We preface this article by saying that the Divas don’t like poutine… we are not saying that we never like poutine but the norm is that we don’t, it just isn’t our favourite of the junky foods, but give us a good pogo any day! That being said, there are exceptions, boring gravy with cheese curds and mushy fries are meh! at best but add some foie gras, duck confit, lobster, etc and the Divas are all about trying poutine. La Poutine Week is a week long festival that is taking place in Montreal, Quebec City, Toronto and Ottawa., The premise is simple, 20-30 participating restaurants all make a poutine for 10$ or less between February 1-7, 2014. You get to eat these delightful and original poutines, that are only available during La Poutine Week, and then you vote for the best poutine in your city!
The Divas couldn’t very well eat every poutine in one week, wefeared soaring cholesterol levels, the potential of early onset diabetes and wearing a muumuu to work because none of our clothes would fit. Lucky for us, the La Poutine Week menu is available online and we chose two restaurants where the poutines sounded perfectly Diva-esque with decadent ingredients and richness.
Diva #1 and Sweet Pea were destined for a quiet girls’ night with no excessive drinking and over indulgence…weird but they were playing adult for once. They made plans to go to La Bêtise, which the Divas had been to before and out of all the poutines offered for La Poutine Week 2014, Sweet Pea was the most interested in La Bêtise, so she was convinced to go out.
We started off with a variety of cocktails to lube up Sweet Pea and ensure that she partied hard with Diva #1 late into the night. The bacon bloody Caesar with a steak spice rim was delicious and perfectly salty, the Christmas mojito with strawberries and green apple would have been a perfect summer drink as it was so refreshing, and the Hendricks gin with green apple and cucumber was delicious. Sweet Pea wasn’t sure if she wanted to go out with Diva #1 and the girls after dinner but a few cocktails helped her make the right choice.
We ordered their poutine along with a few other tapas. The lobster and bacon macpoutine was perfection except for the fact that we never tasted any of the bacon. French fries with curd cheese were topped with a lobster and bacon mac and cheese. The mac and cheese was full of flavour and though Diva #1 had hoped that the cheese curds would be more melted, the girls were nonetheless impressed. It was really good and nothing was lacking in flavour even though the bacon in the description seemed to be missing. Sweet Pea remarked that even in the bites of poutine without lobster the taste of lobster was still infused and apparent.
Of course what is a night without some oysters? We ordered the half dozen oysters which were meaty, perfect with the bloody Caesar and the saltiness of the bacon, and they came with plenty of lemon, which is how the Divas love their oysters! On a previous visit the Divas had ordered the lobster with enoki mushrooms au gratin with parmesan, it had been our favourite tapas of that night so Diva #1 ordered it with Sweet Pea and it did not disappoint. It was a lobster filled night with both the poutine and the lobster and enoki mushroom tapas that was creamy and rich. Plenty of lobster and lots of flavour!
Our last tapas was their salmon tartare with truffle oil, green apple and caviar. La Bêtise also has a salmon tartare which they call their classic and is more sushi-like and Asian inspired with a guacamole base. We saw a few martini glasses with the classic salmon tartare go by and Diva #1 suddenly wished that they had ordered both. Nevertheless, the salmon tartare with truffle oil offered a large amount of salmon piled in a martini glass with julienned green apples under the fresh fish. You can never go wrong with truffle oil for a boost of flavour.
We left La Bêtise in another famous Montreal snowstorm, in our colourful suede boots that we were convinced we would ruin, and went to Garde Manger to meet Vegan Vixen, Ms. Garde Manger and other friends who like to party hard all night long. After drinking all night at Garde Manger we were very happy to have filled ourselves up with the delicious and hearty poutine at La Bêtise. It was a great poutine and very original, so even though the Divas don’t really like poutine, the Lobster and Bacon MacPoutine at La Bêtise certainly qualifies as an exception to our rule.
It was a poutine filled weekend for Diva #1 as she had brunch plans with one of her oldest friends whom she sees all too rarely. But why brunch when she could squeeze in another poutine during this one week event? When she read the description of Lucky’s Truck’s poutine she was immediately intrigued, but where the hell were you going to find a food truck in February? So her friend was kidnapped and taken in search of this warehouse on Park Ave. that was a diner-cafeteria sort of place hosting two food trucks until the summer when they were once again free to roam the streets of Montreal. We didn’t know what to expect other than it would be in the Outremont – Plateau area and not in Ahuntsic but getting lost is sometimes part of the fun.
The place was not what we had expected but hey, it makes for a good story. They shared the counter with Zoe’s Food Truck, both trucks that the Divas had eaten at in the summer. We stuck to Lucky’s this time as we were here for La Poutine Week. We ordered La Fameuse which is their poutine with homemade crispy fries, a red wine and foie gras gravy, duck confit and balsamic caramelized onions. The gravy was decadent although there could have been more to warm up the dish that was a bit cold. The curds once again should have been melted but the duck confit was plentiful and the caramelized onions added a lot of flavour. Diva #1 preferred the poutine from La Bêtise but this one was very different and was nonetheless a fun poutine.
Diva #1 and her old friend ordered a sandwich and a burger and split them to get the full Lucky’s experience. The Mac N’ Cheese burger was the best of the two. The mac n’ cheese was deep fried with two slices of bacon and a delectable spicy mayo. The bun was fresh and the ingredients top notch. The buffalo pulled chicken sandwich was also good but the coleslaw and ranch-like sauce was okay; it was nothing phenomenal, just uneventful and boring. The sandwich and burger came with the choice of a salad or fries, we chose the salad since we had ordered poutine which came with some interesting dried fruit. It was a nice addition to a green salad and added a mix of citrus and sweet to the salad.
We left Lucky’s Truck, now diner, laughing that of course we had gotten lost, even though we thought that we knew Park Ave. up and down, we had ended up in a weird factory area near Chabanel looking for a food truck or restaurant or warehouse – ha! La Bêtise definitely had the better poutine of the two but they were both good in their own way and of course very different. That is the fun of La Poutine Week, there are so many different poutines to choose from that somehow everyone will find one that they like. So go out to La Poutine Week’s participating restaurants and try poutines, and don’t forget to vote for them so that your favourite restaurant wins! This is just one of the many reasons that being a restaurant blogger in Montreal is tons of fun.
Tagged: 6015 Saint Hubert St, 8855 Park Ave, Bar, Buffalo Pulled Chicken, Cheese Curds, Cocktails, Curds, Diner, Duck Confit, Duck Confit Poutine, Fameuse, Foie Gras Gravy, Food Truck, French Fries, Fries, Gravy, H2S 2L8, La Bêtise, La Bêtise Montreal, La Bêtise St-Hubert, La Fameuse, La Poutine Week, Lobster, Lobster and Bacon Macpoutine, Lobster Poutine, Lucky's Montreal, Lucky's Park Avenue, Lucky's Truck Montreal, Lucky’s, Lucky’s Truck, Mac n' Cheese, Mac n' Cheese Poutine, Mac N’ Cheese Burger, Macpoutine, Montreal, Montreal Restaurant, oysters, Parc-Extension, Park Avenue, Poutine, Pulled Chicken, Saint Édouard, Salmon Tartare, sandwich, St-Hubert, tapas, Tartare, Truffle Oil, Warehouse