I ate Quebec City. All of it.

Alright, so there might just be a new contestant in my Favourite City in the WORLD EVER competition.

I love the French.

A few weeks ago I was invited on behalf of Wyndham to check out their new TRYP Quebec Hotel Pur located in the sexy St. Roch neighborhood of Quebec City.

There was a heavy, HEAVY emphasis on food. The French like to eat. Quelle surprise!

I was only in the city for three days, but I’m pretty sure I gained 5 lbs. The chef from Table (the hotel restaurant) literally followed us around. I’m not kidding. We show up at the art museum for a tour and he’s just chilling out flipping burgers on the grill. NBD.

Tapas Tapas Tapas

I didn’t even know what this was, but I ate it.

I especially LOVE tapas culture. Seriously, our first night’s dinner at Table turned into a 40-tapas meal extravaganza:

  • Ceviche and grapefruit vinaigrette
  • Yellow betts salad with goat cheese, apple and maple syrup vinaigrette
  • Cauliflower soup with crab, diced potatoes, and parmesan tuile
  • Shrimp and Calabrese sausage with mango coulis and coconut milk
  • Forest mushroom pot pie finished with cream in a pastry puff

  • Lamb chops with green beans, marinated in rosemary, garlic, red wine and mustard
  • Churros with chocolate and caramel sauce
  • Tiramisu

I always judge the deliciousness of my meals by how unpronounceable the menu items are.

POUTINE!

It looks like a regular fast food joint, but do not be deceived.

When in Rome, do as the Romans do and eat your friggen face off. I was told several times that Chez Ashton HAD to be on Things to Do list. Established in 1969, the venue became the original home of the poutine.

It’s always fun to watch Americans try poutine for the first time. A dish that’s so commonplace to Canadians seems horrifying to foreigners…until they try it. But Ashton’s was like an awakening for me, too.

I opted for the classics cheese curds and poutine sauce combination, although Ashton’s lets you add a whole slew of other ingredients (like green peas).

I never knew what “squeaky cheese curds” meant until that moment.

I’m returning to QC just for this

How can I return to the lazy poutine way of shredded cheese and gravy dumped on top? Get with it, Canada!

BOOZE!

The French-Canadians share one very important similarity with Newfoundlanders: we love booze. It’s sold in convenience stores, for the love of god.

On our city tour, we swung by the Marche du Vieux-Port in the Old Port. Open all year round, the market features fresh fruits, veggies, and other local products.

My group didn’t get far before we decided to try the iced apple cider wine made by the Bilodeau cidrerie. I loved the icy bite of apple so much that I bought a bottle for Cailin’s mother as an apology for drunk sleepwalking at her house the previous weekend.

Naturally, I also had to stop by Le Monde des Bieres: The World of Beers. Pretty much the only French I understood. If you’re ever there, make sure you pick up some beer from Dieu du Ciel!

In the St. Roch neighborhood, stop by for a taste platter of beer at La Korrigane brewpub. It’s only $10, and even the coffee porter is delicious.

I was neck-to-neck with another press trip member for the beer drinking competition. Everyone thought she won; little did they know the non-beer drinkers kept replacing my empty glasses with their full ones…

A FISH, A FISH, A FISHY OooOO!

Finally, although I didn’t get to actually eat here, I paid a visit to the new JEF poissonnerie. You can purchase fresh fish here, or premade dishes. The dude who runs it is young and really knows his stuff, so make sure you swing by and support a small local business.

It’s really hard to say “poissonnerie”

Plus they have log stump stools. I’m a fan.

  • April 09 2012

    This sounds like my kind of place!! =)

    • April 18 2012

      You need to come here and try poutine!

  • April 10 2012

    I am all for supporting small, local businesses. Lovvvvveeeeeee (can I emphasize more??) the log stump stools.

    :)

    • April 18 2012

      Aren’t they great?! I can’t believe I haven’t seen them used like that before!

  • April 10 2012
    Steven Richardson

    Next time you go back, go to La Barberie. Great micro-brewery, amazing beers.

    • April 18 2012

      Oooh, good to know. I shall be back.

  • April 10 2012

    Quebec City is definitely in my top ten cities of the world and Chez Ashton’s poutine is only one of a million reasons I love it so much. This blog post seriously made me consider making the 4 hour drive from Tremblant just to experience it all over again.

    • April 18 2012

      I CANNOT WAIT to experience squeaky cheese curds again! Agh.

  • April 11 2012

    Hmm…
    suddenly my Pop-Tart isn’t looking quite as luxurious.
    :)

    • April 18 2012

      Well, what kinda pop-tart is it?

  • April 11 2012

    That poutine looks amazing. You can’t go wrong with fries, gravy and cheese curds. I really need to go to Quebec.

  • April 12 2012

    I adore Quebec City – I got married there last April!

    Did you check out La Patriarche? Amazing!

    • April 18 2012

      No! What is it?!

      Ahhh, amazing setting for a wedding, I’m sure…cannot wait to go back

  • April 13 2012

    MMMM! Tapas are so good!!! I love being able to sample so many different meals all at once. :D

    • April 18 2012

      YES, that is exactly why i love it! Lol.

  • April 13 2012

    The enjoyability of a city is directly proportional to its propensity to hawk booze in convenience stores.

    Great post! Will move this city up on my places to go list.

    • April 18 2012

      Those words need to adorn my website header. Dead on.

  • April 18 2012

    Coffee Porter, I must have this.

  • May 01 2012

    Glad you enjoyed the Capital!

    Would you believe that as a Quebecker expat, poutine is actually what I miss the most from my hometown?

  • October 26 2012
    Jay

    If you ever come back to Quebec, you got to try the Tao salmon (it’s like general tao chicken, but with salmon inside… mmmm)at JEF Poissonerie. I go there regularly and it is sooooo good!

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