It’s that time of year again, where guilty heathens who went full yolo during the holidays crowd local cardio classes and fill their gym bags full of lies and self deceit. Working off holiday cheer is something I’m very used to, but logging distance on a treadmill isn’t my style. I burn my calories going through the past year’s *41* published Montreal restaurant reviews to find the ones that stood out the most, then compiling an extensive list of pros and cons to see which ones I found to be the best of 2014. So in no particular order, here are Shut Up and Eat’s Best of 2014.
A friend of mine once asked me for a fried rice recipe and I gave them my trusty chicken fried rice with gai lan recipe. I followed up with them the next day to see how it went and they said it was good, but something was different. They asked me what “gai lan” was and I explained to them that it was Chinese broccoli. They said that they weren’t able to find it at their local grocery store and used regular fleurette broccoli and that by using soy sauce, would rationalize it as being “Chinese“. After I stopped pounding my head against the wall, I tried to figure out if the problem was my friends or the fact that I didn’t specify where to get the ingredients… especially after I found out that their pantry soy sauce was the kosher-gluten-free variety.
Making list of the past year’s most memorable meals is like asking a parent to try and pick their favourite child… In the past year, I can safely say that I may have had more than one memorable meal that consisted of mind blasting dishes that I periodically reminisce about, recounting tastes and flavours, textures and cooking techniques like some sort of culinary Rain Man. Going back revisiting past reviews and write-ups about some of Montreal’s tastiest tables, not only led me to realize the calibre of gastronomic fortitude that this city encompasses, but the skill, passion and talent that exudes from kitchens across the island both new and old.