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, Montreal, QC) for dinner. I’ve been looking forward to trying their creations, and it was hard to decide on what to order. Really hard. I opted for something off of their seasonal menu, and picked up the tourte aux epinards (kind of like a spinach tart/pie). It was a cashew and tomato mousse, garnished with mushrooms, and spinach, paired with a pousse pousse salad. It was not at all what I expected, and there was nothing solid in the entire tourte, so it wasn’t my kind of dish. I think my favourite part was (unexpectedly) the pousse pousse salad. Sprouted lentils on top of bean sprouts and sunflower sprouts.
My lovely dining companion started with a bowl of Miso soup, which was possibly the best miso soup I’ve ever had, raw or otherwise. Sliced mushrooms, seaweed and scallions floated around in unexpectedly warm miso broth.
He also ordered the Mushroom canellonis, which sounded delicious, but ended up in the same category as my tourte, rich and flavourful, but not something I’d be interested in ordering again. I thought the dehydrated squash and red pepper”cannelloni” was lovely, but I was feeling pretty indifferent to the filling. Presentation was beautiful.
As an entree I stole bites of his pad thai, it was one of the specials of the day, and if you have the opportunity to visit Crudessence on a day where they are serving this dish…get it. It was spicy, bursting with a sweet nutty flavour and loaded with veggies. I used the left over dressing from the pad thai plate to spice up my pousse pousse salad, and fought internally about whether there truely is “always room for dessert”.
The old saying won out, and we ordered a dessert discovery plate. Little bites of some of their cakes. A cube of green tea /chocolate fondant/truffle, ice cream surrounded with a raspberry coulis, a sliver of the most heavenly tiramisu, rich brownie and sweet and sour lime pie with a heavy coconut flake crust, covered in poppy seeds. Hands down, my favourite item on this plate was the tiramisu. The lime pie and brownie were mostly tied when it came to what was next in line. The matcha dusted truffle was overwhelmingly chocolatey (which makes sense for a raw cocoa dessert) but was too rich for my blood.
Tomorrow morning seems to be the perfect day to head over to Aux Vivres for brunch (or just one of those amazing BLT sandwiches). It’s been too long since I last paid them a visit. Au revoir for now!