Thank you to everyone for the road trip suggestions! Montreal Smoked Meat was every bit as good as advertised, Poutine got mixed reviews (I loved it, the kids…not so much), and my French is every bit as bad as ever.
Favorites from the trip (So Far):
- Everyone recommended a visit to Schwartz’s Deli for the smoked meat, and I’m sure it is fantastic, because there was a line out the door, down the street, and around the corner. We needed lunch, not a 2 hour wait, so we had to switch plans. We went to Snowdon Deli instead, and were able to walk right in and start eating our Montreal Smoked meat sandwiches. (Picture at the top of the page) It was worth the trip - very similar to corned beef or pastrami, but the smoke gives it a little something extra.
- I’m a sucker for farmers markets, and Marche Jean-Talon is a good one. The central vegetable market is surrounded by a sea of specialist food places. I loved wandering around, seeing what was in season, and the beautiful displays of vegetables. It’s strawberry season in Montreal, and we polished off two quarts of mixed berries that we bought as snacks by the time the evening was over.
- Poutine. French fries with gravy and cheese curds. What could go wrong? I thought it was great - potatoes and gravy are my favorite at Thanksgiving - but the kids were not fans. Oh, well, their loss.
- French Food, Montreal Style: We stopped at Bistro L’Express, which is a traditional style French bistro, and we enjoyed it. But, for me, the highlight of the trip was Le Saint-Jacques, a French/Italian place serving modern French and Italian dishes. (Even better, it was just around the corner from our Airbnb.) I am still thinking about the chopped avocado, pineapple, and pepper salad that reminded me of a ceviche, with an emphasis on the vegetables. And, after the kids stopped freaking out about the French-only menu, they had some awesome ravioli, and steak frites to die for.
Thank you to everyone for the suggestions! My only regret was we couldn’t get to more of them - Joe Beef is still calling my name - but we only had two full days to visit. Next stop, Maine! (After a slight detour to Waterbury, Vermont for a visit to the Ben & Jerry’s factory. I need a little Chunky Monkey to fuel me for the rest of the trip.)
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