Montreal – We ate everything! This is the salad that saved me.
Last year Evan and I spent a quick three day weekend in Montreal at the tail end of a massive ice storm. The ice prevented us from traveling too far from our hotel. It was also during the seasonal closing time for many of the restaurants we wanted to visit. We were still able to have a lot of fun, but we didn’t get see and eat everything we wanted. This year we had our revenge trip of sorts. We brought friends for a four-night stay planned entirely around the places where we wanted to eat. We were going to eat poutine! Bagels! Smoked meat sandwiches! Visit all of the restaurants we missed! Healthy digestion be damned!
We hit all of the must eat places. We had bagels at St Viateur and smoked meat sandwiches at Schwartz’s. We ordered all of the appetizers at Joe Beef and Garde Manger and had amazing Lanzhou noodles at a place in Chinatown. We stuffed ourselves with Syrian and Armenian mazza at Alep and had breakfast on the veranda at Maison Boulud in the Ritz. Because, why not? We were on vacation, our reason for much eating. I highly recommend visiting all of these places if you happen to be in Montreal. The food and the service were outstanding. And with the current exchange rate, you can’t go wrong.
In between meals we shopped, visited the Pompeii exhibit at the Montreal Museum of Art and hit a spa. We took advantage of the mid-week deal at the Scandinave Spa in Old Montreal. Honestly, I can not wait to go back. We spent hours in their spa circuit, melting in their eucalyptus steam room, cedar sauna, hot pool and refreshing ourselves in the ice cold rain shower. We all ended our spa visit with the best massages we had ever had. I could have gone back each day of our vacation.
Our only folly was not having any breakfast before the spa. Four blissed out, starving adults are useless in deciding a lunch destination in an unfamiliar city. Luckily we started walking in a direction Evan, and I recognised as the way to the restaurant and bakery Olive et Gourmando. We were saved!