May 10th, 2013
Living in Montreal, surely you might know that many greatest places offer an “After 10″ menu (Milos, Leméac or Ferreira Café to name a few). But when searching for an emplacement for this celebratory evening, I was pleased to learn that one Outremont specialty had a “21 after 21″ offering.
Restaurant Chez Lévêque, is one Laurier street institution. Monsieur tells me his godfather has been a regular for the past 30-something years. That is why, on a quiet Monday evening, after finishing my class at 9pm, I met Monsieur in front of the french bistro-style restaurant. Inside, tables were full with the nocturnal clientele. We sat by the window and got a glimpse of the kitchen in the back. A waiter brought a selection of breads (I chose baguette white), baked in house by Daphné, the baker/pastry chef. The 21$ night menu includes an entrée or dessert with a main dish, and given the price, the selection is fabulous! You get a choice of ten complex and fine dishes – sautéed beef bourguignon served with mashed potatoes or crab cake with horseradish sauce with french fries/salad are some on the list. The entrées and desserts are just as interesting.
I started with a gratinéed two-cheese French onion soup while Monsieur opted for poultry liver mousse with porto jelly and onion jam. As per usual, I didn’t try my better half’s liver but was comforted by my delicious soup. Not too cheesy, not too salty, a real treat on a cold evening (the dish is seasonally available, so consider me lucky). Next came our mains. I ate my heart out with a Herford 8 oz sirloin steak with choron sauce, served with French fries and sautéed vegetables. A velvety mayonnaise was served with my fries, which made it all the more gluttonous (and amazing). Monsieur chose duck fillets in madera sauce with linguine, served in a little Asian inspired bowl. He said he loved his dish… but frankly I was too transported enjoying mine that I can’t remember much from the conversation. The portions, I must note, were in accordance with the clock. A tad smaller (I assume) than those of the Main Courses menu, and just right so you don’t roll out of there when the clock hits midnight.
Given our 7 year anniversary, we went a little naughty… and ordered the Chocolate Royal Cake with crispy praline to end our feast. It hit a high note on an already marvellous supper. Served with strawberries, it made our hearts melt a little.
In the end, I loved our discovery (and urge you to try it out). How they make money with that impressive after 21h menu, I know not. Frankly, I’m more concerned with when’s the next time I’ll be there…
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March 25th, 2013
Today’s our 7-year anniversary! So I figured it’s the perfect excuse to share with you how it all began…
One Saturday, after Russian School (where we met) we took the bus to see V for Vendetta at the Paramount theatre downtown. The movie was really intense and I kept squeezing his arm and leaning on his right shoulder. Shortly after, the credits started rolling in and Monsieur went for it.
After the Great First Kiss we walked a few blocks down to Chapter’s Starbucks where Monsieur ordered us a Toffee Nut Latte to share. (In the months leading up to that Saturday, I’d sometimes skip class and head to this Starbucks with him and talk for hours on end… Our drink of choice: a Toffee Nut Latte, every time).
I remember there was a dog magazine on the table, and suddenly I was asking him what breeds of dogs he liked… I also remember wearing a white pretty lace top from Zara, and my sexy Pure Poison perfume.
That night, I was sleeping over at a friend’s house (she was a little younger and her parents were away so you could call it babysitting). Monsieur walked me to her doorstep, we kissed goodbye, and I went up the elevator all excited. Of course I told my friend Lisa all about it, and then it was one Great Sleepless Night as I lay there replaying the entire evening in my head with butterflies in my stomach.
Voilà! And the rest is history :-) Happy Anniversary love xx
*** the pictures are from our first trip to Europe (when we were babies) in 2009. We had spend the whole day walking around Siena and after molto gelato started snapping these. I knew one day I’d do a collage :)Posted in couple life | Leave a comment
March 20th, 2013
Just a few days ago, Monsieur and I got a taste of the Old Continent at the restaurant Alpenhaus.
Well hidden on rue St. Marc, the Helvetic-style restaurant is complete with a roaring fireplace, a live piano performance, and an Old worldly ski-lodge feel. The customers here are from an older-crowd, regulars, perhaps, who come for the impressive fare.
Chinese or Swiss fondue, sausages with sauerkraut, Hungarian goulash or Wienerschnitze grace the menu. We began our evening with a Swiss cheese fondue which spoke of white wine and Kirsch and came with baguette bits. Our host had a thick German accent, which made me smile. As mains, I opted for a Züri Gschnätzlets (veal in a creamy sauce and röstis) while Monsieur chose veal medallions in a mushroom sauce. Both plates were tender, comforting and done to perfection. The röstis had a crunch to the surface, and the plate went so well with red wine. As for dessert, our forêt noire cake was bland, definitely not up to par with the decadent main dishes.
Overall, it was difficult to imagine yourself in downtown Montreal, since every element transported you to the Alps, to a blissful supper after a long day on the slopes.
After supper we headed to see Oz, but let’s be honest, after a bottle of vino, it was OZzzzz…Posted in restaurant recommendations | Leave a comment