April 2011 Archives

Laure-Lise Mélin
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Image source: Flickr

If literature and other types of art are the main points which define a country's or a region's culture, its food and cooking must not be left behind. Thus, without evoking a pretty famous cliché, I'm French and I have always been a food fanatic. As a result, as soon as I moved from Paris to Montreal, I discovered a sharp interest for the local gastronomy. After trying many of the province's specialties, I've decided to focus on Québec's cuisine and in particular on its French heritage in the way of cooking and the approach of food, firstly, examining the multiple origins of Québec's cuisine, secondly, analyzing the huge role France has in Québec's food culture, and thirdly,  revealing the chronological evolution of this province's gastronomy starting with the adaptation to local weather and ingredients and the recent rebirth of food patriotism, which has resulted in a fine internationally-recognized cuisine.

The gastronomy of Québec today is a singular melting pot of English, Native Indian and French roots, which has been going through a successful revival that started about twenty years ago.

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Nancy Leblanc


Screen shot 2021-04-24 at 9.07.30 PM.pngIf I tell you the name Martin Picard, does it ring a bell? What if I say that his foie gras' poutine's unique flavor makes people travel just for a bite? Well, if you still don't know Martin Picard, I will introduce you to a great chef with authenticity and passion. Chef Picard is an excellent chef, but due to a lack of interest in culinary art, not all Quebecois people know of him.

In French, there is an expression: "Un prophète n'est jamais reconnu dans sa propre patrie." What this means is that a prophet is never recognized by his people. Picard embodies this expression; he is a world-renown chef and yet not fully recognized in his homeland. Most Quebecois have a hard time believing in their stars and it is time that we show them the real talent emerging from "La Belle Province".

By Virginia Bostock
Screen shot 2022-04-13 at 12.48.00 AM.pngImage source: flickr

Montreal's newest Eastern European population has recently shifted to the working class neighbourhood of Côte-des-Neiges.  Geographically located at the centre of the island of Montréal, Côte-des-Neiges is bordered by Decelles Avenue to the northeast and the Notre Dame des Neiges Cemetery to the southeast, Westmount to the southwest and the juncture of Chemin de la Côte-des-Neiges and Chemin Queen Mary. The Eastern European population of Canada amounts to only 8.5% of the population and represents less than 3% of Montréal's population.

 In response to customer needs in the area, a large Eastern European grocery store - delicatessen serves customers of Russian and East European ancestry. With fresh product from naturally smoked sausages, homemade sauerkraut, sprats and stuffed grape leaves and canned items such as chestnut purée, pumpkin seed oil and white cherry preserves customers of Bucharest Delicatessen on Decarie Boulevard are well supplied to create authentic family favourite meals.        

Montréal, with its reputation for having some of the best restaurants to be found in one city, does not disappoint.  Epicureans from all corners of the world are represented in Montréal and those with a taste for authentic Eastern European cuisine have a number of brilliant choices.

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by Mariella Castro
Screen shot 2022-04-02 at 7.07.10 PM.pngDuck in a can, Foie Gras Poutine or Pig's Head for 2... Are you salivating already and secretly wanting to go there tonight? Don't get too excited, Au Pied de Cochon is only accessible with reservations. Yes, it is at full capacity almost every night and showing up with no previous call is going to be a failed attempt to enjoy this out of the ordinary cuisine. After more than a decade of success, the appeal doesn't seem to be slowing down. There are more than 24 options you can choose from at Au Pied de Cochon carefully separated in categories such as: Foie Grais, Poultry, Cochon, Beef and lamb. No matter, which plate you chose, the satisfaction levels are astounding: consistently above all possible expectations.

People come from all over Canada and North Eastern US to experience this rustic cuisine. Au pied de Cochon, not only excels in the richness of its food, but in its ambiance and service. Personally, both times that I have dined there, I was scheduled for 10pm, but I never thought on changing my dining destination. To be honest, I was relieved since the later it was, the more space I had in my stomach!

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