For the 8th year in a row, Happening Gourmand returns to Old Montreal for a month of delicious lunch and dinner specials. The specials will run for 30 days at reduced prices in a selection of restaurants in Old Montreal. Meant to promote the properties own by the Antonopoulos group, a family-run business and promoted to experienceoldmontreal.com, the group invited a group of media insiders out to kickoff the 8th edition. We pulled up a chair at Méchant Beouf to get a taste of what they will be offering and here’s how the night went.
I’m a fan of Méchant Beouf and I have been for a very long time. The atmosphere is relaxed and inviting, lined with comfortable chairs, red hues and a general pub feel, it’s the type of place that’s perfect for this time of year. The staff is engaging, courteous and above all else, knowledgeable.
For Happening Gourmand this year, the Méchant Beouf kitchen will focus on a special selection of three courses for an unbeatable price of $25. Including appetizers, entrees and desserts, the menu also features a cocktail (a peach infused cosmopolitan) dreamt up just for the very happening event.
The choice among each course is pretty vast. For the appetizers, we had the choice of a fresh trout gravlax, a stacked beet salad with goat cheese (the only thing I didn’t taste because I have no time for goats cheese but the table agreed it was delicious), a savoury merguez sausage pogo with salad and a smoky bison carpaccio. I chose the pogo (pictured above) but my favorite of the dishes was the trout gravlax.
For round 2, the choices for main course had even more diversity. Featuring a selection of lightly salted Icelandic cod, a grilled beef bavette, salmon, ribs and a burger stacked with seasoned chicken and pulled pork, there’s no shortage of food to choose from. The burger was a big hit at most of our table with several others choosing the bavette. The kitchen surprised us by sending out a dish of cod, which came seated on a bed of beluga lentils. The cod fell apart at the touch of the fork and the lentils paired excellently with the light salty taste of the fish. Though I thoroughly enjoyed my burger (it’s a big dish; come hungry), the cod was definitely my favorite.
By the time you reach the dessert portion of the evening at Happening Gourmand, you’re probably already pretty full. Méchant Boeuf wisely didn’t over do it with the desserts, instead keeping it simple with a choice between a coulis covered cheesecake or chocolate mousse and brownie. I chose the chocolate and devoured it in an instant. No trouble to it.
The 8th edition of Happening Gourmand runs from January 8th to February 8th in Old Montreal. For a complete list of participating restaurants visit the website.
A word from the wise; book your tables early. After 8 successful years the Happening Gourmand secret is a secret no more.