The 411 Ham, as a single word can evoke so much passion among food lovers. Growing up I fell in love with prosciutto – its complex flavour, salty nature and ecstasy-invoking abilities. Nothing made me happier than being somewhere where I can indulge and go hog wild on it. Over the years, my preferences have changed, evolved even, but deep down inside I still yearn for taking a perfectly sliced piece and wrapping it around my finger and popping it in my mouth. When I passed by Hambar and saw cured meat hanging in the entrance, I felt like I was in heaven. Then when I found out they offered brunch, curiosity and excitement inspired me to see what was going on.
The 411 The old port has a variety of brunch options, many of which are quite nice. You can find brunch buffets, nice sit down places, some small, and others large. The menus are quite varied and although you will not find many classic style places, you know the eggs and bacon ones simply put, doesn’t really fit. Then comes along the Gros Jambon, which is a lovely little gem in the old port. The menu itself is not a classic bacon and eggs menu, but rather has a twist, it’s kind of like a luncheonette meets small town USA diner with the expected Montreal flair.
The 411 Just recently I was presented with a scheduling challenge. Find a spot on the South Shore or close to the Jacques Cartier bridge so one of our friends could make it to his appointment after brunch and do so rather quickly. I did not feel like going down to the South Shore, so I had to find something somewhat close to the bridge. Now, I had to dig deep into my brunch map and look at an area I almost never frequent. What I found was Touski Café and Coop. I have no clue how Touski Café Coop came on my list but we were curious, hungry and on a timeline so it was decided.
The 411 – The Old Port has, over the years, brought the city a resurgence in good food. Historically known as a tourist trap, it has shaped its own identity among locals who have moved into the area drawn by new restaurants. When one looks back a couple years ago, one would not see that many fine dining spots but now things have changed for the better. There are finally new, hip and unique spots opening up and they offer food you will enjoy. So, when my friend told me that a new place opened up nearby, I was excited.
Delta Tour De Ville – Brunch with a 360 degree view
The 411All-you-can-eat Brunch Buffets, those few words can bring joy and pain to different people. Joy, because it’s all you can eat as much as you want, and you get value on food; pain because the quality of the food can take a back seat depending where you go. Delta’s has been offering brunch for as long as I can remember but I never had a chance to try it out since I generally needed a reason to go to an all you can eat brunch on account of the price being more than a normal brunch at a regular restaurant.
Le Pois Penché – 1940’s Paris in Montreal
Fancy brunch; sometimes those words can scare you or take your breath away. Fortunately, in Montreal we have lots of choice when it comes to brunch and there is almost one kind of brunch for every person whether it’s an ethnic inspired brunch, classic brunch, greasy spoon theme or a fancy brunch. Some people may find it odd to take something as straight forward as eggs and bacon and make it fancy. Don’t get me wrong, some brunch places have tried and there have been some successes and failures. So, when I hear about a fancy brunch spot I get worried because of two things: first being having to pay more for a brunch that may disappoint and the second being that the brunch may get all experimental on me. Le Pois penché has been on my list to check out for some time now. It was suggested by my friend’s brother and he knows about tons of spots so I trusted his opinion. Nevertheless, I am always worried when I eat anywhere too close to Crescent street but I was committed to giving Le Pois Penché a fair try.
Vino – Hidden Gem of NDG
My goal to visit every brunch spot in NDG keeps getting delayed because everytime I think I’ve covered them all another place shows up on my radar. Vino is one of those places. In fact, it was submitted by one of our readers who raved about it and after seeing their menu on their site I could see why. Normally places need to get in line before I review them and I usually go to places I found out existed over a year ago. Since I tend to do brunch both Saturday and Sunday, you can imagine how backed up I get. However, just by seeing Vino’s menu for brunch, I was motivated and decided that this place needed to get reviewed sooner than later.
L’arrivage – More than just a great view
High up on top of the Pointe à Callière Museum overlooking the port, is L’arrivage. This impressive little restaurant offers an interesting and inspiring weekend brunch. With its polished look, ample service staff and a menu with great attention to detail, one would expect to break the bank when it comes time to pay. However, the prices aren’t that crazy (a little more than normal) but you will see by what we ate that it is quite impressive. Reservations are strongly recommended since we saw a lineup outside.
Birks Café By Europea – A truly refined dining experience
Fancy, that’s what comes to mind when you think of Birks; that and Bling of course! Now, why would Montreal’s fanciest jeweler show up on a brunch blog? Is it because they gave me loads of free bling? Unfortunately, no. (although if they want to message me, we can talk) Is it because they ditched the whole high end jewelry business model and switched to bacon and eggs? Not that either. It’s because they started offering a weekend brunch in their store. Yes, you heard it correctly, there is a weekend brunch offered inside of Birks on the second floor and not any ordinary brunch; it’s quite the experience. So ladies and gents, make space on your credit card, we’re off to see what Birks brunch has to offer.
Marché De La Villette – Old world in the old Port
The Old Port has a bunch of nice spots for brunch; some are hotel brunches with buffets and full meals, others are really fancy and some are more laid back. Each has it’s own unique identity that makes the Old Port a fun and delicious area for brunch. Marche De La Villette makes itself unique by transporting you to France. This restaurant has that European butcher shop feel to it and pumps out some rather unique dishes.