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A culinary tour of Montreal - suggestions for anything food/drink-related

We'll be driving up from Vermont and are planning a culinary tour. We are both in the food and wine industry and have some suggestions, but we are looking for ALL suggestions, especially non-restaurant. Farms, dairies, cheese makers, cocktails, breweries, wineries, gourmet shops, cookbook shops, coffee roasters, chocolatiers, unique kitchen supply stores...anything!

Our standard suggestions are the same as what we've seen online: Joe Beef, Liverpool House, Lawrence, Maison Publique, Le Filet, Au Pied de Cochon, Barroco, Pullman, and a couple others that I'm not remembering.

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  1. Sounds fun! To get you started:

    Cookbook store: http://www.appetitebooks.ca/ (Westmount)

    Jean-Talon Market: among all the fromageries and everything else, be sure to hit up Le Marché des Saveurs for QC-made products: http://www.lemarchedessaveurs.com/

    Ares kitchen supply: http://www.arescuisine.com/

    Marché Hawaii - massive pan-Asian grocery: http://marchehawai.com/

    Adonis - massive pan-Middle Eastern grocery: http://groupeadonis.ca/

    Akhavan - unique Persian (and lots of other) grocery and restaurant: http://www.akhavanfood.com/

    Gourmet Laurier: http://www.gourmetlaurier.ca/

    Amal Bohsali: best Lebanese-style baklava: https://plus.google.com/1113476026222...

    4 Replies
    1. re: kpzoo

      I don't understand why you would want to send someone to Ares? Is there something less unique than Ares? I would suggest Les Touilleurs and Quincaillerie Dante. For books, there's Librairie Gourmande at Jean-Talon market also, but of course most books will be in french.

      1. re: Glaff

        "I don't understand why you would want to send someone to Ares? Is there something less unique than Ares?"

        If you're coming from Vermont, perhaps a giant-has-everything kitchenware store like Ares is unique. The OP can take a look at their website and judge for themselves whether it's worth a trip.

        1. re: kpzoo

          If it's relevant: I'm not from Vermont, that's just where we are driving in from. I'm from Los Angeles and currently live in San Francisco half the time and Manhattan the other half.

          1. re: lobsterkiller

            Thanks for clarifying. Then unless you're looking for some specialized kitchen gadget/equipment, you might want to skip Ares. ;-)

    2. By the way, I saw in your other thread that you were thinking of going sugaring-off in New Hampshire. If you're coming to Quebec anyway, why not do that here? It's something we're known for (we supply the vast majority of the world's maple syrup) and you'll get to taste lots of traditional Quebec foods to boot. ;-)

      1. Abu Elias, 733 Côte Vertu - Middle Eastern Butcher
        Arhoma, 15 Place Simon-Valois - French bakery
        Atlantic, 5060 Cote-des-Neiges - German Butcher
        Baie des Fromages, 1715 Jean-Talon E.- Italian Cheese
        Berchicci, 6205 Couture - Italian Imports
        Cornetteria, 6528 Saint Laurent - Italian Bakery
        Ella's Deli, 4968B Queen-Mary - Russian Grocery
        Doyon Cuisine, 8505 Lepage Brossard - Massive Kitchen Supply
        Fous de la Gaspésie 1253 Beaubien E. - Eastern Quebec
        Fromentier, 1375 Laurier E - French Bakery
        Boutique Gaspor 215 Maisonneuve, Saint-Jérôme - Pig Store
        Guillaume , 5132 St Laurent - French Bakery
        Hap Hing Shing, 1021A Saint-Laurent - Oriental Fish Store
        Hof Kelsten, 4524 Saint-Laurent - Anglo Quebec Bakery
        Les Iles en Ville, 5335 Wellington - Far Eastern Quebec
        Jang To, 2109 Saint Catherine O - Japanese Grocery
        Jang-Teu, 2116 Decarie - Japanese Grocery
        Le Latina, 185 Saint-Viateur O - High End Grocer
        Boucherie Lawrence, 5237 St Laurent - Quebecois Butcher
        Mamie Clafoutis, 3660 St-Denis - French Bakery
        La Maison du Roti, 1969 Mont-Royal E - French Butcher
        Marchand du Bourg, 1661 Beaubien E - French Butcher
        Tortilleria Maya, 234 Jean Talon E - Tortillas
        Mayrand, 5650 Metropolitan - Wholesaler
        Biscuiterie Oscar, 3755 Ontario E. - Cookies
        Dépanneur Peluso, 2500 Rachel E - Beer
        Patisserie Rhubarbe, 5091 de lanaudiere - French Bakery
        Slovenia, 6424 Clark - Eastern European Butcher
        Trip de Bouffe, 277 Mont Royal E - Lebanese Bakery
        La Vieille Europe, 3855 Saint Laurent - Stuff from all over the place. Unclassifiable.

