EYE Ate My Way Through Montreal!

Hi Everyone!

Recently The Traveling Eye visited Montreal, Canada.  Ja’Vonne and I had a wonderful time getting to know this beautiful city.

Those of you who have followed our travels know that we are big time “foodies”.  My theory is, “To get to know the real spirit of a city, you must taste the cuisine.”  Okay, it may be a weak theory but it is my excuse to eat my way through a city without guilt.

Montreal did not disappoint in the art of cuisine.

Bonnie, Chef Jean-Francois Plante, Ja’Vonne

Our first taste of Montreal began within our hotel, Le St-Martin Hotel Particulier Downtown located at 980 De Maisonneuve Blvd. West. Celebrated Chef Jean-Francois Plante’s The Bistro L’Aromate is the hotel’s signature restaurant and is positioned on the main floor of the hotel with additional dining on the Mezzanine.  The decor gave me a feeling of fine dining in a very relaxed atmosphere.  Diners are not rushed through their meal so one can sit and enjoy the flavors of the food, wine and conversation, leaving the dining experience fulfilled.  The dishes were wonderful and seasoned well.  From the appetizer,(I had the scallops which were absolutely delicious), to the entree,

Salmon with Mango Salsa

(my salmon with the mango salsa was divine), to the dessert,(it was so good and decadent),   my mouth was singing the happy song from all the wonderful flavors that were dancing on my tongue.  Breakfast the next morning was just as good.  Our visit to Montreal had started off on the right foot.

When friends found out we were going to be visiting Montreal we were told we must try the dish of Montreal called Poutine. Poutine was created in 1957 in Quebec and means “Mushy Mess” and I would have to agree that it is a great description.  The dish is a plate of fresh French cut potato’s, deep fried in lard with cheddar cheese curds sprinkled on top and covered with a brown gravy.  It sounds like and probably is a heart attack on a plate but it is so good.  We experienced this Canadian “Soul Food” at an restaurant called La Banquise. It is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and has a menu of 22 different types of Poutine.  Howard, our videographer from Video Twist Productions,

Elvis Poutine

and I had the Elvis Poutine which has ground beef, mushrooms and green peppers added to the fries, cheese curds and gravy.  Ja’Vonne had the Bacon Poutine. Everything is good with bacon. Even though every thing tasted great, Ja’Vonne and I couldn’t get through half of our plate, however, Howard had no problem at all being a member of the “clean plate club”.  The price for the dish is a reasonable $5.00 for a small plate and $8.00 for a large.  After a long night of partying in Montreal, La Banquise is the place to go to “soak up” some of that fun.

Ja’Vonne and I love fresh produce markets and there is an awesome one in Montreal.  To be honest I am not sure if Premiere Moisson Boulangerie is the name of the market or a store within but either way it is a great place to be.  The smell of fresh bread whiffs from the bakery, while you pass stalls and stalls of colorful fresh fruits and vegetables.  You will even find cheese curds in case you want to make your own poutine. We stopped at one stall where a woman was making maple pops from fresh maple syrup.  She heats the syrup and then pours strips of syrup on ice. She then takes a Popsicle stick and rolls the maple syrup on it.  It is so good but the key is to put the whole syrup pop in your mouth or it will get all over you. Just ask Ja’Vonne. 

Ja’Vonne and the Maple Pop
Making Maple Pops

 When we landed in Montreal our driver told us we could not leave the city without trying a Smoked Meat Sandwich from Schwartz’s. It took us a few days but we finally made it over to Schwartz’s to see what was so great about this sandwich.  When we pulled up to the building there was a line outside the door and down the block.  It is a small Deli with sit down seating but the line moves fast and it is really worth the wait.  A smoked meat sandwich is like our corned beef sandwich only sliced a little thicker.  We each ordered a sandwich, pickles and a plate of fries.  I don’t know what it is about fries in Montreal but they are so tasty.  The sandwich is well seasoned, moist and very good.  We understood why Schwartz’s was the place to go for this great tasting signature sandwich of Montreal.

Smoked Meat Sandwich

We had a wonderful culinary experience by eating some different foods in fun places while gaining 5 pounds in the process.  EYE thoroughly enjoyed eating my way through the great city of Montreal.

Until next time, keep your EYE to the sky!

Bonnie DeShong