Can I say: JEALOUS
This is more of a pathetic rant than anything else, but I lived in Montreal for just under six years, and have since relocated to India. You know, the whole career thing after graduation. Well, I have a great job, and the food here is amazing (it being authentic Indian and all) but I miss Montreal food like there's no tomorrow. I just discovered this message board and it brought memories flooding back.
I used to live at Carre St-Louis (in one of those Victorian buildings - a steal for an impoverished student) and frequented Lafleur's. My roommate actually spent a full 24 hours in there on a dare (involuntary shudder).
I think that Montreal is a great city for cheap, student eats. St-Laurent and parts of downtown have no comparison. Good Lebanese at Sara, Coco Rico, Schwarz's - oh to be transported there now.
But there is also the oh so good expensive stuff. Like the Oeufs Calypso and Benedictine at Cafe Cherrier. Hollandaise Sauce heaven!!
I saved like a fiend (eating ketchup sandwiches, no less) for almost a year to eat at Toque. And it was the highlight of my life - no jokes. My one big regret is that I stopped experimenting with BYOW's after I discovered L'Academie and Jardin de Panos, and in the process only discovered Le P'tit Plateau and YoYo a month before I left the city.
And my favorite memory is stumbling back home drunk along St-Denis in the middle of winter and marvelling at L'Express' heated sidewalk so much that we just had to stop for frites and wine. The staff was incredibly courteous and mildly amused considering how boisterous we were!!
Anyhoo, I am starving having written this, and will have to go in search of some new gem in Delhi.
Look forward to your responses,
re: Pat Hammond
Hi Pat and everybody else following this thread,
Thanks for the welcome!! And yes, I will be keeping the international board posted on any finds in Delhi.
And my little post has made me more homesick than ever. It's the little things I miss, like going out for breakfast, or poutine at 4am, or walking by Nickel's and chuckling at the time I thought that Celine's restaurant was the best thing in the world.
Montreal just has so much choice! To say that Delhi is a culinarily boring city is an understatement!! There is only so much good Indian food you can eat, and all the other cuisines represented at restaurants here are mediocre. And before I get any angry responses from Delhiphiles, let me clarify that there are exceptions to the above!!
you probably do have to focus on Indian food in Delhi, but my suggestion would be to try some of the regional cuisines which I understand are more represented than previously at delhi restaurants.
compare and contrast kashmiri, parsee, mangalaorean seafood, keralan etc.
Plus, the the fruits and veggies are so much more bounteous and tasty.
Look forward to hearing your discoveries on the international board.
Echoing your subject line: I'm jealous, too. How about we trade--two bistros and a Lafleur for a single, decent Indian restauant? Please?
Several jaded foodie acquaintances of mine from NYC have at one time or another complained that, for a so-called food city, Montreal lacks big guns--no three star, Alain Ducasse-ish experiences to be found here. And they're right, except that they miss the point. Relatively speaking, Montreal is a poor city (for example, the percentage of residents who rent is one of the highest on the continent; the percentage of residents who own cars is one of the lowest; and just compare the cost of living to that of Toronto, Vancouver, San Francisco or NYC). Yet it's also a place with tremendous joie de vivre and a food culture that's not limited to an elite few but widespread, shared by much of the population (even grocery chains offer raw milk cheeses; nearly every neighbourhood has a good bakery, a decent liquor store, a credible butcher, a green grocer). Combine the two and what do you get? Lots of good restaurants at the lower end and middle, few at upper end and none at the very top. So, yeah, it *is* a great place for impecunious students and for the lumpen-bourgeois like yours truly, too.
I graduated from McGill last year and I remembered reading the adventure of your friend spending 24 hours at La Fleur on the McGill Tribune.