Two of my favorite things to do when visiting another country or a new place? Take a cooking class or a food tour. I reserved an Old Montreal food tour while planning our trip, choosing Local Montreal Food Tours. Our tour guide Sebastian was fantastic, and we had a group of tourists from a handful of different countries!
|Brit 'n Chips|
Our first stop was Brit 'n Chips, for traditional British cod fish and chips of course! This place got a seal of approval from the British couple in our group, and I liked it a lot. I'm not a big fish person, but it was tasty nonetheless!
|Brit 'n Chips|
Next, we visited Cantinho de Lisboa, the market and restaurant from a Portuguese chef (and Quebec transplant) Chef Helena Loureiro. I loved seeing her grandmother's recipes framed on the walls!
|Cantinho de Lisboa|
I don't know much about Portuguese cuisine, but we basically had soup and salad. The salad was a cod garbanzo salad, which was interesting. Again, I'm not the biggest fan of fish, but the combination was good! The soup was called caldo verde, with potato, greens, and I believe some sausage.
|Cantinho de Lisboa|
The tour was more than just local stops for food. It was a lesson in the story of the city, from history to architecture to local life and trends. Between the two Quebec cities we visited, we learned to guess what era each building came from (French, British, Canadian!).
We even ate inside an historic building, an old bank! The Crew Cafe serves as a restaurant in the co-op space, where tons of people (mostly freelancers, I'm guessing) would rent meeting space or work space. It was a neat concept!
We ate a sort of deconstructed BLT sandwich, with aioli and prosciutto. The bread was excellent, and we ate at those tables where you used to write checks and fill out forms at the bank.
One of my favorite stops on the trip was Cookie Stéfanie. Dan and I don't have gluten allergies, but we know people who do. I have always felt like gluten-free stuff was kind of a novelty, and often not as tasty as the stuff made with gluten. (Sorry not sorry, this was based on my previous experience!) Cookie Stéfanie knocked my socks off. We tasted their carrot cake, and I wish we'd gone back to have their grilled cheese and other goods!
Seriously, carrot cake. It was one of the best I've ever had. There was pineapple in the cake that kept it moist and good, and I wish I had the recipe.
Our next stop was Le Petit Dépanneur. A dépanneur is a convenient store in Quebec-speak, and the one we visited in Old Montreal was adorable and more high end. So cute!
Our treat there was their soft-serve ice cream, which was vanilla with bits of apple. It was a sunny, nice day on our walk, so I very much appreciated it.
From there, we walked along the water and learned more history of the city.
We could see some interesting apartments across the water that were part of the 1976 Olympic Village. Apparently they are still very sought-after real estate!
Our last two stops were near one another. The first was a brewpub, Les Soeurs Grises, named for the Grey Nuns of Montreal. The name means both "the grey women" and "the drunken women", a reference as they had some associations with bootleggers in their history. Definitely a cool name for a brewery! We tasted a couple of beers and cheeses.
Our last stop was another one of my favorites, Soupe Soup. I am usually a savory over sweet girl, but the pudding chômeur was yum! I actually made the recipe when I got home. It's a traditional dessert with lots of maple syrup, kind of like a bread pudding and a cake. I definitely think it will be a recipe I keep in my back pocket!
I love a good food tour, and we really enjoyed this one. We saw a good amount of Old Montreal, and we learned from great fun facts too. Thanks to our tour guide Sebastian, we had a great time.