What I Ate on My Montreal Vacation!
What I Ate on My Montreal Vacation!
After much researching and perusing, this is where we ended up and what we had - roughly - I didn't write things down so some things will be missing!
Saturday Pre-Dinner Drinks: Ritz Hotel bar - since we were staying there, we decided to try the bar. It's the last thing we ate/drank at the hotel. The room was hideous and while I know bartenders are supposed to be characters, but this guy was surly with a capital S! We drank and left. No nibbles except potato chips. The fun part was when another lady, who had been waiting for 10 minutes for her bill while the bartender disappeared into the back, went storming into the back / kitchen to give him hell… So we at least got some entertainment out of it!
Saturday Dinner: Restaurant Julien - This was wonderful. Casual environment, excellent wine list and suggestions. I had the foie gras appetizer and scallops for main. Husband had the tuna tartare app and the grilled halibut main. The only criticism was that the halibut was a little dry / overdone... but the scallops, by comparison, were perfectly cooked. I would highly recommend this place.
Sunday Breakfast: Eggspectations - Yuck. Crispy bacon apparently is an order request that doesn't make it through because what I got was vapid, wet meat. Husband had omelette with smoked meat which he enjoyed but found the potatoes undercooked that came with it.
We went to the Biodome for a break from eating!
Sunday Lunch: Dim Sum in Chinatown – can’t remember the name of the place! When I find the bill, I’ll add it in. I guess we’re spoiled in TO with places like Lai Toh Heen – though we have been to many places in Toronto Chinatown and never experienced ANYTHING as gross as this. The pork buns, shue mai, har gow… ghastly. Two notable exceptions were the snowpea leaf with garlic – that was really good – and the sticky rice in lotus leaf, which was also quite flavourful!
The Gallery of Fine Art beckoned this afternoon, so we stopped eating long enough to enjoy that!
Sunday Pre-Dinner Drinks: Newton – cute place – very ‘trendy’ – nice to sit and people watch on one of the busiest corners in Montreal! Excellent Cosmo!
Sunday Dinner: La Fonderie – Good choice! We were looking for fondue chinoise since it is utterly unavailable in Ontario! The Concierge pointed us to this family run place and it was a great choice! We had fondue chinoise with the thin slices of beef – with Caesar salad to start (with capers, nice touch). They had lovely dipping sauces for the fondue, one of which was curry based – it was very, very tasty.
Sunday Dessert: The bar at the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth - Bring on the nibbles! Unlike the Ritz, this place was beautiful, with elegant little booths to sit in, without feeling cut off from the room. We got a three tiered stand of nibbles with our drinks that kept us going until this gargantuan crème brulee arrived (with two spoons!)
Monday Breakfast: Chez Cora – have a smoothie if you go here: they’re great! Otherwise, unimpressive but what do you want for a breakfast chain?
Monday Lunch: 3 Brasseurs – we wanted to try their microbrew beers – and had the sampler, which gave you a small glass of each of the four brews. Very interesting. Also we had this pizza like thingy, the name of which escapes me = it’s SUPER THIN crust and absolutely perfect with beer!
We went shopping on Rue Ste-Catherine – I began to lose my mind with the crowds so husband sent me to get a mani after a highly unsuccessful attempt at dessert at the Holts café! What a guy!
Monday Dinner: Bronte. This was the best thing we did all weekend! Husband had gone in there while I was getting my mani and requested a tasting menu with wine pairing that HAD to include foie gras (since that is my favourite)! The food was sublime, the pairings were absolutely perfect and the effort made to make sure that everything was just right was unbelievable. We loved all 6 courses but don’t ask me to recite them… It was totally done blind and worth every cent and minute! This place is outstanding and I would recommend it highly!
Tuesday Breakfast: Au Pois Penchee. I felt like I was in the movie The Godfather here… I seriously looked around and wondered if “Candid Camera” had come back in style and we were on it! Very strange ambiance and even stranger cognac soaked bacon covered in cracked peppercorns… But yummy French toast, made with brioche.
That was it… Husband (an ex-Quebecois boy) had to have St-Hubert for lunch, so thank goodness for the airport lounge. Yuck.
Anyhoo, we ate and drank well and now we’re home, recovering from our vacation!!!
I bet what you had at 3 Brasseurs was an Alsatian speciality, Flammeküche (Tarte flambée), made with crême fraîche and onions - and usually lardons (though there is a historically authentic kosher version without, which vegetarians can also enjoy). Lovely either with good beer or with white wines of the Germanic type, from Alsace and elsewhere.
As for St-Hubert, hey, it is one of those local nostalgic things. Probably before it became such a big chain it was actually decent, as BBQ chicken with frites and coleslaw is not necessarily bad food. Perhaps next time you can convince him that the simple Portuguese version is even better. It is, and not a cent more expensive.