Wednesday, December 20, 2017

NY Times: Poutine Canadian or Quebecois?

A recent article that ran in the New York Times suggested that poutine might be considered "Quebecois" and not "Canadian." I say "bonk!"
To read all the news that fit to print, here's the NY Times Dec 19/17

What do you think? Lemme know.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Northern Soul Christmas poutine

My friend Jennifer from Prescott, Ontario sent in this review. Thanks Jen!

Northern Soul is at it again with its "Holiday Poutine" in time for the Christmas season. We were able to try it out Thanksgiving weekend. 

It is a very generous serving and good from the first bite to the last. I very much enjoyed the added cranberry sauce and turkey to a traditional poutine.  Reminded me of the Madame Benoit recipe for Leftover Turkey Casserole my mom used to make after every holiday meal. Years later my own children, now men, still call it "mush" where all the components of a Christmas dinner become a one pot or casserole meal.  Comfort food at its best.  This is the same.
The picture of the complete poutine is from the Northern Soul ad on Facebook. The second picture is from when we paused a moment to catch our breath and I grabbed a shot before it was completely gone!

If you find yourself out this way, it is worth the trip to enjoy the food at Northern Soul. They have great ribs and a number of different poutine to choose from.  I hope you bring a friend along to share with. You won't be disappointed.

Northern Soul BBQ, 169 Lake St., Mallorytown, ON K0E 1R0
Phone: 613-923-2111

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Fundy Take Out

Going though my summer vacation shots, I came across these.

We drove through Fundy National Park in New Brunswick...

...and came across this little joint. While we had lobster rolls, I saw two fellows having poutine.

 I told them about my quest for poutine tasters and they were on board! One fellow gave it a 4 out of 5 curds, the other a 4.5 out of 5. The fellow on the left wasn't keen on the fries.
The guy on the right was pretty pleased with the whole thing
Overall, pretty much a two thumbs up.

 The poutine DID look good! And...did I mention the shack is by the sea?
5/5 for the view alone. Loved this place!

Fundy Take-Out, 21 Fundy View Dr., Alma, NB E4H 1E7
Phone: 506-887-2261

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Archibald at YUL

Next time I'm at Pierre Elliot Trudeau airport, I"ll be trying out this joint. 
Thanks Jack D'Mestiere for another rollicking review!
I got off the Clipper from the north and figured I'd take a stroll before my flight from YUL to YYZ. Little did I know that I would be overtaken by circumstances beyond my control. I'd spent the week behaving--eating bales of lettuce and walking. Before you get all "Wow, that's great, Jack," you need to know that I was in Kay-beck, which is how I think Québec is to be pronounced. Given that, and given my language skills, it makes it a little more difficult to put on the feedbag, but salad is salade so there you have it. The only voice whose French pronunciation is worse than mine is Ms. Google US English who pronounces Saguenay, "say-goony" and Chicoutimi "chic-oh-you-tee-me."  I'm better than that. What's that? OK, I'll get on with the story. 
So I'm walking through YUL and I note a place to get a beer. They also have poutine. Danger! I walk on. I pass another place. No poutine, but bad beer. Another place. No beer or poutine. I'm headed back to the gate when I see:
I feel my defenses crumbling. Even souvenir stands are conspiring against me. Maybe a beer will make me strong! I slide into the first place--Archibald. 

The bar man eyes me up and immediately speaks English. Still feeling strong, I order up a beer.  "Food?"  "I'll look." 

There it is and it sounds tempting. Tempting, it sounds great after a week of grazing. Summoning up all the Québécois Newshawk gave me, I called the barman and said "I'll have a Pou-tin." Not "Pou-teen". He gave me an approving look. I guess he says Ce-lyn instead of Ce-lean...

By the time he put it in front of me, I'd convinced myself I didn't need to eat it all. After all, the taste is what counts! And it was work! I was on the Poutine Chronicles beat! 
Crisp fries, a salty rich beef gravy, shredded beef in that gravy, caramelized Pearl onions, pickled onions...and lots of curds, but sorta parked on the side and not warm. Maybe it's a YUL thing, I think. And a piece of what I assume is tuile de caramel au bacon. Still don't know what that added. I'd rather just had some bacon...

The fries stayed crispy, the onions were great, I mixed the curds in to warm them up, the beef was good, the gravy rich to the end. It was damn good. Of course, for $16 for poutine, it ought to be good. 

Tempted as I am to give it a 5, I have to maintain a tough palate, even after a week of salad. Four-point-seven-five curds. I've reached new heights in splitting curds, and for an airport poutine, no less!

If you are in YUL, head on over to about gate 50. The beer's good too!

By the way, I ate it all.  "Mare-cee Kay-beck!"

