Montréal | Maison Boulud

Wednesday, April 24, 2013 0 No tags Permalink 0

Quick! Before maple season is over…

…get yourself to Montréal. 

And straight to the doors of Maison Boulud where maple comes in multiple forms. This is Maple Crémeux. Think maple cotton candy, spun to order. Maple crème fraîche, white chocolate-maple ganache, and even maple ice cream. 

While you’re there, dive into other desserts, like this Limoncello and Hazelnut creation and that wonderful Roasted Pineapple and Lilikoi pictured at top. It’s served with a giant calisson! 

I met with Pastry Chef David Jubin to chat about his newest desserts. See my post for Serious Eats. All his sweets are wonderful and bright, often edging on whimsical. 

Of course, there is always room for Chocolate Coulant. But instead of oozing liquid chocolate, this one surprises with silky salted butter caramel. Oh my!

Comes with caramelized milk ice cream too ;)

Maison Boulud Montréal

1228 Sherbrooke Street W, Montreal, QC H3G 1H6, Canada

+1 514-842-4212

Ritz-Carlton Montréal

Friday, April 12, 2013 0 No tags Permalink 0

A quick look inside the newly renovated

Ritz-Carlton Montreal

.

The hotel was closed four years for a complete gut renovation.

It was the first ever (how cool is that?) Ritz-Carlton in the world.

Don’t get this confused with Ritz Paris, London, and Madrid which are not technically part of the Ritz-Carlton family.

In each room is a piece of original furniture from when the hotel opened in 1912. I had this pink chair and a lacquered desk in my room.

My favorite part of staying at a hotel is (don’t laugh!)…the bathrobe. At one point I collected hotel bathrobes but they took up too much closet space.

Here’s what to do: clear out your entire afternoon. Put on the kettle, set up the tea tray (they serve Kusmi). Then prepare a bubble bath, put on some music and relax.

After you dry off and put on that bathrobe, cozy here with the

Heated pool is on the roof…wish I brought my swimsuit.

But that just means more time for breakfast at

Maison Boulud

downstairs. Grapefruit juice and ham. Hot tea and fruit.

And don’t forget about

From the roof you can see the next-door 

Residences at The Ritz-Carlton Montreal

. 45 units in total, they’re still working on construction.

And just because.

Chocolate lions, an emblem of Ritz-Carlton. This little guy is 70% dark ^_^

Afternoon Tea at Ritz-Carlton Montréal

Wednesday, April 10, 2013 1 No tags Permalink 0

Another week, another afternoon tea ^_^

Ritz-Carlton Montréal recently reopened after four-year gut renovation. And with this reopening came a new afternoon tea service…

…which served in the Palm Court, right off the lobby.

The doors in the top picture lead to the grand ballroom (wish I took a photo for you, it looks like a dream straight out of Ladurée). But back to tea! Start with champagne.

My favorite table is on the left center of the room. Plush chairs and a warm fireplace. Afternoon tea for two. Scones on top, savories in the middle, sweets on the bottom.

Nine teas on the menu ranging from Darjeeling to Sencha. And two house blends:

 – Folie Marocaine – Ceylon and Assam with mint

 – Épices de Marché – Ceylon with cinnamon and orange peels

Ready for tea sandwiches? I love how each is cut into perfect, clean rounds.

We’ll start with classic cucumber and cream cheese on white bread…

…then the smoked salmon roses (!) with caviar tucked in the middle. Served with whipped dill cream cheese on pumpernickel.

Finishing with foie gras and a bit of salt on pain d’épices.

Get to the scones while they’re still warm. One plain and one with raisins.

These come with clotted cream, housemade strawberry jam, and rose petal preserves. See them all in the fourth photo from top. Of course we ate all the rose petal preserves.

And finally, sweets. Such detail!

Clockwise from top:

 – Baba au Rhum

 – Caramel Éclair

 – Opera Cake

 – Tarte Tatin (with the caramelized apples in a tiny dice)

 – Religieuse (vanilla bean filling)

 – Mille-Feuille

May every Friday afternoon be this lovely.

