Le Cartet – a local secret
Le Cartet is a very interesting place as it is nestled in Old Montreal and it is one of those places that I have heard of only by a few people, and in each instance they all swear by the fact that it will be the best brunch in the city. Now, such as claim needs to be confirmed! So off I went on a lazy Saturday morning and prepared to challenge this claim and see if it lived up to the hype.
At 1st glance
At the base of McGill street you will find Le Cartet, with its unassuming exterior, you may actually miss it as you pass by, I know I did. Although when you walk in you can tell at first glance that this is no ordinary place – with it’s high ceiling and amazing decor that can only be described as New York city Soho style or even some new hip Toronto restaurants. There are nice wood tables and a few long tables with hanging lights and white industrial style walls. At the entrance there is a small market with various specialty foods, jams, European chocolates (the really good and proper kind) and pre-packed meals for people in the neighborhood who may not feel like eating out or cooking at home. Now that we have confirmed that the decor made an impression – off to the food.
The brunch menu is only in force for Saturday and Sundays, but it is worth waiting those 5 days of the week for the tasty reward. The menu is not an epic novel of choice but covers most favourites. Although I should note that for you omelette fans – there are none- although the menu options are tasty, filling and healthy so don’t worry. The menu style is set plates which are not your classic bacon and eggs item but much more refined while being a breakfast/brunch meal item.
There are 5 main brunch plates ($14.95-$15.95) which come with complimentary Illy coffee with refills, freshly squeezed orange juice and a sweet bread. They have a mimosa option for 5$ extra which is actually not that bad when you think of it since many places will charge more than 5$ for regular juice and its not freshly squeeze nor does it have the classiness of champagne in the morning (and yes it is ok to drink in the AM as long as its not before 10 AM).
There are other menu items that range between $5.95 – $10.95 with many of them being ham with croissant and cheddar cheese, quiche, french toast and fruit cup.
The Brunch Sante ($14.95) comes with organic granola, yogourt topped with berries, 2 poached eggs on top of bread and a mesclun salad. There is a generous selection of thickly cut fruit (none of those paper thin tasteless decorations you get on your plate at other places), cheddar cheese, and dried stuffed figs (yum). The attention to detail on this plate is quite impressive, I have never had dried stuffed figs in a restaurant. It actually brought back childhood memories of drying and stuffing figs with my grandmother in southern Italy, needless to say I was very impressed. The taste was healthy and fresh which is pretty much what a sante item is supposed to be. The Brunch Sucre ($14.95), is a french toast sweet bread drizzled with an out of this world fruit coulis, along with 2 crepes, yogourt, fresh fruit and fresh sweet cream and maple syrop served in a shot glass. I really love it when they do little things like bring syrop or cream in a shot glass it makes the plate more interesting and reminds me that not all things in a shot glass are meant to be drank (I almost made that mistake again).
Although I did not have the chance to have the “Brunch de L’atlantique” I have been told that the smoked salmon portion is very generous and on my next visit I will be checking it out.
The service was good they were quite descriptive with the explanations to our menu questions and they did pass by frequently. We also got to chatting at the end of our meal and our waiter was really nice and friendly so kudos for that.
The majority of the items are vegetarian friendly although if you are vegan you may be out of luck.
I originally felt the price (approx $15) was a bit much but when you add the free drinks, sweet bread that you get before your order and the quality ingredients on your plate it’s actually a pretty good deal. The portions are the right size and you do not have to get rolled out because you ate too much. The attention to detail is second to none and the decor is a feast to your eyes. I strongly suggest checking it out, you will not be disappointed and will add it to your list of favourite places.
| 106 rue McGill
Montreal, QC H2Y 2E5
Mon-Friday 7:00 a.m-11:00 p.m.
|Bottomless Cup Of Coffee||YES|
Free & Lot/Meters
|Public Transit Access||Get Directions|