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Meet a Montrealer: Sleiman-Tanios Chahwan, Owner of Adbeus

Sleiman is busy, a free spirit of Lebanese descent raised in Montréal, and a citizen of the world. After spending time in New York and Beirut refining his skills, this entrepreneur, soon to be 27, returned to his adopted city that he deems “passionate and populated with creative, enthusiastic, and open people.” Since 2010, he has been developing Adbeus, a website listing the best independent coffee shops in Montréal, which has gradually transformed into a mobile app and dedicated project. Sleek, aesthetic and practical, this guide focuses on the product quality, ambience, service, and décor of each of the establishments visited. Rather than admitting to being a coffee expert himself, Sleiman prefers to address the experiences that accompany coffee consumption. At the beginning of April, he launched the second version of his app, downloaded over 10,000 times in Montréal alone and offering additional international cities, including Toronto, New York, Paris, Los Angeles, Prague, London, and Istanbul, all managed by trusted local partners. Tell us about the Adbeus app. It’s a handy list that fosters the discovery of independent coffee shops through a geolocation system and allows for customizing the experience with specific criteria, such as roaster, WiFi, the nearest Métro… / Read More →

Meet a Montrealer…Marie-Pier Veilleux, owner of Brasserie Harricana

Brasserie Harricana first opened its doors in Amos in 1975. Now, 40 years later, Marie-Pier Veilleux, a young entrepreneur, has breathed new life into the family business, this time in Montréal. Chairs, tables, lights and the cold storage room door were recuperated from the old brasserie and are now part of the décor of this convivial new restaurant. The concept for the brasserie is based on meal-and-beer pairings. Marie-Pier and her associate Cynthia Santamaria offer clients an array of beers to choose from. They have over 40 types of beer on tap in addition to a selection of Québec ciders, cocktails as well as American rum spiced with boreal herbs. The menu, for its part, features an array of dishes that lean toward “family” or “bistro” cuisine. The musts, unquestionably, are the spaghettini with meat, the whole chicken roasted on a beer can (for two) and the Queen Elizabeth cake served with creamy caramel. With yumminess like this, who wouldn’t want a seat at this brasserie? It’s open every day from noon to 2 a.m. And with the arrival of summer, it also offers thirst-quenching lemonades to sip on its new outdoor patio!    Why did you decide to start your… / Read More →

Meet a Montrealer: Julie Gilbert, Owner of Ô Deux Sœurs

Special collaboration with Florence Gagnon, president and founder of Lez Spread the Word Ô Deux Sœurs (which loosely translates as “At the two sisters”) is a restaurant, a caterer and an organic grocery store that has hung out its shingle on Rosemont Boulevard for five years now. Owner Julie Gilbert and her team have made it their mission to continually reinvent the pleasures of eating, adding a philanthropic twist by offering their customers quality food at affordable prices. With its “comfort food” style cuisine using local products, Ô Deux Sœurs also offers vegetarian, organic and gluten-free variations on its menu. On weekdays, you can select from the table d’hôte menu for lunch and dinner. On weekends, the restaurant serves up a sumptuous gourmet brunch. You’ll also find a list of delicious sandwiches, salads, desserts and beverages that are served all day long. As well, their new selection of coffee and a variety of prepared meals are always available on-site. For the past two years, the restaurant has been on a roll – literally – with the Ô Sœurs Volantes food truck, which dishes out equal parts salads in tortillas, meatball dishes and satisfied smiles. Ô Sœurs Volantes hits the road… / Read More →

Meet a Montrealer: Philippe Demers

Montréal’s MASSIVart and Chromatic co-founder Phillippe Demers is living proof that avant-garde art, international business, punk rock parties, cross-country skiing and next-level doughnut-loving are not mutually exclusive pursuits. The 28-year-old Demers is one of the original minds behind Montreal’s highly regarded and hugely active MASSIVart collective. MASSIVart was created to showcase art (and by extension the artists) by making it more accessible through special events and by taking it out of traditional art spaces to places where one might not otherwise expect it. This mission evolved into the model for Chromatic, an annual arts party/festival showcasing some 150 artists which takes place at the summit of Mount Royal. The social mandate of Chromatic – which also has a commercial services arm that provides events planning and art integration – is to promote artists and make sure their work is accessible to everyone. This year Montréal will be represented at the very first edition of Chromatic in Paris (April 2 to 4). Now let’s meet Demers. When at work, who are you? “I’m the general manager and the co-founder of both Chromatic and MASSIVart.” What’s the coolest thing about your job? “The coolest thing is that it’s never the same. I do… / Read More →

