Every year just as winter begins to ease up, the sap starts flowing and people begin heading out to get their maple fix at various cabane a sucres/sugar shacks outside of the city. Back in the day, the only way people would get their maple syrup addiction fed was to head out of town and hit up a sugar shack. Normally people would associate sugar shacks with very simple/traditional meals. The standard lineup at most sugar shacks include baked beans, eggs, mini sausages, potatoes, pork rinds, beets, and loads of maple syrup, in almost every dish. Pretty much basic dishes that haven’t changed or evolved in years. Things started to change when Martin Picard’s Pied de Cochon cabane a sucre made waves by taking these traditional dishes and making them fancy, combining them with modern dishes while keeping you full and having a steady supply of maple. They did such a good job that people started getting inspired and lots of places started looking at bringing this cabane a sucre experience into the city and having fun with these traditional dishes. (more…)
The Sparrow Kitchen Staff Take Flight
By: Bhavna Patel
It’s been a regular week-end brunch joint for many Montrealers – be it for their unique English-themed menu or the trendy ambience. As the weeks pass though, many foodies are coming to the disappointing realisation that brunch is no longer being served at The Sparrow. “I’m not happy to hear about the news,” says Sandy Branco De Sousa, a frequent visitor to the gastro-pub, “they offered a variety of great dishes you normally wouldn’t find in other brunch spots.”
Open for the past 18 months, restaurant manager Ethan Wills admits the restaurant was doing well. “Lunch-time seats would fill up with local nearby residents, but when it came time for brunch, people from all over the city were showing up,” he says. Yet, The Sparrow ended its brunch service on Sunday, November 14. The five-member kitchen team, head chef and manager are all moving on. Having become an established Mile-End brunch spot, the question on many minds is – what happened and where to go for brunch next?
2009 A year in Brunch
Well, Ladies and Gents, it has been a busy and tasty year with many new places that have been reviewed. In fact, we almost did 50 reviews: some were great and some were awful (which I consider those to be my public service announcements/paying for transgressions in a past life). So, in keeping with last years “Best Of 2008” posting, I feel it is fair to see what 2009 brought us. I kept most of the same categories from last year but felt that adding some new ones would be interesting. As always, if you feel that I have missed a place that you really like feel free to contact me by clicking on the contact tab up top.
The Sparrow – A place so nice I went there twice
Brunch has changed please see our new post article
The sparrow has got to be one of the places with the most buzz. I have gotten emails about it as well as read various forum postings raving about this place. Unfortunately, I’m slow to getting around to places especially since the places I get to see are scheduled a month in advance. Even though I may not be the first one to write about this place I can still feel good knowing that it is still an undiscovered gem to many others. Situated on St Laurent street south of St Viateur, The sparrow stands where the old Mile End bar used to be. Its name takes inspiration from the bird which is not native to North America but rather brought over from England and that is a great way to describe this gem of a place. Originally intended to be a bar with food, the liquor license took a long time to get so upon meeting a chef from England they decided to start focusing on food, and with just a tiny kitchen, have been pumping out amazing food that draws inspiration from England pub style cuisine mixed with Montreal’s unique brunch flair.