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HAITI EN FOLIE: MONTREAL FESTIVAL CELEBRATES HAITIAN CULTURE!

From July 21 to July 25, the heart of Montreal will beat to the pulse of Haitian rhythms as Haiti en Folie, the biggest multidisciplinary Haitian festival outside of Haiti, kicks off for a 4th edition of infectious grooves and bewitching energy! Retro Haitian music, jazz, gospel, vaudou and reggae are on the menu for these 5 days of celebration, but so are theatre, dance, cinema, litterature and gastronomy! Chances are you might perceive Haiti as a place characterized by post-earthquake tragedy, but thankfully, Haiti en Folie is here to pay tribute to Haiti’s incredibly rich heritage and remind us why the Pearl of the Antilles got its name in the first place. Here are a some festival recommendations!

THE CREPE MAKER: LA CRÊPERIE DU MARCHÉ

Yesterday I was doing my weekly grocery shop in the beloved Jean Talon Market when my tummy started a’rumblin’. It said to me, “Daniel, please feed me something delicious and nutritious!” It’s understandable that I might get hungry in the midst of a myriad of culinary choices that the market offers. But with all those options to chose from, one can get overwhelmed. Luckily I remembered a recommendation of a friend, Canadian foodie Sarah Elton.

YOUR WESTMOUNT BISTRO: THE CLAREMONT CAFÉ

When it comes to dining in an unfamiliar city, I always look for authentic epicurean experiences. Get me out of the rat race of tourist restaurants and corporate chain eateries, and into a neighborhood bistro where I can actually observe (and participate in) the culture of the city. I want to eat where the locals are eating. And you, my dear reader, probably share my affinity for local eating experiences.

FIVE VERY FRENCH THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL

Montreal may be far away from Paris. But sometimes it’s pretty close. Here are four addresses to indulge into the original French lifestyle of Montreal

THIS WEEKEND IN MONTREAL [JUNE 18 to 20]

It’s our job to find great things for you to do in Montreal. And we’re not going to lie to you, finding great things to do in Montreal is like hoping to find chocolate in a chocolate factory. This weekend is packed again with fun things to do and see in the city. Get out there and enjoy our 10 recommendations! —————————————————————————————————————— [festival] FIRST PEOPLES FESTIVAL – A celebration of indigenous culture, community, cinema and other artistic forms, this festival is a ‘Must See’ for anyone interested in a unique, authentic and historic experience. First Peoples’ art showcased in the major arena it warrants. [music festival] FRANCOFOLIES – Reflecting the thriving French-speaking music world, this 20-year-old festival is for anyone with a penchant for international song. Many free outdoor shows. Profitez! (TIP: The golden voice of Arica, Salif Keita, plays on Friday night!)

JEFF PULVER AT MONTREAL WEBCOM (AND BEYOND)

Jeff Pulver was in Montreal last week for Webcom 2010. If you’re a social media fan, Jeff Pulver needs no introduction. Haven’t heard of him? Now is the time to pay attention!

24 HOUR MONTREAL RESTAURANTS (TO FUEL YOUR LATE ADVENTURES)

There is nothing that closes off a killer night out like a burger, some greasy fries and a soda. The fat and carbs from neon-bathed diners help to absorb the evening’s over-consumption, thus reducing the potential of an inconvenient hangover. In fact, the restorative properties of poutine, for example, have been proven by scientists. And by “scientists” I mean “frat-boys-who-study-leisure-sciences.” And I wouldn’t necessarily trust that crowd, but their research has been an integral contribution to formulating a perfect party night. The last leg of an epic evening often ends with comfort food. Here are 5 Montréal greasy spoons to keep your adventures fuelled.

MONTREAL ON THE CHEAP

Montreal is the perfect destination for anyone living in North America looking for a significant change of scenery without having to travel to the end of the world.  It is only an hour flight from New York or Toronto, yet feels a lot more like a trip to Europe. On top of saving on plane ticket fees and jetlag ramifications, you’ll be happy to hear that Montreal is also a very affordable city. With its vibrant cultural scene and bountiful summer festivals, Montreal has all it takes to offer you a memorable time without breaking the bank. Here are some ideas for a sensational Montreal trip on the cheap!

MONTRÉAL’S BEST PODCASTS

When podcasts were first introduced, they were usually about the things that most interested the internet-savvy people that first made them. But, as the rest of us caught on, the subject matter grew to include almost everything. So now that it’s 2010, when it comes to Montreal’s best podcasts, there’ a little something for everyone…

Hey Cupcake!

It’s been many years since Carrie Bradshaw brought the cupcake back from its decadent hibernation. And the cupcake craze has been roaring ever since. Montréal has a few places to indulge in petits gâteaux (aka cupcakes), and Les Glaceurs is one of my faves.