a former synagogue (with those high steps typical of synagogues of the era, and Torah-slab shaped doors). In itself this attests to the immigration history of the neighbourhood, and thus the culinary history, which is what interests us on this site. http://www.imtl.org/edifices/Associat...

                      I'll try to find out more about both the festival and the association suppers. We have a wealth of such venues in Montréal and the area. Obviously the food quality varies.

                    2. re: lagatta
                      stak Aug 3, 2010 07:35 AM

                      I can report that part of the BBQ apparatus and the structure where they bake the loaves of bread have been set up for over a week. I thought it was going to be this past weekend but it must be the upcoming one, as you said.

                      1. re: stak
                        Daiya Aug 7, 2010 01:10 PM

                        Stopped by the church parking lot last night for bifana pork sandwiches and cheap sharp wine. The best was "grill-yourself" giant meat sticks (beef brochettes). The music and vibe was also fun.

                        1. re: Daiya
                          lagatta Aug 7, 2010 01:41 PM

                          Had a bifana and a glass of homemade red this afternoon. Continues tomorrow. I also managed to speak with people at the Association portugaise accross the street, on St-Urbain. They are renovating the kitchen now but will be starting up the weekend suppers soon. I'll report back when I have further info.

                    3. m
                      Moosemeat Aug 5, 2008 05:18 PM

                      Reviving an old post here. Does anyone know the dates for this year?

                      8 Replies
                      1. re: Moosemeat
                        stak Aug 5, 2008 06:37 PM

                        I walked by today and saw decorations up and what looked like the big BBQ pit in the parking lot...there was nothing there last weekend so it must be coming up. Yum!

                        1. re: stak
                          ios94 Aug 6, 2008 12:18 PM

                          I'm guessing it will be next weekend, since Assumption Day is Aug15 (I'm guessing that is what the festival is for). Since the 15th fell on a Wed last year it looks like they did it the week before. This year the 15th is on a friday hence next week would make more sense. But someone should 100% confirm this,

                          1. re: ios94
                            stak Aug 6, 2008 04:47 PM

                            Well, I can confirm that the tents and decorations are up and so is the heat shield thing that goes behind the BBQ.

                            1. re: stak
                              ios94 Aug 12, 2008 09:46 AM

                              Does anyone know if this happened this past weekend. I didn't have anytime to make it downtown.

                              1. re: ios94
                                quitesimplysmj Aug 12, 2008 10:43 AM

                                I'm afraid it did happen over this past weekend. My heart & liver have yet still to forgive me.

                                1. re: ios94
                                  plumeria Aug 12, 2008 12:27 PM

                                  Passed by last weekend, saw the tents, smelled the smoke and looked at the enormous beef skewers...

                                  My husband and I really wanted to try it, as we had read this thread, but we couldn't help feeling that this was a religious, somewhat private event (more than a festival). There were absolutely no posts, signs, or invitation, and the small crowd seemed 100% Portuguese. Not that we had a problem with it, au contraire, we would have loved to partake in this gourmet celebration, but we didn't want to be intrusive. We just didn't know how welcome we were to this event...

                                  1. re: plumeria
                                    iWoo Aug 9, 2009 02:43 PM

                                    Just so you chowhounders know... it's on -right now- (Aug 9th). The Our Lady of Monte Feast, and they have the huge skewers of meat to be bbq'd, cheap beer, and $3 bifanas (pork cutlet with chili sauce on a bun... simple and tasty!) I didn't brave the lineup for the bbq skewers, but I also would have needed a friend or two to even finish it. The smell was fantastic and smoky. There is music and dancing going on as well.

                                    The crowd did seem 99% portuguese, but I couldn't resist walking in and and buying a sandwich.

                                    1. re: iWoo
                                      Shattered Aug 10, 2009 08:19 AM

                                      I heard about this on the street last night around 10, rushed up & gobbled down a couple bifanas and washed down with a brew. Awesome.

                                      Juicier, tastier sauce (obviously homemade, not tasting like bottled piri), twice as much meat, and cheaper than the stuff on the Main Madness. (Skewers were long gone, though. I gotta remember this in the day next year.)

                        2. carswell Aug 11, 2007 12:04 PM

                          A bit of advice from the ...an endless banquet folks:
                          "Technically, the celebration lasts through Sunday evening, but the popularity of this particular festa is such that it's not uncommon for them to run out of beef early on Sunday. Our recommendation: get there as soon as you can."

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: carswell
                            lagatta Aug 11, 2007 12:15 PM

                            Good to know - I cycled by there early this afternoon and there was already a nice little crowd - the skewers of marinated meat (beef, I think) are HUGE. Easily enough for two people, but I saw a lot of people who looked as if they would consume the whole thing. Also bifana sandwiches $3,50 for a generous-looking serving, and some kind of traditional flat bread or hearth cake.

                            As for the wine, they were serving good-sized plastic glasses (not the beer goblet, the next size down) for $2, as well as beer, juice ans soft drinks of course.

                            I didn't partake in anything as I was down there looking for fresh Portuguese goat's cheese in brine - from the Toronto-based "Portuguese Cheese Co.", and found it at Segalls for $4.99.

                            Already a few people dancing as well, and a guy singing - good singer, just looked like a neighbourhood, middle-aged guy.

                          2. m
                            Moosemeat Aug 10, 2007 09:07 PM

                            Was just there tonight.
                            Highlights include:
                            -Grill your own Meat station ($7.50 for a gaint skewer)
                            - Good Portugese wine sold in 1L plastic bottles for $12.50 (The reason I am writing in point form and not full sentences)

                            P.S. Wine lovers need not be put off by the plastic bottle as they are filled on site from wooden barrels.

