Sometimes there is nothing better than Friday night take out, cheap wine and a good movie, or a Saturday afternoon picnic on the mountain, complete with fresh food at arms reach...so here, I am proud to present, a post on the all powerful <trumpets> take out meal.
For fresh, raw fare, try Crudessence, a veggie/vegan friendly eatery that just opened it's second location on Mackay (the original is on Rachel) last year. From their chalkboard, take your pick between organic salads (the classic "crudessence salad" is a favourite), sandwiches and seasonal mains, all of which include some of the most taste-provoking ingredients I've ever laid eyes on; coconut feta, rosemary nachos, pistachio pesto and cooked quinoa are just of few of the unusual and tasty elements that makeup this memorable menu. And, if you fall in love as much as I did with the place, you can pick up their newly released cookbook (see above) or consider taking cooking classes at their living foods academy, which offers the basics on everything from juicing, wheatgrasses and cleansing foods to the essentials of kombucha and fermentation here.
Crudessence | 2157 Rue Mackay | Montreal, QC, H3G 2J2 | (514) 664-5188 | www.crudessence.com
A favourite of mine for a few years now, I've been reluctant to share this absolute gem of a sushi spot with the world of my (probably like five total...) readers. But alas, I give in! You have been loyal, and it was for places like this that I made chic little city in the first place, so now, I bring you one of the most amazing places for take out sushi EVER....Tri Express. Owned by Tri Du (formerly the chef at Treehouse on St. Laurent) and nestled deep in plateau proper, this tiny little corner store of a restaurant seats just short of 20 and is always bustling. Whenever we go we get their chef salad, famous sushi pizza "l'inattendue", new style salmon sashimi a la Tri, and a few of his rolls. Its always incredible, especially for take out on a warm summer night, or to snuggle up at home with on a cold snowy Sunday...
Tri Express | 1650 Laurier est | Montréal, H2J 1J2 | (514) 528-5641 |
The Satay Brothers and their infamous pork buns take the cake for inducing some of the worst food cravings I've experienced since McKiernan closed and I began Johnny Cakes withdrawal. Alex and Matt Winnicki, "Brothers since 1983," opened their Atwater market stand earlier this summer with word quickly catching on that their Singaporean styled street food was the best new thing in town. Served on adorable vintage and traditional asian dishware at the Atwater market picnic benches with great music and service to match, its no wonder why this place already has a huge following. Note: if you want to try the pork buns you MUST go early, as they are often gone before the day ends. However, if you arrive too late (like me, always...), don't fret; share their Mung Bean salad with that day's satays (usually pork, beef or shrimp), and order a Laksa Lemak soup or Gado-Gado salad for a main. Note that the Laksa is super spicy yet addictive; I ordered it last weekend and it was so good that I literally could not stop eating despite physically aspirating the soup and coughing forcefully in between ravenous slurps... mildly embarrassing but delicious, none the less!
Satay Brothers | 138 Avenue Atwater | Montreal, QC H4C 2G3 | (514) 661-6983 | www.sataybrothers.com
By 2011 I had literally exhausted the discussion of how we need a Dean and Deluca style grocery store in downtown Montreal. Luckily, the subject has been put to rest with the discovery of this lovely little neighbourhood epicerie, Alexis Le Gourmand. Situated on Rue St. Jacques near de la Montagne, this gem of a grocery store is housed in an old red brick warehouse style building and has a cool, modern market feel. Specializing in gourmet pret-a-manger lunch and dinner fare that is all made on site (just take a peak to the back of the store through their glassed-in kitchen), it has become the perfect place to grab a few quick meals after work. Think bacon wrapped asparagus, mushroom and truffle risotto and coconut shrimp and vegetables, all under $10 each. While you're there, also make sure to peruse through their selection of artisanal breads (I always get two of the blue cheese baguette!), organic fruits and vegetables, and the selected fine groceries that fill their stainless steel shelves. Lastly, towards the cash, check out their selection of meats and cheeses, many of which are local and come in perfect small sizes at less than $4 each.
Alexis Le Gourmand | 1405 St Jacques | Montréal, QC, H3C1H2 | 514-935-7676
Mandy's Express is the online ordering and delivery service of Mandy's Salads, the well-known Montreal salad bar with practically a cult-following. Originally housed in the back of Mimi & Coco's Westmount store and now available at their Laurier location as well, Mandy's specializes in lunchtime gourmet salads, sandwiches and wraps to go. While I like to choose at random from their many options, I must admit their December and Westmount salads are a favourite. Healthy, delicious and easy to order (with delivery dates that can be arranged days or weeks in advance!), mandysxp.ca is a great link to have bookmarked in your browser.
Mandy's Salads | 201 Laurier ave | Montréal, QC H2T 2N9 | AND | 4927 Rue Sherbrooke Ouest, Westmount, QC H3Z 1H2 | (514) 877-9997 | www.mandysxp.ca