July 23, 2024

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7 canteens to visit during your next roadtrip in Quebec

7 canteens to visit during your next roadtrip in Quebec

In the summer, there is nothing more Quebecois than stopping at a canteen, snack bar or potato shack to regain energy on the way to vacation.

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Since these small restaurants are a symbol of summer in Quebec, here are 7 addresses that are a must-visit during your next roadtrip in the beautiful province this summer!

1. La Roulette Beauparlant – Shawinigan

Montreal and several cities in Quebec banned potato trailers in 1947, but Shawinigan, she always kept them. Thus, for more than 80 years, not a year has gone by without locals placing an order at the window of one of the town's two historic trailers, which were once pulled by a horse, offering bags of fries for a few pennies. .

In the native culture of Shawi, however, one must choose: We go to the “curly” potato trailer or the “drettes” potato trailer. Two similar options, but with different tastes: ideally, it's best to try both to determine whether you're #teamdrette or #teamfrisée.

After Fries, we walk by the rapids that border the city center and stop at La Cité de l'Nergie in Chauvinigan to enjoy a multimedia show or an exhibition about science or the history of the region. And we ended the excursion with a beer on the large terrace of the Le Trou du Diable microbrewery.

314, 5e rue de la Pointe and 712, 5e rue de la Pointe, Shawinigan

2. Le Roy Giuseppe – Drummondville

We'll never know who the Laughing Leprechaun in Warwick was Roy Joseph, in Drummondville, truly invented poutine, as versions vary. But without a doubt, Roy Joseph was one of the first places to serve this classic dish in Quebec in the 1960s, and moreover, in November 1998, the canteen registered the trademark at “Inventor of Poutine”.

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At the time, Roy Giuseppe is said to have offered to serve its fries with brown sauce. Then, some customers started asking for fresh, local cheese curds on their fries — even at the restaurant. This is how the great history of poutine began.

Today, the place still has the retro decor, and outside, you can easily see the parking lots for the drive-thru service of yesteryear.

After poutine, we'll take a trip to the Village Québécois d'Anton, a replica of a typical village from the years between 1810 and 1930, where we'll find old buildings and costumed actors telling the story of another era.

1050, Bowl. Saint-Joseph, Drummondville

3. La Cantine Bernard – Sainte-Madeleine

In Montérégie, the Cantin Bernard, once a small cabin, has been attracting customers for nearly 60 years. It is perhaps thanks to its potatoes, peeled and cut on site, and its poutine, considered by many to be the best in the region.

After poutine, we drive two minutes to La Fille du Roy farm where we pick strawberries, artichokes, ground cherries or squash depending on the season.

1400, Bowl. Laurier, Sainte-Madeleine

4. La Patate Mallet – Beauharnois

Located west of Montreal, this Canteen Started in a barn in Saint-Étienne-de-Beauharnois before settling on rue Saint-Laurent, where it still stands. Since 1956, three generations have been offering customers the specialties of this place, about which many good things have been said. Among other things, you can order popular Bread-poutsPoutine is served on a hot dog bun, perfect for takeout.

After breads, We walk along the water's edge to Beauharnois Marina and finish it all off with a beer on the terrace of La Central microbrewery.

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41, rue Saint-Laurent, Beauharnois

5. Le Casse-Croute du Pêcheur – Sept-Îles

On the North Shore, this massive lobster trap that doubles as a dining room is impossible to miss. at A fisherman's snackWe enjoy poutines, fries and burgers, but also seafood specialties such as fried squid, acras or gudilles.

After the roll, we'll take a Zodiac tour with Croisiers du Capitaine to discover the islands that gave the city its name. You can observe birds or marine mammals, go hiking and sleep on an island in the archipelago.

4, rue Maltese, Sept-Ills

6. River Iris – Saint-Sulpice

River Iris

30 minutes from Montreal, a small purple cabin catches the eye of those taking the Chemin du Roy: itRiver Iris, at Saint-Sulpice. Open since 1962, the canteen offers classics, but also Fish and chipsWe enjoy club sandwiches, rolls… on the (purple) picnic tables by the river.

After Club Sandwich, we continue following the river for about fifty kilometers to the Berthier Islands, where we can enjoy nature by bike or on foot.

472, rue Notre-Dame, Saint-Sulpice

7. We get drunk at Ben's – Grandy

Thanks to Bernard “Ben” Dubey in 1950, at the age of 19, he opened his potato trailer. 70 years later, in 112, a giant neon sign depicting a man enjoying a hot dog continues to draw crowds. Ben'sJust like in the old days, employees wear white and red striped uniforms to hand peel potatoes and serve up fries, sandwiches, poutines, hamburgers and pogos.

After Pogos, we drive five minutes to spend the afternoon at the Granby Zoo.

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599, Rue Principal, Granby

A short history of canteens

Did you say “snack”? During the weekly distribution of bread, it would become dry at the end of the week and a tool called a cracker was used to break it. Later, we started using the expression “break a crust” to talk about eating together and having a quick and basic meal. The word “snack” was born from this expression that first appeared in 1898.

Did you say “canteen”? This word comes from Italian Cantina (“cellar”, “cellar”), derived from Canto (corner, removed corner or storage room). The Larousse “Canteen” also suggests that it comes from “Canton”, which originally means “corner”, “corner”.

In Quebec, the first canteens were mobile and often located in front of factories to feed workers at lunchtime. Nutritious and filling dishes such as baked beans, and, perhaps, fries and hot dogs were served.

In the 1940s, dozens of fry trucks, sometimes pulled by horses, roamed the streets of Montreal and other cities in Quebec… until they were banned because of questionable health.

Mobile canteens, against their will, gave way to “root potatoes”. Then, thanks to the craze for cars and burgeoning tourism, they gradually found themselves on the roads where they took vacations, where they stopped with their families for a quick, inexpensive meal.

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