Till next time ^_^

Ritz-Carlton Montréal

1228 Sherbrooke St W, Montreal, QC H3G 1H6, Canada

+1 514-842-4212

Montréal | Tea at Camellia Sinensis and Ming Tao Xuan

Tuesday, April 9, 2013 1 No tags Permalink 0

When I visit a different city, finding all the notable tea, sweets, hotels, and afternoon tea spots are at the top of my priority list. Other stuff (real food! culture! shopping!) get in there somehow, but it’s these things that get me really excited.

We have many afternoon tea spots in NYC. But when it comes to places where we can sit and get 

just

 tea, there are not many options. Cha-An is the only one I can think of. But in Montréal there’s not only one but two (and likely more!)

just

tea spots.

If you’re only going to visit one, make it Camellia Sinensis. They have three locations – go to the tea house on Rue Émery.

The tea menu is extensive, and after you order they ask if you want to prepare the tea yourself or have them prepare it for you. So nice to have this option (aka one more thing NYC should adopt ;) April had her

Bai Hao Yin Zhen

 prepared…

…while I asked to prepare my own order of the 

Pu Er 1992 Menghai

. One…

…two…

…three. Just look at that liquor, ahhh ^_^

And then if you have time, visit Ming Tao Xuan.

This place is a bit touristy with knick-knacks crammed in every corner.

But the owners are nice and there’s nothing like spending Sunday morning…

…with a book and Dong Ding Oolong.

One to smell (

闻香杯)

, one to drink.

Camellia Sinensis

351 Rue Émery, Montréal, QC H2X 1J2, Canada

+1 514-286-4002

Ming Tao Xuan

451 Rue Saint Sulpice, Montréal, QC H2Y 2V8, Canada

+1 514-845-9448

Montréal | Marché Jean-Talon, Olivier Potier, Le Gros Jambon

Monday, April 8, 2013 3comments No tags Permalink 0

Three edible stops on a very fun Montreal weekend with April ^-^

I. Le Gros Jambon

A “diner” in Old Montréal…

…where mac and cheese is topped with duck confit…

…and the poutine, rich with truffled gravy with crisp fries, is so good…

…we each had to get our own. One large, one small.

II. Pâtisserie Olivier Potier

…on Sherbrooke Street, just a few blocks from the Ritz. We couldn’t decide on just one treat, so shared a bunch.

Flaky croissants aux amandes…

…and sugar-dusted gaufres hot from the iron. With chantilly, strawberry jam…

…and whipped butter.

Chaussons aux pommes…

…the buttery pastry baked golden and stuffed with apples.

And because it was April’s birthday, a perfect St. Honoré of lychee et framboise.

(Remember the

Rose-Framboise version

from Ladurée?)

III. Marché Jean-Talon

Straight to 

La Moutonnière

…for a wedge of oozy sheep’s milk cheese.

Found sesame saratele crackers…

…to smother, and smother. Look at that texture!

Next, porc effiloché tacos…

…with a smear of puréed black beans tucked under the pulled pork. Pickled onions and hot sauce to finish.

For dessert, April had oysters from Poissonnerie Aqua Mare…

…one of each.

And I went with salted caramel gelato at Havre aux Glaces.

No room for maple syrup on ice, but that just means we’ll have to make a return trip.

And a bonus! Dinner at Kitchen Galerie Poisson. Don and I visited 

Marché Jean-Talon

7070 Avenue Henri Julien, Montreal, QC H2S 3S3, Canada

+1 514-277-1588

Olivier Potier

1490 Sherbrooke St, W Montreal, QC H3G 2S8, Canada

+1 438-381-6111

Le Gros Jambon

286 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest, Montreal, QC H2Y 1T6, Canada

+1 514-508-3872

Kitchen Galerie Poisson

399 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest, Montréal, QC H2Y 1T9, Canada

+1 514-439-6886