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5 GREAT MAPLE TREATS IN MONTREAL

The end of maple season approaches as spring swings into full bloom, so if you’ve got a yen for this particularly local flavour, now’s the time to indulge…

OSTERIA VENTI MAKES REGIONAL ITALIAN FOOD SING

For casual, wholesome and handmade Italian food, Osteria Venti is the new place to be. Chef Michele Forgione is at the helm of a restaurant which just celebrated its first anniversary with a bang…

SMOKE’S POUTINERIE COMES TO MONTREAL

By now pretty much everyone the world over has heard of Montreal’s most recognizable snack food, the Poutine, so the fries and cheese and gravy of it all require little introduction. But there’s a new kid in town – Smoke’s Poutinerie  – which is a string of franchises founded by a guy who isn’t even from here. But here’s the thing: it rocks.

PASTAGA: BIG TASTE ON SMALL PLATES

The new restaurant Pastaga, which puts the spotlight on Quebec ingredients, has been garnering lots of buzz and media accolades for the creative small-plate cuisine of chef-owners Martin Juneau and Louis-Philippe Breton and the interesting selection of organic wines on offer…

CHEF MARTIN JUNEAU TAKES OVER MONTREAL’S URBAN SUGAR SHACK

The early spring tradition of the sugar shack (or “cabane à sucre”) is a given in Quebec, which, for city folk like us, used to mean piling into a car for a chilly ride up to some rustic cabin. Last year saw an ingenious innovation to the tradition: The urban-chic sugar shack of La Cabane, in the Old Port…

CHEF MARTIN PICARD’S CABANE A SUCRE AU PIED DE COCHON

Celebrity chef Martin Picard recently launched his second book, Sugar Shack Au Pied de Cochon, at his own sugar shack (or “Cabane à Sucre”), located an hour away from his wonderfully indulgent Montreal restaurant Au Pied du Cochon. The new artsy tome celebrates one of Picard’s favourite ingredients – maple syrup. In between fattening nibbles and sugary drinks, I got to chat with the Wild Chef, as he’s known on his TV show of the same name, about some of the more risqué aspects of this atypical cookbook, such as “squirrel sushi”, pole-dancing (sort-of) and, oh yeah, 100 recipes that include that gooey, golden, liquid ingredient. The Cabane à Sucre PDC 2012 season is sold out, but you can put yourself on the waiting list for next year

TRUFFLE CRAZY IN MONTREAL

Black truffle freaks will know this, of course, but here’s a word of warning to the uninitiated: the season is ending soon. Some restaurants in town still have them available – XO, Le St Urbain and Venti, for example – but only for a few more days…

VALENTINE’S DAY IN MONTREAL

Oh Saint Valentine’s Day. Intimate candle-lit dinners, slow and seductive gazes over the rim of a wine glass, the smoldering glow of a crackling fireplace, the delicate smell of rose petals as snow slowly falls in love with the ground… Montreal has always been a hopeless romantic, here’s how to make the most of it on February 14…

DISHCRAWL MONTREAL: “A PUB CRAWL WITH FOOD”

We all know that special dining experiences are only half about the food – the company is also of utmost importance. The increasingly beloved and buzzed-about Dishcrawl is an ingenious idea that utilizes the genius of social networking and combines it with a real-life pursuit of food happiness…