Think Quebec and the word maple quickly comes to mind. Our fair province’s biggest gourmet export is the delicious liquid gold that seeps out of our majestic maple trees every spring to then be turned into a wide variety of sweet maple products. It seems quite fitting, then, that maple products take centre stage for the second edition of TASTE MTL, the city’s most delicious event presented by the Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers (FPAQ) from November 1 to 11, 2013…
Montreal’s restaurant scene is huge and this year 125 restaurants are taking part in TASTE MTL. The new rule at this year’s event is to integrate a Quebec maple product into at least one of the dishes (and not just dessert!) I, for one, am a big supporter of this new twist in the game since my sweet tooth and I are big fans of maple syrup and I am looking forward to tasting the chefs’ creative ways of using this very ubiquitous product in their dishes.
What’s even more interesting is that nine of the 125 participating restaurants are considered to be Maple Masters. What is a Maple Master, you ask? They are 100 of the most carefully selected chefs, among the best in the world, who are advocates of cooking with the best local products. They always make sure that maple – one of Quebec’s tastiest local ingredient – has a special spot on their menu.
The chefs at Auberge Saint-Gabriel, Birks Café by Europea, Birsto Cocagne, Chez L’Epicier, Le Valois, Portus Calle, Restaurant Carte Blanche, Le Renoir and Restaurant Chez Ma Grosse Truie Chérie are all considered Maple Masters and will be participating in the TASTE MTL festivities. They are regarded with great esteem as they use this local ingredient with respect, tons of creativity and with incredible originality.
In Quebec, you will find Maple Masters all along the Maple Gourmet Road. This map of 25 locations in Montreal, and many more across the province, will introduce you to different ways artisans, chefs and bakers, for example, use maple syrup in their own creative and tasty ways. Have you ever tasted the maple crème brûlée ice cream at Havre-aux-glaces? Or the Maple Stone Sour cocktail at le LAB? Or the Portuguese-style pork and clam with maple restaurant at Portus Calle? I have and I can attest to the fast that they are all wonderful creations and part of the gourmet maple road that will show you how versatile – and delicious! – Quebec’s largest culinary export can be! (You can download a PDF version of the maple map here)
Use the official event’s hashtags #MTLATABLE and #TASTEMTL on Twitter and Instagram to let us know how you’re enjoying your time at TASTE MTL!
For more details on all TASTE MTL activities, the list of participating restaurants or to reserve your spots, go to tastemtl.com
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