Our three-day tour of QC is zipping by. To our relief and surprise, it has not been difficult to find good vegetarian choices even in a place where restaurants heavily feature steak frites and it can be a challenge to find any entrée that doesn’t contain cheese or other animal protein. Baguette et Chocolat, just a short walk from our airBNB, on rue de la Fabrique, serves soy lattes, something I don’t take for granted since arriving in Québec. We took the ferry to Lévis for a sight of the old city from the water, and stopped at the Corsaire Pub on rue St Laurent. Surprisingly, along with a good beer selection, there was a vegetarian tapas plate featuring deep fried tofu, two kinds of hummous, baba ganouche, vegetarian pâté, raw vegetables and olives, eaten with toasted French bread. For dinner, we went to the Buffet de l’Antiquaire, a diner where the food and style of service reminds me of eating out in the ’70’s; they had a vegetarian black bean burger served with very hot and fresh fries and homemade coleslaw. Dinner for our last evening here was at the Restaurant Maison Marocaine; if you want to eat well as a vegan, the tabbouleh and the couscous with vegetables will leave you very satisfied – we couldn’t finish our meals. After a walk around and a listen to live music, we were ready for dessert – mango and raspberry sorbet at one of the many gelato places on rue St Jean. Even for vegetarians and vegans, Québec can be a culinary delight, living up to its good-food reputation. Not to mention that I have walked 22,000 steps a day while here, so am meeting my healthy-living activity goal hands-down!
Visiting Montreal is a culinary delight, even on a budget, even with a vegan (my daughter)when I am not. So much ethnic food, with options for vegetarian, vegan, kosher, halal and many other choices to fit any desire. After a trip to the nearest Metro grocery store, in NDG, where we picked up hummous, tortilla chips, pasta sauce, wine (a joy not yet experienced by me in Victoria, buying wine at the grocery store), and an assortment of fruits and veggies, we took a trip to vieux Montreal. In Cesar’s, we found a choice of “Healthy Meals”, aptly named, where we opted for a delicious salad of chickpea, avocado, falafel, sesame seeds, (with feta for me, without for Theresa)with a tangy vinaigrette. The server told us the concept came from feedback from customers that they would like to have healthy options, not just fried and rich food when touring the old city. Even at Brutopia, a three-level brewpub on the lively rue Crescent, we were able to choose from edamame beans and hummous and pita appies, as well as a vegetarian quesadilla – not vegan but lacto-vegetarian. We rounded off our day at Weinstein & Gavino’s with white port and the best tiramisu I have ever eaten. Again, not vegan but vegetarian. On our next field trip, we will work on vegan-specific menus, but after all we are on vacation.