        The Wineries can all be found here (there are none in Montreal)

        The Cheese Makers Here (there are none in Montreal

        A combined food route in between Vermont and Montreal

        A different combined food route, north of Montreal

        Benelux 245 Sherbrooke O
        Dieu du Ciel! 29 Laurier O
        L'Ile Noire. 1649 St Denis
        Le Reservoir 9 Duluth E
        Vices et Versa 6631 St Laurent
        Brutopia 1219 Crescent
        Cheval Blanc 809 Ontario E.
        Helm 273 Bernard O
        La Succursale 3188 Masson

        The Emerald 5295 du Parc
        Flyjin 417 St Pierre
        Sparrow 5322 St Laurent

        2 Replies
        1. re: EaterBob

          I would add to your list of bakery/pastry shop:
          - Fous Desserts, 809 Avenue Laurier E - French pastry shop, chocolaterie.
          - Maison Christian Faure, 355 Place Royale - French pastry shop
          - Le pain dans les voiles, 357 Rue De Castelnau E - French bakery
          - Joe la croûte, 7024 Casgrain - French bakery
          - Kouign-Amann, 322 Mont-Royal E - French bakery
          - Chocobel, 374 de Castelnau E - Chocolaterie
          - Chocolats de Chloé, 546 Avenue Duluth E - Chocolaterie
          - Genevieve Grandbois, 162 rue Saint-Viateur W - Chocolaterie
          - Christophe Morel, 1333, rue Université - Chocolaterie

          1. re: Glaff

            You're right, it's the boyfriend who goes gaga for boulangeries and patisseries. My list definitely needs updating.

        2. One important question: when are you coming? It can make a difference.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Fintastic

            I agree with Fintastic and would add: how many days will you spend here?

          2. Hit the delis & butchers on St-Laurent, mostly above Roy street on the right hand (east) side.

            EaterBob already mentioned La Vieille Europe, 3855 Saint Laurent (although that place is more broad than just a deli/butcher, having cheese, coffee etc as well).
            Charcuterie Hongroise and Fairmount (also Hungarian) are the next few doors down. I suggest the spicy ready-to-eat dried sausage at Hongroise and the ready-to-eat smoked bacon with paprika coating the outside at Fairmount.
            Slovenia deli also has a branch a bit further down the street at 3653 St-Laurent.

            Further up from Vieille Europe is Schwartz. This is Montreal's smoked meat mecca, and smoked meat is one of Montreal's signature foods. A must.

            Schwartz, 3895 St-Laurent.

            Poutine is classic Quebec food. Fries topped by cheddar cheese curds and gravy. Best late-night/hangover food in the world, bar none. Go to:
            La Banquise, 994 Rachel Est.

            They're open 24 hours and have dozens of varieties, but go for the classic of just gravy and cheese curds if you've never had it before. Be ready to wait a bit, probably 10-15 min to get seated (assuming a group of 4-6) if you go after the bars close.

            Across the street and small block to the west of Banquise is Ma Poulle Mouillee, 969 Rachel E. http://www.mapoulemouillee.com/
            Portuguese charcoal-grilled chicken, which is also famous around these parts. This place is less than year old but quickly established itself as one of the best in the city - and they have a "Portuguese poutine" (spicy piri sauce in the gravy mixed with grilled chicken and chorizo, with the usual cheese on fries) if you wanna try something really unique to Montreal. Holy mack, their poutine is amazing.

            Btw Banquise & Ma Poulle Mouillee are right beside Parc Lafontaine, the nicest park in the city, with a large outdoor pond skating rink if you're so inclined (you can rent skates for $6). And you'll need to walk or skate off the poutine unless it's an after-drinks stop.

            Have fun.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Shattered

              You made a great list but I have to say I would not suggest Banquise at my go to poutine place. Sorry for the rant, it is not directed at you personally, I just dont like the big hype with that place. I love their different types of gravy a lot and they make perfect fries but the last time I went they had cheese that was not the freshest. I'm not saying it had gone bad, but any expert knows that cheese curds only a couple days old is not as good and I consider it to be the number one factor that makes a good poutine.