Meet a Montrealer: Daniel Iregui

As the Creative Director and founder of Iregular, Daniel Iregui is one of those people who is responsible for creating the rich, artistic fabric Montréal is known for. He and his colleagues François Loubert-Hudon and David Surprenant mix technology and design to create ambitious, immersive public experiences, which then travel around the world. The next piece they are doing will be at the heart of the Montréal Digital Spring launch, at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal (MAC). This is how Daniel experiences Montréal. Job: Creative Director and founder of Iregular Favourite pastime: I have a jam space in my studio where I play music with some friends. It’s always different people, so it’s like a group without a name and without albums. I love Mutek, and the jams we do around Mutek are always particularly inspired. How long have you been a Montrealer? For nine years. I’m originally from Colombia, but I moved to Toronto to finish my studies. Even though I lived there for three years, I always felt like an immigrant; but every time I came to Montréal, it was completely different. I felt at home. It was very strange, and it’s very hard to point out why. I really fell in… / Read More →

Meet a Montrealer: Bastien Poulain

Entrepreneur Bastien Poulain grew up in the seaside town of Biarritz in Southwestern France, but loves his adopted hometown of Montréal so much that he has even named his new soft drink 1642 Cola, a reference to the year that the city of Montréal was established. The package design features an image of a proud Paul de Chomedey de Maisonneuve, the city’s cofounder (along with Jeanne Mance). Poulain launched the cola in November 2014, and the drink – flavoured with a hint of Laurentian maple syrup – offers consumers a high-quality product that is made locally. Age: 31 Job: Founder and creator of 1642 Cola What are some of 1642 Cola’s eco-friendly initiatives? 1642 Cola is an eco-friendly drink made from 100 per cent local products. Our ingredients come from throughout Québec, and our labels are made of recycled paper and not plastic. Our concept was to launch a local soft drink produced in Montréal for Montrealers, thus contributing to the economic growth and vitality of the city, while minimizing the product’s environmental footprint. What has been the reaction to 1642 Cola? It can be weird selling your product to restaurant chefs, because they have tastes. But their reactions have been very good so far. They like… / Read More →

Meet a Montrealer: Dominique Anglade

With a stellar career that has spanned engineering, strategic management and high-level organizational transformations, Dominique Anglade is an unquestionable authority on good business. Who better to have at the helm on Montréal International, then, an organization dedicated to bringing new and exciting business to this fair city? This is how Dominique experiences Montréal. Job: President and CEO of Montréal International Favourite pastime: Dancing and listening to music, both pop and Caribbean. How long have you been a Montrealer? Since birth. What’s the coolest thing you’ve done so far this year? Going to the Karnaval Kanpe, at SAT. It was a party in honour of the Kanpe Foundation, where there was a mix of Caribbean and techno music, dance routines, Haitian items for sale, makeup booths – all sorts of things to recall Haiti. What’s your favourite Montréal memory? Camping in Oka, which by the way is part of Greater Montréal, as a kid. It was in the woods, by the lake, with a tent – the whole nine yards. What’s your favourite Montréal restaurant? Européa. Where do you like to go for drinks with friends? We usually hang out either at their house or mine, but if we go out… / Read More →

MEET A MONTREALER: SANTA CLAUS

Many people don’t realize it, but Mr. Christmas himself is a Montrealer. Each year, to get his fix of culture and fine dining, Santa Claus spends July and August in his Montreal summer home in the trendy neighborhood of Mile End, where he goes incognito in traditional Hasidic Jewish garb. Despite the über-busy time of year for Santa, he made a bit of time for The Montreal Buzz to chat over eggnog lattes at juliette & chocolat last weekend.

MEET A MONTREALER: MICHEL RABAGLIATI

Michel Rabagliati is a graphic novelist born and based in Montreal. He has written several semi-autobiographical comic books featuring the life and times of a fellow named Paul. In 1999, his first publication, Paul in the Country, earned him a Harvey Award for Best New Talent. We feel this is pretty darn neat. And we think you should meet Michel.

DAVID USHER ON MUSIC, MILE END & MONTREAL

David Usher is many things: musician, humanitarian, artist and father. He’s rocked around the country with his band Moist, won a handful of Junos (the Canadian ‘Grammy’) and has had radio hits on three continents. And we love him for all those reasons. But he remains especially near and dear to our hearts because he’s a Montrealer.