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Quebec City in 2015 and also 2017


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New York Times article on the explosion of culture and restaurants in Quebec City. It's not really news, but the NYT survey is a useful map.

 

La Planque 1027, 3e Avenue

 

 

Almost as local were the ingredients on the plate, something that we found at almost every meal we had during our trip.

“It’s part of me, using products from Canada,” Mr. St.-Pierre said. A tartare of bison (from Alberta) was rich and pleasantly funky. Delicate, lightly cooked New Brunswick salmon arrived mingled with blue mussels escabeche, like sweet and sour candy from the sea. We shared three Québécois cheeses, an excellent end to a spectacular meal.

 

 

Legende, par la Taniere 235 Rue St Paul

 

 

We started with a platter of charcuterie (mostly house-made) and some oysters, all excellent. The food that followed was the most ambitious (and expensive) we had in town, but also satisfying, even homey: pork belly with radish and fennel; a brouillade of morels and ram’s head mushrooms and foie gras in consommé. We paired it all with two bottles of wonderfully crisp, fruity white wines from the Niagara region.

 

 

and

 

Le Clocher Penché 203, rue St.-Joseph Est; 418-640-0597; clocherpenche.ca/en.

Deux22 222, rue St.-Joseph Est; 581-742-5222; deux22.com.

Dose Bar à Café 542, Boulevard Charest Est; dosebaracafe.com.

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/16/travel/quebec-city-st-roch-restaurants-museums.html?action=click&contentCollection=travel&region=rank&module=package&version=highlights&contentPlacement=1&pgtype=sectionfront&_r=0

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  • 6 months later...

Wall Street Journal offers a "concierge guide" to Quebec City. That usually amounts to asking a chef, an artist, a writer, and one other person what's happening these days.

 

L'Affaire est Ketchup

 

Legende

 

Rem Koolhaas' new St Roch creation Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec will open later this year.

 

Gourmet and restaurant owner Arnaud Marchand suggests Restaurant Initiale. "I used to work at this very inventive French restaurant 10 years ago and really respect the chef, Yvan Lebrun. He is passionate about food and using local products. Try the scallops." 54 rue St.-Pierre in the art district, just off Cote de Montagne. https://www.relaischateaux.com/us/canada/initiale-quebec-quebec

 

Festival operator Daniel Gelinas mentions French Fare // Le Saint-Amour. "It’s famous for its classic French cuisine. When musicians come to Quebec City, like Sting or Paul McCartney, they all eat here." 48 rue St.-Ursule, saint-amour.com

 

http://www.wsj.com/articles/an-insiders-guide-to-quebec-city-1457038670?tesla=y

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During an early summer visit, my wife and I started our exploration at the workplace of another of those young chefs: the restaurant La Planque in Limoilou, a working-class neighborhood on the other side of the St.-Charles River now peppered with hipster types. We wandered through its broad, leafy streets, passing a street fair where a girl not older than 7 wowed a small crowd with her skateboarding technique. (Having to survive long, hard winters means Quebec is packed with fairs and festivals all summer.)

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  • 1 month later...

Still have one more day here. Overall, the food is... fine, I guess? A lot less like Montreal than I expected. Also tons of mini greens and edible flowers at the higher-end places, which is bizarre. That or I'm eating at the wrong restaurants?

 

Korrigane

 

Ended up being the only place we could get into on a Sunday night. Some improv auditions were happening in the main room. Super-simple food – burgers, nachos, fish and chips, that sort of thing. Had some nice enough beers.

 

Le Moine Échanson

 

Lovely little natural wine bar. Had a great oxidized white wine, La Sorga Chat Zen, a blend with Chasan, a varietal I'd never heard of before... they had a couple of orange wines by the glass too. Food was just fine, the sort of thing you'd expect at this sort of thing... not as good as Wildair, say, but fine.

 

Initiale

 

(Lunch) Modern haute French. Pretty good, not mind-blowing or anything, but quite solid. Had the lunch tasting – a pretty good terrine of foie to start, then nicely fried quail breast with delightfully crispy skin and a quail leg formed like a little tube with breading, then a fine piece of beef filet. I mean, I'm sure this is the kind of place that Orik would hate (not that Orik would be caught dead in Quebec City), but I generically like this kind of thing. I feel embarrassed to sound as positive about this place as I do, here.

 

Chez Muffy

 

(Lunch) Formerly Panache. Farm-to-table-ish. Had a nice salad of local cherry tomatoes (though the cherry tomatoes still had their stems on for some reason) and local buffalo mozzarella, then a nice crispy fried sweetbread main on a bed of garlic scapes and potatoes. It was good and I enjoyed it. It looks like the dinner tasting menu is more of a production, but I was happy to have a well-executed NBC-ish meal. I don't eat enough sweetbreads in New York, honestly.

 

Le Saint-Amour

 

This is like the sort of "best French place in town" in middling American cities that we keep making fun of, except I guess actually more... ish. The food and room both seemed just quite dated... weird greenhouse-y room with plants. For whatever stupid reason this was the first time in years I'd done a tasting menu with a wine pairing, so I ended up spending like twice as much as any other meal, for food that in some ways was the least satisfying meal I had here. Nothing was bad – in fact things were fine, they were just... I guess sort of dated-seeming? There were some nice things – a terrine of foie and mushrooms, and some nice venison. Maybe I just didn't think this was worth it. I dunno. I'm making it sound worse than it was. Like there was a surf-and-turf-ish thing with pork belly, arctic char, and an eggplant puree, and everything was fine individually, but the overall impact was like "why are you doing this?".

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MNBAQ... well, I only saw the contemporary art wing because the MICCAI gala was there. It's OMA, but Koolhaas wasn't personally the architect. It's also not in Saint Roch.

 

The contemporary art collections were... fine, I guess? The art/design stuff was okay too but, you know, not much beyond novelty to recommend it. There was an Inuit art gallery in the contemporary art wing, too – contemporary art in whalebone and all that, except I don't know enough about that genre to really be able to recognize it as contemporary.

 

I did spend quite a bit of time looking at Jean-Paul Riopelle's Hommage à Rosa Luxemburg in the basement, though.

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Initiale

 

(Lunch) Modern haute French. Pretty good, not mind-blowing or anything, but quite solid. Had the lunch tasting – a pretty good terrine of foie to start, then nicely fried quail breast with delightfully crispy skin and a quail leg formed like a little tube with breading, then a fine piece of beef filet. I mean, I'm sure this is the kind of place that Orik would hate (not that Orik would be caught dead in Quebec City), but I generically like this kind of thing. I feel embarrassed to sound as positive about this place as I do, here.

 

 

Thanks, I'll put it on my list for dining in QC when I'm dead.

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