              1. re: whiteben

                I agree it's not the best, and it's also become way overpriced. But it's still better than average. It's close to the chicken place if they wanna kill two birds with one stone, it's easy to find, and its open all the time.

            2. Jean-Talon market is a good place to start and I'd probably head to Arthur Quentin for chic French kitchen supplies. Not sure how interesting or easy it is to visit but there is a rooftop farm here, http://montreal.lufa.com/en/about-the.... Just signed up for weekly baskets from their hothouse and the whole concept is intriguing.

              1. I'm with Eaterbob: I would head to Vices & Versa: http://www.vicesetversa.com/fr/alcools to taste local beers and ciders. It's in perfect area to also check out all Montreal's Little Italy has to offer. It's also around the corner from La Bottega, which chowhounders on this site have debated the merits of frequently (and which I like). Worth checking out if only for the pizza oven imported from Naples made of Vesuvian rock: http://www.bottega.ca
                I agree with others to check out Quincaillerie Dante kitchen store, which has a hunting section! Le Coteau http://lecouteau.ca is quite lovely if you are around Mont-Royal and Saint-Denis area

                1 Reply
                1. re: deborahm

                  If the OP decides on Quincaillerie Dante (it translates to Dante Hardware, but don't let the name fool you, it ain't no Ace Hardware. It has peculiar, not readily-found housewares, kitchen doodads and googaws, plus a gun salon, which is certainly uncommon in a Canadian urban setting...) I'd suggest to plan ahead and snag a reservation at Impasto across the street.
                  Especially a seat at the end of the bar which fronts the kitchen. Impasto was one of my best Montreal meals of 2013.

                  Broadly speaking, you might want to sample ice wines and/or ice cider. There some Quebec producers doing world renown stuff.

                  Depending what time of year you visit, the various routes suggested by EaterBob can be interesting day trips outta Montreal (Route des Vins, etc).

                  I'm not sure how you're entering Canada, but from New Hampshire, the obvious choices are along Interstate 91 to Magog then the 10 to Montreal or the 89 to Burlington then on to Montreal.
                  If you take the second option, I'd suggest taking Route 2 through the Champlain Islands. More interesting than the highway, quaint Lake Champlain towns, and depending what time of year, antiquing.
                  Once up by Rouses Point, perhaps access NY 276 to the border and cross to Quebec 221 to the 217 to Montreal.
                  This course is also somewhat more interesting than the highway and overlaps some of EaterBobs suggested routes.

                  A small detour from the 221 is Fritz Kaiser, a very good artisinal cheese maker in the country south of Noyan and Clarenceville (google map 'em).

                2. You know what also may be fun?
                  Le boucanier fish smokehouse on Marquette in the Plateau. They have their own smokehouse in-house and are super passionate. It's possible that, coming from the States, you may get your fill of Arctic Char which is one of our more sustainable fish and good for you to boot!

                  Also, Ilios Café on Saint-Dénis street sells incredible olive oil from a family grove in Greece and it makes for interesting conversation! Their café is very close to Arthur Quentin kitchen and home store which Plateaumaman recommended below and in an area where you are bound to wander. Also close by is Simplement D'Liche cupcakes which makes one of Montreal's best Cronuts.

                  1. I recommend the Atwater Market (there's some great fromageries and also a store that has different types of olive oils.) Many people will suggest Jean Talon, which is great, but I find it crowded and hard to find parking around there. But whatever you find at Atwater Market, you can find at Jean-Talon.

                    Another recommendation: Patisserie Kouign Amann - named for a Breton Pastry that they make that is AMAZING. I've never seen or had anything like it anywhere else.

                    You might want to try Aux Vivres, which is an all vegan restaurant (with a store where they sell some products.) Food is delicious, and lots of non-vegans go there (I'm not vegan) just because the food, dips, etc are so good.

                    Ruby Burma- if you've never had Burmese food, you should try this place.

                    Le Vin Papillon- they have a large selection of Old World Wines.

                    Coffee: Brulerie St. Denis, or the coffee place in Atwater Market.

                    1. At Jean-Talon Market in the back is a little gem called Boucherie An-Nasr.


                      I suggest the kefta or lamb sandwich all dressed with hot sauce, and try the soup of the day [the lentil is great].