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After hearing a couple murmurings of a new ramen place downtown, we stopped by Ramen Misoya montreal for a quick bite to eat. Doing some research online led us to find that Ramen Misoya is actually an international chain that has been recommended by the Michelin Guide in 2013. Cool.
Having recently learned that brunch was back on at the Hoof after a two year hiatus, – this time at the Hoof Raw Bar – and the fervent excitement that accompanied its re-opening, we stopped by for a bite to eat Sunday morning to see what the hype was about. In true Hoof style, the menu is unapologetic, it’s in your face and it’s aggressive. If your idea of breakfast is butter on white toast, you’re in for a big surprise. In other words, this is not the place for you.
This place has so much hype it’s ridiculous. Everyone that I’d spoken to in Toronto had already been to Banh Mi Boys and every single person raved about it. When talking about it in groups, people nodded knowingly to each other and proceeded to discuss their favourite sandwiches and sides… for minutes on end. Having had a relatively consistent reign over UrbanSpoon Toronto’s “Talk of the Town” since last year, I made it a point to check the place out this time around.
The County General is a lot of things – brunch, lunch, dinner, take-out, delivery, cocktails, wines, micro-brews and above all: bastion of southern hospitality. We couldn’t help but feel like we were stepping into a southern home kitchen when we visited the long, narrow restaurant for brunch last weekend.
Do you see this? No, this is not a joke. Lobster croque monsieur. Straight up pimp daddy baller breakfast. Steak and eggs for those of you who can get down and dirty with steak in the morning and want something heavier to tide you over from last night’s hangover (or whatever). And oeufs cocotte for those who want something a little more ‘sophistiqué’.
For those that are regular readers of the blog, you’ll know that I went to Japan in December 2012. I’ve been so busy, I haven’t yet been able to blog everything I’ve eaten there yet, so you’ll have to be patient with me. Expect a sprinkling of posts from Japan here and there for the next couple months. Here’s one I can’t wait to share: my first experience at a Michelin starred restaurant.
As if the first time wasn’t enough, we headed back to Cabane a Sucre Au Pied de Cochon for Round 2: the winter edition themed around Quebec’s famous sugar shacks or cabanes à sucre, si tu préfères. As Quebec is the world’s largest producer of maple syrup, it is no surprise that maple syrup is a major point of pride in both our economy and our cooking (does no one remember the $6 million pounds of maple syrup stolen last December?).
Okay, granted PaPa Jackie‘s is far. It’s the South Shore – but it’s not even at the tip. It’s deep in there, I’m talking neck deep. You probably won’t be casually stopping by because you’re in the area. You’re going to go because you’ve planned to – if excellent, affordable Chinese food is what you’re looking for then PaPa Jackie’s is where you need to go. Saturday night was particularly busy – every table was filled. Make sure to make a reservation before you go if you’re making the trip.
Cold soba noodles are perfect for the hotter summer months, serving as a great refreshing meal at any time of the day. I can just imagine being in Obuse in the summer, after spending a day roaming the town’s far out temples and quiet side streets and stopping in at this soba restaurant for a light lunch. The restaurant channels that zen vibe from the moment you walk in, with the bubbling water fountain at the entrance, the straw tatami mats in the seating area, the simple calligraphy based art, and the rustic, traditional hand crafted pottery pieces decorating the place. It’s like the perfect retreat.
This little gem of a restaurant is located in the residential area of Parc Extension. Open until 2 am on weekdays and up until 5 am on weekends, Restaurant Tripolis Montreal seems to have a pretty good set up to satiate those late night cravings. Small-ish, well lit and unmistakably Greek, the place is cozy in a big way: traditional Greek music plays from the speakers, the smell of grilled fish and lemons permeate the air and the diners are all pretty much hardcore Greek and/or local regulars.
We recently stopped by for a quick bite at Grinder Montreal on Notre Dame Street in Griffintown. Grinder Viandes et Vins is the newest Griffintown restaurant placing its bets on the ballooning condo high rises building up in the area. We had heard some initial positive talk about the restaurant but went in with managed expectations. Grinder Montreal has a sister restaurant Hachoir which did not impress us on our last visit.
There is just something about pho that brings people together. This is especially true on cold, frigid days like the ones we’ve been having here in Montreal lately. -20 and -30 degree weather? Yikes. A bowl of tasty, warm soup and noodles warms you up like nothing else. Looking for just that effect, we headed to Pho Bang New York in Chinatown for some of the good stuff.
On our last night in Japan, we went to Matsuskagyu in Osaka. As recommended by the New York Times “36 Hours in Osaka” travel guide, this spot is ‘where the beef is’. After two weeks of meals made up of predominantly fish, we were excited to try a meat-centric meal for a change. We headed to the Fukushima location where up a flight of stairs, and through a narrow walkway we were seated in a semi-private booth with an inlaid tabletop grill. All seatings up there have half curtains that lend a sort of privacy to the diners sitting inside so that they can grill and drink more intimately.
After a fun-filled three days in Tokyo, we had to regretfully say goodbye. Our last dinner was spent in the Ginza district, the Japanese version of New York’s 5th Avenue only cleaner, neater and newer. Making our way to Tamasushi or Tsukiji Sushi, we took the elevator up to the relatively small restaurant. I immediately fell in love with the bar seats – large scale prints of Hokusai’s legendary “Great Wave” print ( a favorite of mine) adorn the backs of the chairs. We sat around the bar and almost immediately, our food began to come forth.
Burger de Ville arguably serves some of the best burgers in the city. For an all-Canadian product and AAA graded steak cuts, a simple cheeseburger will cost you a mere $5.50. Don’t want the cheese? $4.75. Say what?! That price point is pretty unbeatable – taking into account the quality of the patty and the multitude of *free* toppings you’re privy to (caramelized onions, sauteed mushrooms, jalapeno peppers, harissa mayo, old fashioned mustard etc.) – there is hardly any other establishment that can compare on the same level. Burger de Ville serves honest, straightforward food with lots of room for customization – you’re the boss here.
These are all the ramen noodle shops we’ve reviewed so far in Montreal. Our personal favorites for best ramen montreal are Ramen Ya and Yuki Ramen. Ramen Ya is a traditional Japanese style of ramen noodle soup and Yuki Ramen is a chinese style. Let us know if we missed any – we love ramen !
Tsukiji Fish Market is the central hub for the buying and selling of fish and seafood in Tokyo. Anything that lives in the sea can be found here – from above average quality to the most premium sashimi grade kind of stuff that is not only hard to find but costs an arm and a leg too. There are also fish auctions that are held here. If you’ve seen Jiro Dreams of Sushi, the scene where Jiro’s son attends the tuna auction at the market is pretty spot on.
Restaurant Maïs is finally here. You’ve been waiting for it. Even if you didn’t realize it, all this time… you were craving tacos. Montrealers like myself have long been jealous of the plethora of bone shakingly good tacos Toronto has long enjoyed. Anchored Grand Electric and La Carnita, I have trouble eating anything but tacos whenever I’m in town.
Everything on Prohibition‘s menu sounds amazing. House cured salmon on a sesame bagel? Oooh. Shakshouka? Cool. Maple fried challah French toast with fried chicken? Hell yes.
Self proclaimed providers of ‘gourmet comfort food’, Prohibition montreal endeavours to serve brunch as it should be.