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Behind the scenes with Normand Laprise at Toqué!

In a previous post, I visited a farm with talented chef, Normand Laprise, from Toqué! — one of Montreal’s top restaurants. After our field trip, Normand kindly invited to visit his kitchen! So, as a good Insider, I wanted to give you a behind-the-scenes glimpse into one of Montreal’s most famous gastronomic institutions. Now you can see his culinary innovation first-hand as he continues to promote farm-fresh products in his restaurants.

Robin des Bois: socially conscious+ volunteer-run

“We’re an epicurean community centre,” explains Robin des bois (Robin Hood) founder, Judy Servay, with a grin. Like the famous philanthropist the restaurant was named after, not only are they staffed by volunteers, but they give their profits to people in need, and proceeds go to local women’s shelters and youth groups. If you’re strolling around the Plateau area in Montreal and want to grab a bite, drop by Robin des Bois and make a difference in someone’s life at the same time.

Montreal Gay Village Culinary Tour

Montreal is known for its hot n’ happening gay life, as well as its European approach to delicious dining. So it’s only logical that gayness and deliciousness converge in the Montreal Gay Village. With my friend and colleague in tow, the darling Katerine Rollet, I hopped around the Montreal gayborhood to highlight some of the best spots to explore your “epi-queer-ean” fantasies. —————————————————————————————————————— Here’s a list of our stops: La Mie Matinale | Mouth-watering muffins, coffee… plus Dalida! 1371 St. Catherine East Kilo | Chillaxin’ café with decadent desserts! 1495 St. Catherine East Tutti Frutti | Corner grocery store (baguette, cheese, beer, etc) 1251 Maisonneuve East O’Thym | Delicious French Bistro, Apportez Votre Vin 1112 Maisonneve East Mozza | Cozy Italian Resto, Apportez Votre Vin 1208 St. Catherine East Le Saloon | Funky Lounge, Martinis, DJs 1333 St. Catherine East Le Resto Du Village | 24-hour Greasy Spoon 1310 Wolfe —————————————————————————————————————— If you have any questions, feel free to write inquires in the comment section!

Romantic dinner at the Montreal XO restaurant

Of all the elegant restaurants in Montreal, the XO Restaurant is probably the most opulent and the most romantic. Newly renovated, it retains the all the majestic charm of turn-of-the century British architecture. Even though the restaurant is literally steeped in history, the cuisine is quite contemporary.

Sipping Vino with Vaynerchuk

America’s hottest sommelier, GARY VAYNERCHUK, was in Montreal last week for the launch of his inspiring, best-selling book, CRUSH IT!

Montreal’s best new restaurant – Salle à manger

Every year, EnRoute, Air Canada’s in-flight magazine publishes their exclusive list of Canada’s 10 Best New Restaurants. All new restaurateurs wait with baited breath to see if they make the grade. This year, the only restaurant in Montreal to make the top ten this year is Salle à manger. Since I’d never been there, I thought this was a great excuse to go and check it out. Like many other people out there looking for their soul mates on the Internet, one of my friends often meets her dates at the bar at the Salle à manger. I had to go see for myself if the ambiance could really lead to some interesting encounters.

Montreal Italian restaurant: Euro Deli

Euro Deli is one of those special places in Montreal that is packed with customers from 9 in the morning ‘til midnight. This cafeteria-style Italian restaurant on St. Laurent is one of the hippest places on the lower main. It’s a really chill atmosphere, with a cool mixed crowd of loyal customers devoted the science of the perfect slice and serious espresso.

Le Saloon: Delicious Martinis (and Tasty Servers)

Whether you are a visitor searching for a stylish parlor or you’re a local queer with an appetite for ambience, Le Saloon is often the first choice for dining and drinks in Montreal’s gay village. But why is that?


There are millions of recipes for Thanksgiving turkey. Why not try something different this year that will get you in the mood to travel? Frédéric Morin, the chef from the famous Montreal restaurant, Joe Beef (featured in the final issue of Gourmet magazine), will be showing us how to make a Thanksgiving turkey with some typical Montreal ingredients such as bagels, smoked meat, and maple syrup. Not only will you make the most original turkey on the block, you can impress your guests with some souvenirs from your trip to Montreal…and maybe even inspire them to book a ticket to the belle ville.

Montreal Restaurants: Taste Peru at Mochica

Have you ever eaten llama while surrounded by artefacts in a museum? Well, that’s what it’s like at Mochica, a Peruvian restaurant on Montreal’s busy St-Denis Street, where good taste applies to the food as well as your general culture.