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20 Tastet favourites who serve maple all year long

Published on June 11, 2019
le flamant

The maple tree is an integral part of Quebec’s culinary culture. At school, students take time off to visit one of the many sugar shacks in the province. Every year, families from all over gather in these places to enjoy ham, sausages, bines (baked beans) and pancakes, all prepared with maple syrup. Not to mention the obligatory visit to the maple taffy stand.

We often talk about the sugaring off season, that period in early spring when the maple water starts to drip from the maple trees. Although it represents the peak of the maple season, we should not deprive ourselves of the enjoyment of maple syrup the rest of the year. In fact, an unopened can of syrup can be kept for several years.

Many chefs, bakers, pastry chefs, chocolatiers and even spice collectors have understood this. These culinary artisans, proud of the richness of Quebec’s terroir, use maple products all year round. They turn to syrup in particular, but also butter, sugar, flakes and maple water to replace sugar in certain recipes. The use of maple syrup 12 months a year allows them to favour local supply by using regional products while remaining concerned about environmental issues.

In partnership with L’Érable du Québec, we have compiled a list of Quebec gourmet addresses that use maple all year round. These addresses, thanks to their delicious work, contribute to the natural energy source that is maple and all the delights it offers. They allow us to go back to our childhood memories and to revisit a flavour we thought we knew, all year long.

To learn more about maple, you can also read our portraits of the gourmet ambassadors of this very Quebecois sugar. Such ambassadors include pastry chef Stéphanie Labelle, chocolatier Nancy Samson as well as chefs Jean-Claude Chartrand, Arnaud Marchand, Olivier Perret, Marc-André Royal and Raphaël Vézina.

Le Flamant

Located in burgeoning Hochelaga, La Table du Flamant democratizes high-end gastronomy by offering dishes that are each more creative than the last. The impressive quintet of owners create a relaxed atmosphere in a decor that skilfully combines modernity and simplicity. The chefs constantly adapt to the products in season, but always keep a special place for maple in their colourful menu.
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Bête à Pain – Fleury

After a first address in Ahuntsic and a second in Griffintown, La Bête à Pain has just moved to Laval. Wherever this team goes, they bring that impressive know-how that makes La Bête à Pain one of the best bakeries in town. In addition to a gourmet breakfast and lunch menu, La Bête à Pain shines in the pastry department where maple is used to its fullest. We particularly like the pecan cake.
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Arthurs Nosh Bar

Comfortably installed on Notre-Dame Street West in Saint-Henri, Arthur’s Nosh Bar is, since its opening in 2016, a staple brunch address in the city. Here, we’re welcomed 7 days a week, in a pleasantly lit room, decorated with touches of green. The kitchen serves updated Jewish specialties that are deliciously comforting. The maple syrup marks the sweet side of a menu that can’t help but show the chef’s penchant for all things sweet and salty. If available, it is impossible to miss the pancakes, fried egg and fried chicken, all deliciously married with maple syrup.
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Bistro Tendresse

Bistro Tendresse is located in a magnificent and minimalist space in the heart of the Village. The owners, who also own the famous Bar Renard, offer a 100% vegan and eco-responsible restaurant formula. Everything, from the wines to the cocktails to the cuisine, is vegan and, if not consumed, compostable! Open from morning to night, the place lends itself to all occasions. In the morning, we opt for the carrot pancakes topped with maple syrup. In the evening, we savour a mushroom waffle served with a maple mayo.

Hélicoptère

A little gem in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, Hélicoptère is a creative address where you can savour delicious dishes enhanced by their beautiful presentation. All of the components of this restaurant make it a favourite of Tastet. With its refreshing space, its original menu and its superb local products, Hélicoptère offers an accessible gourmet experience. From appetizers to desserts, the house uses maple to perfect, embellish, enhance and polish all kinds of dishes!
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Janine Café

Master of decadent brunches in the city, Janine welcomes a crowd of food lovers in search of comfort food to start the day on the right foot. We are charmed as much by their excellent and original brunch dishes as by the unique and festive atmosphere of the place. Whether it’s the obvious choice in the memorable homemade brioche bread with mascarpone cream and banana butter, or more subtle in the rest of the menu, maple magnifies the dishes and invites us to return whenever we’re craving a decadent brunch.
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Chez BOSS et fils

A must in Verdun, Boss et Fils offers a comforting menu of seasonal delights. The charming team masters the art of eating and drinking well. The “bon vivant” philosophy of the house is based on three components to give customers a unique experience: beautiful, delicious and generous portions. Sweet or savoury, some dishes are prepared with maple syrup to enhance Quebec’s local products! One thing is for sure: the house promises you won’t leave hungry.

