Thursday, December 22, 2011


I LOVE this restaurant. WE love this restaurant. My friend V, she REALLY loves this place. Her and her mom go a LOT. And it's worth it too! Although it's a tad annoying to get to when you don't have a car, it's well worth the metro and bus trip.

It's quite a small place and it's very good (did I mention that already? :p) so obviously, with that, comes lots of clients. You're pretty much guaranteed to wait at least 15 minutes when you go during dinner time, given that it's also a small place.

We went in December when it was cold outside and just being there warmed us up :) The decor is quite modern and it has a long bar for people that want to just have drinks or just for the people waiting for their tables. There was loud music playing (a TAD to loud)...Beatles and more classics like Bruce Springsteen and Aretha Franklin. 35 to 40 seats not counting the bar (about 12 seats). The only thing ruining the good vibe was un lampadère dehors that couldn't seem to decide if it was on or off. That was annoying.

I had the crispy honey ginger shrimp and the mac n' cheese (with pancetta!)--23$. Can I just mention that I LOVE shrimp and I've had them pretty much any way one can have shrimp. These were probably the best shrimp I've EVER had. I'm serious. Crispy, very tasty yumminess. Heavenly! My mac n' cheese was good too but I had had that before so I wasn't as excited about it as the shrimp!

The waitress served the wine just the way one is supposed to serve wine (well, according to ITHQ standards anyway!): she opened it with the tag on the bottle facing us, without twisting the bottle, put a bit in the taster's glass and the others clockwise and get back to the taster (of course, women are first and men, second... but we were three girls).

As for the desert, we had the 'délice d'automne' and it was just that, delicious! Panacotta pumpkin pie filling with some crumble in there... YUM!

As for paying, we had to wait a while, which was weird because there were still clients waiting at the door. You'd think she'd want us to leave so that more clients can come sit and therefore, get more tips!

So for the scores:

FOOD: 8/10
Service: 7.5 ...we did wait a tad too long to get the bill

I recommend this to anyone who wants to eat in a 'happenin' place' and eat good food and drink good wine!

ps: malheureusement, le site internet n'est pas terminé...

Monkland Tavern on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


My school peeps always go out for lunch and I'm always the one resisting either because I brought my lunch or I'm broke. This time, I made an exception :) On a rainy lunch time at ITHQ, my friends Cam, Gab and I decided to venture out onto St-Denis and find a place to eat. And we found Manana. I had been there about 2 and a half years ago but did not remember just how good the food was.

First, I must mention how 'mexican-y' it is in there! It's wonderful; it's like 'oh, wait, I've just entered Mexico!'. There are a lot of colors and pictures of Frida in a corner. It was right before noon so there were about 3 other people in this small, cute resto. I ordered the sangria--I mean who can resist?--and it was amazing! Lots of fruits and very full of alcohol... just the way I like my drinks :)

Instead of bread, they brought us some nachos with salsa, which I thought was very fun, although the salsa was not nearly as spicy as I would have liked it to be. I had the fajitas con pollo and it was very nice, savory. It came with some guacamole--I LOVE the stuff-- and it was a great addition to a classic. I enjoyed dipping my fajitas in the smooth guacamole and making satisfied noises, much to the dismay of my lunch buddies. Of course, my plate also contained rice and black beans which were also good and completed the dish well. The girls loved their meals too, although I didn't really have time to note down what they had, having only about 40 minutes to find a restaurant, order, eat and go back to school. I actually didn't have time to finish my lunch so i took it back to school in a box and ate it for dinner :)

As for the service, it was quick, but we were about 5 in the restaurant so it wasn't much of an issue. Our waitress was nice and smiley and fast. When we were paying the bill, she gave us werthers original... rapport!

For the scores:

Food: 8
Service: 8

Whoever likes Mexican food must visit this restaurant! Its authentic decor and food makes it a great experience!

Manana on Urbanspoon

Café International

We had been meaning to go there for a while and since we were walking around dans la petite Italie à la fin de l'été, we thought we should go for it! Nous nous sommes assises dehors sur la petite terasse, entourée de jardinières et de petits arbres, créant l'illusion que l'on était pas vraiment sur le trottoir! :) Nous étions entourées de gens d'affaires, en grande majorité, surtout d'italiens bien sûr! C'était drôle, I don't know if it's because I watched the Sopranos the night before but most of them looked like they were part of the mafia, speaking to each other very quietly and holding locked briefcases. But that's probably just me!

Our waitress came to our table and she was so cute and cheerful, it made us smile! She explained the menu and the table d'hôte and came back 2 minutes later with a last minute addition to the table d'hôte: a roquette, fig and caramelized onions pizza. Hello! I jumped on that :p

So this is what I had and it came with a salad (maudite mesclun!) and canollis! Ze wife had the mushroom risotto: pleurotes, potobello, huile de trufle. My pizza was really REALLY good: tasty and not overly full of crap. So good that I made some in the weeks following our visit to the restaurant. Only shitty thing was that my caramelized onions were not caramelized at all... just cooked in a pan. That was kind of a let down. I also want to mention that the bread was excellent and fluffy, extremement moelleux, just you want out of bread :) We also had some bruschetta as an entree (she brought soup at first but we were like 'giiirl, we ordered the bruschetta!) It was very well seasoned and had celery in it which was a good addition. The salad was nothing special, I hate getting mesclun in a restaurant, I don't know why but I just do. The great vinaigrette made up for it though. Ze wife's risotto was very creamy and savory and again well seasoned. And she knows her risotto! We always make some at home and this one was really good! My canollis were good but pretty hard... like too hard for canollis. Since the wife has better teeth than me, she ate most of my desert. For the prices: risotto and entree cost 17$ and my table d'hôte cost 16$. Quite reasonable.

We had great service from the start and then the waitress kind of stopped coming. We wanted water and then the bill because we were kind of in a hurry and she was nowhere to be seen! Minus 5 points! She finally passed by our table and we had to stop her and ask her for the bill.

Here are the scores:

Food: an average of 7
Service: an average of 6.5 (could have been 9 but she deserted us!)

All in all, we were quite satisfied of our Italian experience and so if you happen to walk by in little Italy, you should definitely eat there!

Cafe international on Urbanspoon