Montreal, Quebec takes their pastry (patisserie) shops very seriously. Every time I visit this lovely Canadian city I feel as though I am transported to a tantalizing European city. Old Montreal in particular is very charming and with that charm comes some of the best French pastries I’ve tasted outside of Paris. I have put together a list of a few of my personal favourite spots to visit in order to satisfy my never ending sweet tooth. And so, in no particular order…
Bar a Beurre – 350 Rue Notre-Dame E
This adorable little cafe and bakery will immediately win you over based on the adorable store front window alone. That’s what peeked my interest and had me enter this cafe in the first place. I noticed that they specialize in a modern take on the classic Italian Pesche Dolci cookies that I happen to love. They have many flavour variations which they refer to as ‘Boule de Beurre’ ranging from your classic filled with pastry cream, to a Birthday Cake flavour, and so on. My personal favourite is the Nonno Carlo version which is filled with ricotta, marsala and coffee. If you prefer something more traditional, the croissants as well as the pain au chocolat are also delicious paired with a late or cappuccino. The owner is very sweet and welcoming which only adds to the over all experience. I would definitely check this cafe out!
Maison Christian Faure – 355 Place Royale
This Patisserie is a must when in Montreal! I wish I had discovered this place ages ago as it’s definitely a new favourite of mine. You can dine in the spacious cafe or take your treats to go. The best way to experience this pastry shop is to sit inside, order a tea or coffee and ask to see the pastries. The waiter or waitress will then bring you a tray of every delectable pastry they have and explain each one to you. This experience had a dessert lover like me feel like I was in heaven. You can of course order their delicious almond croissants (the best I’ve had), macarons, brioche, as well as many other pastries, but these exceptionally made desserts called to me and I just had to try some. My boyfriend and I ordered two each, with a delicious almond tea, and they were absolute heaven! The tart with raspberry, white chocolate and a rose cream was my absolute favourite! I would move to this city just to eat here for breakfast every day! Well done Christian Faure! This French pastry shop is a MUST.
Olive & Gourmando – 351 Rue Saint-Paul O
This always-busy cafe is quite difficult to get a seat in. In fact, I’ve always had to take my pastries to go. Aside from their exceptionally delicious breakfast sandwiches, they offer a delicious array of pastries. If you want some delicious goodies to go, I suggest walking in, ordering from the pastries that are beautifully displayed right in front of you, and munching as you walk along charming Old Montreal. One of my favourite things to get when I go there, (I usually order 2 or 3 of them to bring home with me as well) are their gigantic chocolate cookies. They are a chocolate lovers dream cookie, especially the double chocolate variety. They have many delicious pastry options, as well as many Brioche options – the strawberry cheesecake brioche was my favourite!
Mamie Clafoutis – 3660, Rue Saint-Denis (as well as other locations)
This boulangerie and pastry shop is a truly great way to experience classic French pastries. This specific location has a really cute upstairs area where you can relax in while munching on all those delicious pastries. The pastries were so good that after ordering a wide range of goodies, I couldn’t help myself and just had to go for a round #2! They have various cakes, tarts, croissants, and cookies just to name a few. I remember eating some really delicious chocolate croissants as well as various fruit tarts. As a pistachio lover one of the pastries that really stood out was the pistachio and cranberry bar (I hear they also have a pistachio filled croissant, which I have yet to see). The variety of desserts is just too tempting to resist so try to come here on an empty stomach, as you will not be leaving that way!
Juliette et Chocolat – 1615 Rue Saint-Denis (as well as other locations)
This cafe is a chocolate lovers dream destination that specializes in various types of chocolate based desserts. This specific location is quite large and offers endless options of pastries, brownies, and even tempting chocolate drinks. If you are not afraid of a chocolate over-dose you must try their hot chocolate! This is not your typical hot chocolate as it is exceptionally thick and creamy, topped with whipped cream, and it comes in various flavours such as nutella and caramel to name a few (I wish I had a picture). If you still have room for chocolate after the drinks, you need to try their brownies! They are the most rich and fudgy brownies you will ever try and they also come in many variations. If you are thinking of dining in, try one of their waffles or crepes (and take the brownie to go). With endless options this cafe is truly chocolate heaven!
Point G – 1266 Avenue du Mont-Royal E
Last but not least… This specific pastry shop specializes in macarons! Macarons are one of my absolute favourite treats. This place is definetly a take to-go location. You will want to get at least 6 macarons to take with you and eat later (but not too much later). I must say, macarons can get quite expensive and for such a costly little treat these macarons were exceptionally priced. 12 of them were just $20 which is excellent as it is easy to spend that much on just half the amount. A macaron must be soft with only a slightly crisp exterior. These were definitely delicious, and coming from a bit of a macaron snob like myself that is saying a lot. The chocolate flavoured macaron was definitely my favourite as the texture was spot on what a macaron should be (it was melt in your mouth delicious)! Definitely a must-visit shop for the macaron lover!
… So there you have it! Montreal is filled with countless delicious pastry shops, and these just happen to be a few of my personal favourites! I hope you enjoyed this blog, and feel free to let me know of your favourites as well, that way I can check them out the next time I visit this beautiful city. – Lisa