Archibald Microbrasserie (Aéroport de Montréal), (zone sécurisée, face à la porte 51), Casier postal 205, 975, Romeo-Vachon Blvd N, Dorval, Quebec H4Y 1H6
Tel. 514-687-9977

Saturday, August 19, 2017

"Thanks-For-Giving" Poutine!

Jack is back! Yep, it's been a while in coming, but our most loyal contributor
 Jack D'Mestiere is back with a doozie! Please read on...

One of my favorite joints--goes by the name of Radio Room, a moniker they come by honestly as the place is decorated with radios--is helping a fund raiser this week for Providence Cancer Research Center. They call the fête Poutine-For-The-People. Sixteen different hash houses join in.
Now I like poutine as much as the next guy but 16 in a week would be too much, not to mention the 32 beers that would find a way to join in...
RayRo, as me and Dolly-girl like to call it, conjured up a Thanks-for-Giving poutine. Fries, of course. Cranberry curds--no idea where they came from. Turkey. Turkey gravy. Bread stuffing for good measure. And some green onions. The only things missing are green bean casserole and Aunt Vieve's ambrosia!

Well, I have to say that the bread stuffing, while it gussied the dish up and made it look like the third Thursday in November--or the second Monday in October for certain neighbours to the north--wasn't necessary. The curds didn't squeak so that was disappointing. The gravy was scrumptious and the turkey was cooked over a grill and tasted like the real thing, which it is. The fries held up nicely. 
So, what's not to like. No squeak. I'll deduct a curd for that. 4 curds. If you've a mind to give them credit for the fundraiser, add a half curd!
4-4 1/2
Radio Room, 1101 NE Alberta St., Portland, OR 97211
Phone: 503-287-2346.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

20 of Toronto's over-the-top poutine

Toronto Life just published its "20 of Toronto's most preposterous over-the-top" poutines list. Here's the link: Toronto poutine

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Atwood Restaurant

Yay! Jackie's back! Another great review by Jack D'Mestiere

Me and Dolly-girl tied on our travelin’ shoes and headed off to what we here in the land south of the Great North call The Windy City. Dolly-girl fancied seeing’ some sort of musical show about when KG III, whoever that is, was getting’ the boot from what was to become the Third Nation while the First Nations watched thinking, “Damn, we should have locked the door…”

We took the Clipper from Stumptown, the train from the aerodrome, and Shank’s Mare from the depot to our lodging. While we were doing’ the paperwork, the clerk thumbed in the direction of the hotel restaurant and said, “Pretty good spot to tie on the feedbag in the A. M.” That was soundin’ like sound advice for a couple weary travelers.

Turns out, it was. Come morning, we didn’t have to drag ourselves more than a few feet and what to my wondering eyes should appear…oops, wrong season…when I looked at the What-We-Got, I spied…

bacon & eggs poutine! How could I possibly pass that up? “I could pass that up!” Dolly-girl rolled her peepers and looked skyward with the usual unsaid, “How did I end up with this guy?”

I ordered a feed-bag full and before long, what to my wondering eyes…I mean, a gorgeous platter appeared

I dug in. Let’s do this by the numbers: 

First, the fries were fresh, made in the house, and fried like fries should be fried. Or is that frited like frites…
B. The curds were generous, real curds, and even though melted, they squeaked! 
iii. The gravy was a taste-treat made from a clucker, rich, just the right thickness, and just the right amount of salt for me (Dolly-girl: “You know, Jack, Dr. Rachel S. Graves, MD would not enjoy your working at cross-purposes to that handful of pills you take…”)
d. The hen fruit on top were cooked perfectly—aesthetically pleasing and done enough that when the yolks ran they didn’t really increase the fry-saturation factor (I believe that’s called Ψ something) significantly. Whoa, where’d that talk come from Jack?
and 5. The farm-style bacon came in thick cubes and what doesn’t improve with bacon? Even Dolly-girl said, “Hey, Jack, if you happen across a cube or two of cured porker, you could flip a couple my way…"

Five out of five! I don’t believe I’ve ever awarded 5 curds to a poutine. But 5 it is.

If you’re in the Big Windy and hungry for poutine, check out Atwood, Southwest corner of Washington & State, Chicago, Illinois, USA

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Beast Restaurant

A quick poutine review from my niece Sam. This time poutine gnocchi!
My niece Sam dropped me a note and let me know she and her better half went to Beast on Tecumseth in Toronto. She tried their version of poutine: fried gnocchi, chicken and peas, cheese curds, creme fraiche.
When I asked her for a rating out of 5 curds, she gave it a strong 4. Her partner, however, didn't like it. Opposites attract, right?

Beast Restaurant, 96 Tecumseth St., Toronto, ON M6J 2H1 
Phone: 647-352-6000
Website: Beast Restaurant