Posted tagged ‘montreal’

Some recent acquisitions

September 1, 2010

A cute key holder from Montreal:

A back massager (works quite well, though it doesn’t go as high as I’d like it too):

A ceramic coin holder (well at least that’s what I made it) from an antiques store in Plymouth:

A lighthouse piece of art (boyfriend loves lighthouses) from Plymouth:

Mums from my sister:

Stop & Shop cookies from my sister (I wouldn’t normally mention grocery store-brand cookies, but these ones are amazing! Almost as good as cookies from Weggies!):

A Frenchy shirt from Montreal (yeah, I know it needs to be ironed):

I’m so lucky with all this cool stuff!

Some of what I consumed during my recent trip to Montreal

August 24, 2010

A chocolate banana crepe:

A salade nicoise (from the Nice region of France, with tuna, anchovies, ripe tomatoes, hard-boiled eggs, olives, and more):

A homemade “flamm” (kind of like a flat bread pizza) with onions, bacon (“lardons” specifically), mushrooms and grated Gruyere (Swiss) cheese:

A pint of amber beer brewed by Les 3 Brasseurs:

This isn’t me, but I’ll post it anyway! My boyfriend with his Croque Monsieur (hot ham and Swiss cheese sandwich with Bechamel sauce) and French fries:

And with his liter of “brown” beer (also brewed by Les 3 Brasseurs):

We went out for one fancy meal during our trip (unfortunately I didn’t take any pictures of our food). The restaurant was Le Grand Balcon (The Large Balcony) on Rue St. Denis (in the Latin Quarter). It’s a fairly new French-inspired establishment with an outdoor balcony (which we got a great spot on!).

Boyfriend on the balcony

I was happy to see they have a dinner “formule,” or in other words a sort of package deal for dinner. You pay twenty-something (Canadian) dollars for an appetizer, main dish, dessert and coffee (without the formule it would cost so much more!). Your choices are somewhat limited if you go with the formule, but the price is certainly right.

I ordered a goat cheese, apple and honey sort of pastry (came with some greens) for an appetizer, and he got the pistou soup (includes vegetables and mashed-up garlic, basil, Parmesan cheese, and olive oil).

For our main courses I got lamb marinated with ginger, curcuma (similar to tumeric my research indicates), and herbes de Provence (contains savory, fennel, basil and thyme flowers). He got Guinea fowl (first time) with prosciutto ham and mushroom cream. Both dishes came with seasonal veggies (I believe zucchini, carrots and green beans), and he also got some sort of potato.

The dishes were AMAZING. The meat was so tender. My boyfriend said his Guinea fowl tasted somewhere in between chicken and duck (not as dry as chicken, not as greasy as duck). He said he still prefers chicken, though acknowledged the meat was perfectly cooked.

For dessert we both got chocolate cake with creme anglaise (English creme) and caramel, and tall espressos. Very good!

Oh yeah, and with dinner we had a bottle of some French blush wine that was OK. The service at the restaurant was also OK– our French speaking-only waiter was very very nice, but it took a long time for our dishes to come out. Also, there were several spiders making webs near me on the balcony, which wasn’t too pleasant.

We had an amusing experience while at the restaurant. An American woman at the other end of the balcony had her purse stolen during the course of the meal. She was freaking out, of course, saying the purse contained $100, a digital camera, a cell phone, a GPS, etc.

I was trying to help her communicate with her credit card company in French over the waiter’s cell phone when the police arrived (one of the restaurant employees had called the police about the incident). They had just found the purse a few blocks away on the ground! And someone had gotten a picture of the lady who took it. She was on the loose, but most of the American woman’s belongings were still there. The thief had only taken the $100.

It was pretty crazy watching this scene take place. It made me hold onto my purse extra tight for the remainder of our trip.

Vacation is over

August 21, 2010

Just got back from an awesome wedding in Cavendish, Vermont; a drive through northern New York state including stops at Fort Ticonderoga, the Ausable Chasm, and Plattsburgh; and four days in Montreal. What a great time I had!

I will post some of my pics (the ones here are borrowed) once I get a new transfer cable for my camera. Here were some highlights from my time away:

  • I learned what Fall webworm is from seeing the moth’s larval-stage nests in northern New York. They are disgusting-looking! Imagine having them in a tree right next to your home!

Fall webworm webs

  • I saw that Montreal is undergoing a TON of construction. It’s like everywhere you walk there’s a crane, orange cones, and pits in the ground. One big project is a new arts center along Rue St. Urbain. I understand they’re trying to get work done before the weather worsens and college starts, but wow! If you’re unemployed in Montreal, consider becoming a construction worker!

At St. Catherine and St. Urbain streets

  • I saw how happy my friends Lindy and Steve were to get married. Their lovely wedding in the garden of a rustic castle in Vermont and handmade vows made me tear up majorly.

They're married now!

I’ll be back with more insights from my trip!

Images from,, and Johanna Howland