                            P.P.S. The only place in the city where you can gamble on the actions of a hamster (If you go you'll figure it out.)

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Moosemeat
                              shawnfcm Aug 10, 2007 11:00 PM

                              Ya I was also there tonight and don't forget that the feast continues on saturday and sunday at 2:30 is the percession

                            2. s
                              shawnfcm Aug 9, 2007 10:06 PM

                              Hey I have all the dates of the feasts at that church...

                              May 19 - 20 -21: Holy Christ of Miracles Feast
                              May 26 - 27: Holy Spirit Feast
                              June 24: Saint John the Baptist Feast
                              August 10 - 11 - 12: Our Lady of Monte Feast
                              September 1 - 2: Sacred Heart of Jesus Feast

                              Have Fun! :D

                              10 Replies
                              1. re: shawnfcm
                                lagatta Aug 10, 2007 02:24 AM

                                Our Lady of Monte sounds like a local festival for a patron saint (like ND della Difesa here), so that is probably the foodie one.

                                1. re: shawnfcm
                                  Gary Soup Aug 10, 2007 07:17 AM

                                  It seems that the Portuguese have even more festivals in the summer than Montrealers. If you are a Portuguese in Montreal, you'd better be a party animal!

                                  1. re: Gary Soup
                                    shawnfcm Aug 10, 2007 10:22 AM

                                    ya we do have a lot of feasts and yes more than montrealers. I am portuguese and i go to every one of them here in montreal... Each feast is for a Portuguese Saint... but we also have some in Laval as well.

                                    1. re: shawnfcm
                                      morebubbles Aug 10, 2007 11:01 AM

                                      So, there's food sold at these feasts? (I haven't been to any so far) Let's say, if I go on 1 and/or 2 Sept., can I just buy some lovely Portuguese goodies & eat them there? What kinds of food- meats, pastries, etc? Thanks!

                                      1. re: morebubbles
                                        Gary Soup Aug 10, 2007 11:59 AM

                                        Food, drink, music and dancing in the street, judging from the one I stumbled across in Providence RI around the first of June one year. The food was heartier stuff than pastries, but I don't know what goes on at other feast days and in other cities.

                                        1. re: Gary Soup
                                          morebubbles Aug 10, 2007 12:17 PM

                                          Thanks Gary Soup! guess just go & find out! I'll be in the area tomorrow at a tiny Portuguese cafe that serves lunch, can easily arrange to be there 1-2Sept. Cheers! May I ask if you're in town?

                                          1. re: morebubbles
                                            Gary Soup Aug 10, 2007 12:50 PM

                                            Not in town, sorry. It'll be February at the earliest before I visit my beloved Montreal again.

                                            1. re: Gary Soup
                                              morebubbles Aug 10, 2007 01:15 PM

                                              :) how nicely put! I hope you organize something, I'll definitely attend this time around!

                                      2. re: shawnfcm
                                        lagatta Aug 10, 2007 01:34 PM

                                        Oh yum. Grilled sardines, I bet? And perhaps chicken, or sausages?

                                    2. re: shawnfcm
                                      lagatta Aug 6, 2008 06:52 AM

                                      shawnfcm, if you are still around, could you tell us the main (food-related) festivals at the Portuguese Church (or community centre) in Laval?

                                      Other than foodies living there (I'm thinking of friends, who could certainly eat one of those kebabs each) with the new métro line Laval is far more accessible than before, and just a good work-the-food-and-wine-off cycle ride from JTM area or anywhere else in northerly Montréal.

                                    3. carswell Jun 20, 2007 02:07 PM

                                      The woman answering the phone at Mission Santa Cruz says it's the weekend of August 10, 11 and 12. You might want to confirm that before making plans however.

                                      4 Replies
                                      1. re: carswell
                                        rillettes Jun 22, 2007 09:56 AM

                                        Strange, I thought they had a festival every weekend.

                                        1. re: rillettes
                                          carswell Jun 22, 2007 10:02 AM

                                          The August event she called the "Festival de notre dame de la montagne" and before replying to my query she inquired "you mean with the one with the Portuguese food and wine?" That's all I know.

                                          1. re: carswell
                                            jellybelly25 Aug 6, 2007 09:04 AM

                                            Does anyone have anymore info on this festival, which according to this thread, is happening this weekend?

                                            1. re: jellybelly25
                                              lagatta Aug 6, 2007 09:11 AM

                                              I cycled past there yesterday (Sunday 5 August) and saw people decorating the parking lot- square in front of the church - slowed down to see if there was any foodie activity going on and there wasn't so perhaps they were preparing for this coming weekend. It is at the corner of St-Urbain and Rachel. The name of the church is Mission Santa Cruz, 60, rue Rachel O. Montréal, Qc, H2W 1G3
                                              Tél: 514 844 1011 The church doesn't seem to have an e-mail or website yet (many parishes do).

                                      2. kpzoo Jun 20, 2007 01:48 PM

                                        Couldn't find the answer quickly, but it sounds fab! Here are their coordinates in case you want to inquire directly - they don't seem to have a Web site that I can find:

                                        Associação Portuguesa do Canadá
                                        4170 St-Urbain
                                        Montreal, Quebec H2W 1V3
                                        Tel: 514.844.2269
                                        Email: apc50anos@hotmail.com

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