Montréal 2016 – Café Dei Campi

One of my favourite surprise finds in Montreal was Café Dei Campi. It was one of those times instagram really paid off and connections were helpful. I posted a picture from Cafe Venosa (a vegan cat cafe) and a friend tagged one of their friends (@odilejp on IG who also happens to write a great vegan food blog in Montreal called La Végane D’à Côté.) It was our last few hours in Montreal, and we really wanted to check this spot out, so a quick hotel check out, we jumped into a car2go, and drove out to Café Dei Campi. It’s in a totally unassuming location in the Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie neighbourhood, in an industrialish block. But there is was Café Dei Campi. We were enthusiastically early, and they weren’t open yet, but I paced back and forth until they did. The Vegan Word wasn’t around anywhere, but all of the homemade baked goods and treats are vegan. They had beautiful chocolate-filled cornettos, apple tarts, pizzettes on the way, and other things coming out warm and cozy (come early, enjoy warm baked goods – my favourite.) You can choose between almond milk or soy milk for your coffee, and the latte we had was magical.…

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Montréal 2016 – Sushi Momo

We were in Montreal a few months ago before Simon was born, and visited the old location of Sushi Momo, since our visit they’ve moved to a much bigger location on Rue Saint-Denis, and so this post is just an excuse to share delicious food porn and talk about what we ate. Their original location was a cozy hole-in-the wall spot just off of St. Laurent. There was room for 15-20 people at most, and it was not the space for a large pregnant woman (me), but we went in there anyway, and I squished myself behind a small table with a comfy cushion and looked at their fabulous menu. For once I was happy I was so hungry, because everything looked awesome. The first night we tried to walk in was disappointing, because they were very busy (and we knew they were popular), and we couldn’t even wait around in hopes of a table, so we came back the next night after calling for a table (like we should have done the first time around.) (make reservations for maximum happiness) We started with bowls of flavourful miso soup and edamame. Next came the “poutine,” which was phenomenal. It had fried…

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Montreal – Cafe Venosa

So far, I’ve written about our most recent visit to Aux Vivres and Sophie Sucrée, but Café Venosa has been on my list since they first appeared. A few months ago JC and I were in Montreal, wandering around. I was still pregnant and we were taking our final vacation as just the two of us. It was nice to visit and knock off a few places on my “To Visit” list. It was March, and there was still a bit of snow on the ground. One of those stops was Cafe Venosa (of course) since it combines a few of my favourite things – vegan food, coffee, and cats. (and also wifi.) We walked in, and to the right there was a board with some of the adoptable cats. We saw a few cats wandering around, a case of sweet treats from a couple of vegan bakeries, and friendly staff waiting to take our order. They told us to take a seat and they’d be right by to grab our order. We started out with some hot drinks – I ordered a hot chocolate, JC got a soy latte. Then I got a soy latte, and JC got a hot chocolate. Then we alternated for the rest…

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Montreal – Sophie Sucrée

A few months ago we were in Montreal, gallivanting around. I was still pregnant, and we were taking our final vacation as just the two of us. It was nice to be there, and I had amassed a decent list of “To Visit” spots over the year or so since we’d last visited the city. It was March, and there was still a bit of snow on the ground. One of the newer spots on my list was Sophie Sucrée – an all vegan bakery. We decided to go there for breakfast our second morning, and it was our first experiment with using Car2Go in Montreal (which turned out great, since I was walking around with a heavy 37 week pregnant belly.) JC dropped me off in front of Sophie Sucrée, while he found parking, and I got to soak up the baked goods and the atmosphere of the space. If you’re feeling a bit more mobile than I was when we were visiting, you can catch the Metro to Station Sherbrooke. It’s only a 7-8 minute walk to the bakery. There are a few tables inside, but it’s more of a small cozy space with most of the focus…

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Montreal 2016 – Aux Vivres

As part of our pre-baby adventures we visited Montreal. I was about 37 weeks pregnant when we went, so it was a bit of a nervous trip (because going into labour in another province where people speak French, scared me a little), but it also felt like a necessary one (at least from a wanderlust perspective.) We took the Megabus down, which seemed like a good idea when I booked the tickets, but less of a good idea when I was trying to arrange myself and my belly behind the table we had reserved. It was much too crowded – live and learn. Much like some of the other cities I keep returning to, Montreal is very familiar. There is always something new, but ultimately the city still has the same energy, the same streets, the same language. I went to the University of Montreal during a pretty formative year one summer, so our visits are usually a blend of some of my old favourites and trying to visit whatever is new in town. Aux Vivres is one of my old favourites since my first time in Montreal, and it’s been incredible to watch them grow from a relatively small restaurant &…

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Montreal – The long way around. Jour Trois! (picture heavy)