Montréal Plaza

Montreal Plaza is without a doubt one of the most festive addresses in Montreal. Its reputation is well established and for good reason. Charles-Antoine Crête, chef and owner, goes to great lengths to offer an extraordinary gastronomic experience. Surprises for the taste buds are guaranteed with the delicate and delicious dishes that are renewed seasonally, as appealing to the eye as to the palate. The chef, very creative in his creations, uses maple all year round to enhance the flavours of the superb products of Quebec.

larrys

A charming cafe/bar with a European flair, Larry’s welcomes you at any time of day for a gourmet break in the Mile End. Think of Larry’s as an archetypal all-rounder; we go there for coffee and a snack, breakfast, lunch or dinner. The menu consists entirely of small bites – terrines, charcuterie, soups, salads, stews, fries, tartares, ceviche, chicken, pork chops and more – prepared with delicacy and great flavour. Everything here is very tasty. The chef told us that he uses maple syrup in a large part of his menu.
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Dinette Triple Crown

A true landmark of cuisine from the American south, the menu offers a multitude of comforting dishes that won’t leave anyone hungry! Think fried chicken, pulled pork, macaroni, buttermilk bread and their famous “Big Nasty”, Dinette-style hot chicken sandwiches among many others. This cuisine does however leave a nice place for Quebec’s terroir with the use of maple syrup year round in their many dishes, both sweet and savoury. An additional detail – and one of the reasons why the establishment is so popular – you can order your food and enjoy it in the park across the street for the perfect summer picnic!
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L’Express

A well-known restaurant, the address is a classic whose consistency never disappoints. Established on Saint-Denis Street since 1980, L’Express has become a staple in Montreal thanks, among other things, to the quality of its cuisine. With its tasteful decor and exemplary service, the restaurant represents the French brasserie at its best. If you come to l’Express, you must try the bone marrow, the chicken liver mousse, the veal liver, the veal kidneys, the ravioli or the onglet. A meeting of French classics and Quebecois products, the house is no stranger to Quebec’s delicious maple syrup that is incorporated in some of their dishes.

Cabane d’à Côté

Now open year-round, the address is proof that maple pairs wonderfully with seasonal products all year long. If you want to organize a gastronomic evening with a Quebecois accent that is out of the ordinary, the Cabane d’à côté is definitely worth a try in the Mirabel area. The proximity to nature allows the team to use it as a pantry. The cabin offers an exceptional menu at $58, a promise of a memorable country dining experience.
restaurant lemeac montreal

Leméac

Leméac is a staple restaurant in Montreal for several reasons. For more than 15 years, the quality has been consistent, the service impeccable and the ambiance always right. Here, all elements are perfectly balanced. The French brasserie style restaurant has always served the same classics. Composed of about twenty starters and as many main courses, the house menu offers the classics of French brasserie on Laurier Avenue West. All in the spirit of eating locally, whether it is for brunch, lunch, or dinner, the chef incorporates a little Quebecois touch of maple syrup in many of his dishes.
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Patrice Pâtissier

Patrice Pâtissier is without a doubt one of the best pastry chefs in Montreal; every visit here is synonymous with decadence and sweet delights. At Patrice Pâtissier, you’re bound to fall in love with one, or many delicacies: kouign-amann, cannelées, scones, financiers, shortbread, or cookies – all pastries prepared with remarkable technique and that give delicate and sought-after flavours and textures. The house also offers seasonal fruit tarts, eclairs, black forest cakes, cream puffs or desserts in larger formats. What we like most about the products of this boutique on Notre Dame West is certainly the subtlety of the confections; the pastry chef uses maple all year round in his desserts.
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Boulangerie Merci la vie

Merci la vie is one of the best bakeries in Quebec and for good reason. The owners, nominated for the 2019 Lauriers de la gastronomie, offer a winning formula: quality products accompanied by exceptional human warmth. On the menu, you’ll find a multitude of extraordinary breads, some sweet products, hot and cold drinks and small savoury dishes. The savoury menu offers staple dishes that customers never tire of, but also seasonal creations depending on the chef’s mood. The owners are known for putting a lot of love into their bakery in order to offer the best of Quebec in every bite; which includes of course the use of maple syrup all year long.

Candide

Candide is an exceptional address and will quickly become, if it hasn’t already, an obligatory stop for those sensitive to and appreciative of the beauty of things. Especially if you like these things to be eaten, to be prepared with the best local products, by passionate people, all without damaging your wallet. We also love the way this great place is leading the way in eco-friendly restaurant practices. In everything that is sauce, coulis and seasonings, maple syrup is at the heart of the recipes.
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La Fabrique

A charming and friendly address on Saint-Denis Street, La Fabrique serves a delicious menu of comfort food that is renewed every few months and a few classics that the chef cannot afford to remove from the menu because of their success. Of the latter, one of the most memorable is the absolutely decadent dessert served year-round: homemade caramel French toast baked with maple. The chef’s cuisine reflects his background with French, Chinese and of course Quebec influences, Quebec being his homeland.
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Faux Bergers

Faux Bergers is a big favourite of Tastet in the Charlevoix region. First, the location of the restaurant, located on the grounds of the Le Migneron cheese factory, is quite exceptional. Secondly, Sylvain, Andréanne and Émile are a trio of young, dynamic and talented people who are sure to impress. While the establishment serves simple lunchtime dishes – pizzas and delicious salads – it’s at night that we recommend you visit. The establishment offers an excellent tasting menu that changes daily. Here you can taste Quebec as we like it, with beautiful local products prepared with tempting simplicity; and maple syrup, of course!

Patente et Machin

Patente et Machin is an unpretentious address that catches you off guard with a refined and comforting cuisine. Combined with very warm service, an evening at Patente et Machin is always flavourful and very entertaining. The menu, which changes almost daily, is designed with meat-eaters in mind! The slate is filled with many offerings to please all the desires of the customers. We delight in the delicious sweet and savoury recipes offered here; which are, of course, sweetened with Quebec’s maple syrup!
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