October 24th, 2008
Your boss is getting on your last nerve and you’re ready to tear your hair out.
Spare your locks and blow off that nine-to-five steam with a post-work drink at the Lab Cocktail Counter. Sidle up to the gorgeous 23-foot bar and spill your woes to the Labtender (dapperly dressed in silk tie and black vest).
He’ll gladly whip up a five-star concoction made from fresh ingredients like basil leaves and mango puree. Whether you indulge in the tangy Balsamic Berry Martini ($8.50) or fall for the Love Potion ($7.50) blended with lavender syrup, these cocktails will definitely put the smile back on your face.
Lab Cocktail Counter, 1351 Rachel St. East, 514-544-1333.
October 22nd, 2008
There’s really no shame in dancing to Duran Duran in your kitchen at 1 a.m., but why waste your moves on an empty room?
Put on your party shoes and head to the historic Cabaret La Tulipe where Saturday nights are geared to sounds of the ’80s (from David Bowie to Bananarama), while Thursdays are devoted to ’90s tunes by Jean Leloup, Nirvana, and Ace of Base.
Our personal fave is the monthly C’est Extra event devoted to French and Quebec pop hits of the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s.
Then, when you’re hungry like the wolf at 3 a.m., head around the corner to La Belle Provence for poutine.
Cabaret La Tulipe, 4530 Papineau Ave., 514-529-5000, www.latulipe.ca
October 4th, 2008
Mentioning the word cafeteria conjures up images of burnt toast, powdered eggs and teenaged angst. But mention La Cantine and you enter a whole new culinary world.
We’re stopping into this funky retro bistro on weekday mornings for a quick grilled cheese sandwich with aged cheddar, nut bread and fresh apple slices ($6). On the weekends, we prefer to lounge over the Ultra Chocolat. A sweet-tooth’s dream, this dish features French Toast-style chocolate croissant filled with slices of banana and topped with dark chocolate syrup, whipped cream and fresh fruit ($12.95).
It’s always nice to start your day on a (sugar) high.
La Cantine, 212 Mont-Royal Ave. E., Montreal, 514-750-9800, www.lacantine.ca
October 1st, 2008
This week we’re clearing our schedules and taking to the night for Pop Montreal. Seven years in, this edgy-but-lovable fest makes use of charming venues (churches and social clubs) and offers an eclectic pairing of musical genres.
Our top pics include performances by Burt Bacharach, French synthesizer-and-drums duo Zombie Zombie, and experimental group Interceiving. We’re also jonesing for the Film Pop screening of Patricia Chica and Mike Wafer’s Rockabilly 514, about a Montreal sub-culture influenced by music from the 1950s.
Tired of cabbing it from venue to venue? Rent a bike and you’ll be Speedy Gonzales on two-wheels ($50/week).
Pop Montreal, October 1-5, www.popmontreal.com
September 30th, 2008
There’s nothing more daunting than finding an original present for the gal who has everything.
We’re stocking up on goodies at Angela MacKenzie’s new eye-catching boutique. Honey Flower is a treasure trove of unique and locally-produced gifts like silk scarf pillows, vases made from fallen wood, and organic cotton stuffed animals. Her beeswax vintage teacup candles will brighten up anyone’s mood ($20), while flax seed and lavender-filled eye pillows are the perfect way to decompress after a long and weary day ($18).
Angela has also expanded her line of natural skincare products to include bath bombs and salts in such sassy scents as Mojito and Flower Candy.
Hmm, perhaps it’s us that need the pressie.
Honey Flower, 54 Duluth St. E., 514-886-5586, www.honeyflower.ca
September 29th, 2008
Don’t worry, we haven’t left marks on our new Rodarte frock, but we have developed a steamy new morning routine.
Lush’s Emotibombs are aromatherapy blocks that dissolve at the bottom of your shower, sending off sweet-smelling wafts to suit your morning mood. Ease anxiety with juniper berry and ginger (aptly named ‘Sex in the Shower’) or fight fatigue with Up You Get’s lemon, lime and grapefruit. ($3.95 each).
Afterwards, pop a Vitamin E, C or T Tree Toner Tab into a sink of hot water, wrap your head in a towel and let the steam soften your skin ($1.50 each).
You’ll be clean as a whistle.
Lush, 4067 St-Denis St., 514-849-5333, www.lush.ca
September 27th, 2008
Put down that cupcake! There’s a new dessert in town and it’s making us swoon….
The freshly-baked La Maison du Macaron is serving up macaroons in a variety of lip-smacking flavours. Made by Parisian pastry chefs Johan and Gaëlle Crop, these melt-in-your-mouth meringues are guaranteed to satisfy your sweet tooth with traditional flavours like lemon and blueberry, and more inventive ones like chocolate passion fruit.
You could opt for a box of six ($8), but we think the box of 24 ($30) is much more fun. Betcha can’t eat just one!
La Maison du Macaron, 4479 De La Roche St., 514-759-9290, www.lamaisondumacaron.com
September 20th, 2008
You’re longing for a fall picnic at Parc Lafontaine, but who wants to waste a sunny minute rummaging through the fridge for food?
Make a stop at Monsieur Pinchot where $10 will net you a sandwich on fresh crusty baguette, your choice of dessert pastry, and refreshing lemonade. This charming boulangerie also features a wide array of decadent cheeses, just-baked breads, artisan pizzas and almond paste-filled croissants that are perfect for enjoying in the great outdoors.
Just don’t forget to bring a pillow for that post-feast nap by the pond.
Boulangerie Monsieur Pinchot, 4354 Brébeuf, Montreal, 514-522-7192.
September 18th, 2008
The city’s first burlesque revival troupe gives cheeky-but-tasteful performances in lace corsets, vintage suits, long gloves and feather boas. But this isn’t just bump-and-grind; the dancers (men and women) combine traditional vaudeville theatre with 1940s music and elaborate sets.
If you’re truly moved, sign up for a six-week burlesque workshop with Blue Light founder Mlle Oui Oui.
Watch your back, Dita Von Teese!
Blue Light Burlesque Live ($20), 8 p.m., Sept 24, Oct 15, November 13, December 10 at Le Petit Campus, 57 Prince Arthur East, www.bluelightburlesque.com
August 30th, 2008
Routine might have its merits, but let’s face it, you’ve fallen into a vodka tonic rut.
Shake things up with a visit to La Distillerie No. 2. Phil Haman’s mixology bar is guaranteed to bring your taste buds back to life thanks to skilled bartenders working magic with their muddlers. Take the exotic route with a tart Asian pear martini, or get your daily allotment of Vitamin C in a mason jar filled with a sweet raspberry mojito.
Not matter what you choose, these drinks are guaranteed to turn your vodka habit on its head. But not you, we hope.
La Distillerie No. 2, 2047 Mount-Royal E., 514-523-8166, www.pubdistillerie.com