One of my favourite spots in Montreal besides the Chateau at Mont Royal Park is the Botanical Gardens. Since climbing up a mountain and having trouble walking don’t mix very well, we opted for the slightly less strenuous activity, and planned to visit the Gardens. But first it was time to find Lunch! We decided to go to Le Pickup, it was enthusiastically recommended by friends, and it was so out of the way that it seemed to fit with going to the Botanic Gardens. (Which is also out of the way, but easy enough to get to.) Deppaneur Le Pickup (7032 Rue Waverly, Montreal, QC – Near De Castelnau Metro) is in the middle of a residential area (and in Le Petite Italie/Little Italy), and as one Montreal friend put it “at the outskirts of town.” I’m not really sure if it’s truly at the outskirts of town or what that means to a Montrealer, but I do know that the metro ride out  there (to De Castelnau station) took a lot longer than any of my other trips around the city have. It’s half convenience store (and hey, that’s what “deppaneur” means), half diner-style sandwich stop (I guess…

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Montreal Day Two – Aux yum.

We woke up absurdly early Saturday morning and grabbed a bite to eat from the hotel’s “continental breakfast” which to me, ends up meaning filling up on fruit juice, coffee, and peanut butter & jelly. I was told there was a possibility they had almond milk, but if they ever had any, they were all out. Zoot alors! (that means shucks) On the bright side, it gave us at least one extra reason to stop over at the Boutique Viva Vegan Store later on. I don’t know about you, but I prefer my flakes of morning oats with something (other than water or juice) on them. I planned out a little walking itinerary for the day blending a couple of stops on the Metro and a good wandering on Saint-Denis street (rue) and Saint-Laurent. Having had our fill of dry cereal, it was too early (9am!) for brunch, and most of the places we could go wouldn’t be open for another two hours. Getting out at Mont-Royal station and seeing giant green lawn chairs… well, we killed 15 minutes giggling and taking pictures on them. Walking down a dead Saint Dennis street was bizarre. It’s usually packed with people, but it…

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I’ve missed you Montreal. – Day one

We arrived in Montreal on Friday afternoon by train, at the Central Station aka Gare Centrale surrounded by the hustle and bustle of tourists and commuters. After years of pining away and planning a return visit to Montreal, this was a welcome suggestion when our trip to Edmonton fell through. On the way there I was happy to see at least one vegan friendly snack available for purchase on the train, a Gourmet Melange – Berry Symphony/Symphonie de petits fruits from La Fourmi Bionique (a Montreal granola company.) I picked up a 70g pouch for $3, which by convenience standards isn’t *that* bad for what I got. Which was a very generous portion of dark chocolate, roasted almonds, and dried berries (cranberries, strawberries, blueberries, cherries and Goji berries.) I had planned to go over to Ô Bol (800 La Gauchetière West, Montréal, QC) a vegan/vegan friendly spot in the Food Court of Place Bonaventure (because it’s super close to the Central Via Station.) But we didn’t get there in time, and it was closed. I imagine we’ll check it out right before we leave. Instead we checked into our hotel, ate expensive minibar cashews, and walked over to Crudessence (2157 Rue Mackay,…

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Montreal, Quebec – La Belle Province – Vegan Mofo: 30 days of vegan travel: Day 13

I haven’t been to Montreal in a few years, but I spent a month or so there in the summer of 2008 and remember it fondly. Had I not been in university at the time, I would have moved there. It had a vibrant nightlife and cultural community, the food and people were lovely, the parties, the weather (of course… I was there in summer!) and the festivals, just made me feel at home. Unfortunately, my ability to speak French is lacking. 7 years of schooling (two of those at the university level), and while I can understand a conversation, I don’t feel comfortable participating. Anyway. In Montreal, while the primary language is French, you can get by with English and not have much of a problem. I’d like to head over to Montreal in a few weeks, so I might make use of this little guide for myself. The vegan options are amazing and there is always something to do. Merely walking down a street can be interesting since Montreal is full of old architecture and very taleneted graffiti artists! You might occasionally get the feeling you’re in Europe (especially if you head over to Vieux-Montreal). I know I…

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…then She took a wrong turn at the cemetery and it all went uphill from there.

I think it is wonderful to be in a city that never seems to sleep. Because apparently, neither do I. Ha Ha. At first i thought the time zone change might be the problem… but the 2 hour difference between time zones is kind of minor really, I think it might be the 48 hour bus ride that has destroyed whatever sleep schedule I had developed for myself. Yesterday I went exploring within a 10km radius of the University Du Montreal, I decided to follow the large green dome I see outside my window every morning and go see what it was. It turned out to be L’Oratoire Saint-Joesph du Mont-Royal, an amazing church building atop of a hill. The distance from here to there was misleading, which I have to attribute to it’s absolutely massive size, I thought it would be much closer but it ended up being about 2km away (which, yes is rather close anyway.) It is 124m tall (408 feet) I spent about an hour there, wandering inside and outside of the church, and the surrounding parks. Really quite a beautiful place. There were so many people there, though I guess that is to be expected considering…

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