During my time in Montreal, I reconnected with some of my Tribune buddies, including Theo, who blogs in fits and starts. It turns out that despite the Calgary-centric content of this blog, I do have a Montreal fanbase (Hello, Alex and [former] roommate!)
I met up with Theo and the boys on my first night in Montreal at Benelux, known for its two pints for $8.75 deal every Wednesday night. Of course, Theo asked if I was going to be visiting any restaurants for my blog while I was in Montreal. I wasn't sure because of the conference and potential plans with other friends (None of which came into fruition, sadly) but we could go somewhere for brunch, especially since he'd mentioned all these tantalizing places on the east side of downtown (where I didn't live). So, on Sunday
We arrived there at around 12:30, but the place was still bumping with brunch-goers (and I mean "bumping" - the decor and music reminded me very much of a posh lounge/club). Fortunately, the line-up moved quickly and we were given a table outside in the sunshine (while it snowed in Calgary *muahahaha*). Theo highly recommended all the juices and smoothies at Café Universel, so I ordered L'Éternité ($4.95), which is a blend of strawberry, banana, mango, yogurt, honey and cranberry. Theo and Alex ordered freshly squeezed orange juice ($2.95) and coffee ($1.60).
The menu has many sweet and savoury breakfast options, plus more lunch-oriented options like pizza, pasta and sandwiches. I ordered the Mushroom and Goat Cheese Benedict ($9.50), which came with a portion of lightly seasoned home fries and an impressively large fruit salad.
The Eggs Benedict was really good - the poached eggs, perched on top of toasted English muffin halves, had a not-too-runny centre while the mushrooms provided a richness to the dish and the goat cheese gave it a bit of creamy tang. Usually I get a little iffy about eggs benedict as sometimes hollandaise sauce can be too runny or too tangy, but this one was thick and quite mild in flavour.
I also enjoyed the variety of fruit in the fruit salad, especially after four days of eating not-ripe honeydew, cantaloupe and watermelon at the conference.
Alex had gushed about the waffles topped with strawberries, whipped cream and roasted almonds ($8.75), so that's what Theo got.
Overall, the service was pleasant and professional, though we might've confused the wait staff a little at the beginning by asking for our table in French and then conversing in English.
As we had our brunch, Theo and Alex kept on asking me whether I'd tried this or that restaurant, and often my answer was no. As a student in Montreal, I was always short on both money and time, but don't worry, I'll find excuses to go back...
3630 Rue St-Denis
Montreal QC H2X 3L7
Open Sun-Mon 7 AM-10 PM; Tues-Wed 7 AM-11 PM; Thu-Sat 7 AM-12 AM.