Tag Archives: Rosemont

Poutine Review: Chez Tousignant

Chez Tousingant, Montreal, Petite Patrie

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Celebrity chef Stefano Faita, famous for his exagerrated permasmile, just opened a third restaurant in Montreal’s Little Italy with his comparatively non-hysterical-looking business partner Michele Forgione. First there was the well-reviewed gourmet upscale Italian restaurant Impasto, followed by an excellent Neapolitan pizzeria called Gema. Now, they’ve moved away from Italian toward traditional Quebecois fast food classics at Chez Tousignant.

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Tousignant opened up yesterday in the former digs of Café Espresso Vittorio on rue Drolet near Jean-Talon Market. There’s a clean 1950s retro look to the place, with a hand-painted menu, white and turquoise tiling, and stainless steel tables. The unnecessary-yet-seemingly-mandatory big screen TV in the background played The Offspring videos on MuchRetro, (not quite the same kind of “retro” as the decor).
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Poutine Review: Nouveau Système

Nouveau Systeme

There used to be loads of these classic no-frills Greek-run places around Montreal, but they are either fast disappearing or have suffered one too many modernizing makeovers. This place, which has been around since 1962, still looks the part. It is dripping with grease, has the original sixties booths, a great decor with alternating white and red stripes, broken jukebox consoles, and a hand-painted menu on the wall.
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Review: La Boulette

La Boulette - Poutine

I recently received an invitation to La Boulette from my friend Francisco Toro (New York Times columnist, anti-Chavez blogger and South Sudan development worker). He’s usually even snottier than I am about food, yet claimed they had the best poutine he’d ever come across. My interest was piqued.

The place was packed on a Tuesday night. Apparently it’s always packed. Despite the confusing mess of fonts on the sign and awning, the atmosphere inside is pleasant enough: a mix of contemporary French bistro with some hipster touches thrown in (i.e. recycled wood interior siding).
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Norwegian Poutine at Café Ellefsen

Café Ellefsen

RENAMED CAFÉ BEAUFORT, BUT MOST OF THE STAFF REMAINS THE SAME, INCLUDING KITCHEN STAFF

You don’t need to be Scandinavian to run a good Scandinavian restaurant. In fact, some of the best Scandinavian food I ever had was at Fika, a “Swedish Halal” café run by Malay Muslims in Singapore.

Café Ellefsen

Café Ellefsen is run by a Quebecer whose distant Scandinavian relatives migrated to the Saguenay. The cozy-minimalist decor is fantastic, a welcome addition to the design-starved periphery of Plaza Saint-Hubert. As a result of this, it has been colonized by young people with Macbooks.
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Review: Poutineville

Poutineville

Poutineville

A newcomer to the Montreal poutine scene, this place comes with many good reviews. Located in an former Mediterranean restaurant in Rosemont, the arched doorways and stucco ceilings still betray its former occupants. The faded Parthenon posters have been replaced with sleek black-and-white shots of London and Amsterdam. Simple tables and contemporary lamps have also been added. A large flat-screen television was broadcasting a riveting game of golf when we walked in. I’m not sure how to describe the overall effect of these disparate elements: an unusual Greco-Ikea mongrel, perhaps.

Poutineville interior

It’s nice to see poutine featured so prominently in a Montreal establishment. The owners have let their imagination run wild and offer an endless combination of ingredients, letting you design your own poutine by ticking off a sheet. A Philly cheesesteak poutine anyone?
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Review: Masson Hot Dog

Masson Hot Dog

The rapidly gentrifying Masson boulevard in Old Rosemont still has a few places reminiscent of bygone days. There’s even an old-school flag war going on between Canada Hot Dog and Masson Hot Dog. Since my allegiances tend more towards Quebec than Canada, I sampled the restaurant proudly displaying the fleurdelisé. Besides, I have this gut feeling that separatists make better poutine. In all fairness, I do promise to try out the federalist poutine some other day, having been pleasantly surprised on a recent visit to Ottawa.

Masson Hot Dog
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Review: Capri Restaurant Delicatessen

Capri Restaurant Delicatessen

Opened in 1967, this Greek-run restaurant has retro-kitsch charm. Old-school neon lights in the windows, leatherette stools,  juke boxes in the booth seats and plenty of local characters.  Service is friendly. There’s a Journal de Montreal on many of the tables, and they generally listen to the hockey game on the radio if the Habs are playing. And now for the poutine…

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Filed under 24 Hour Restaurants, Classic Poutine Reviews, Montreal