I’ve always joked that dim sum is almost a form of Chinese tapas – small dishes, bite-sized foods easy to share – “chapas”. I recently had the opportunity to check out a spot in Laval that is re-interpreting and re-envisioning modern Chinese cuisine and serving them tapas style. Gon Bui is a young and fun spot interpreting what Chinese tapas would be. Done by incorporating elements from other Asian cuisines to amalgamate and present something thoughtful and new. I’ll drink to that… Cheers? Santé? No, gon bui!
Cheers! Santé! Kampai! “When I say sake, you say bomb… SAKEEEEEE…” We’ve all said these things at one time or another. If you’re not Vietnamese (or drank with Vietnamese friends) I’m about to put you on to a new drinking toast. “1…2…3… Yo!” which roughly translates to “1,2,3 let’s go!” This toast is the namesake of the newly opened Vietnamese spot in Laval, 1,2,3, Dzo! A spot that is offering up legit street food eats and an authentic curb-side dining experience. Be honest, we’re all fans of street food and we’re fortunate enough in Montreal to have access to all kinds. From Japanese izakayas, to Korean indoor stalls, Chinese crepes and dumplings and Vietnamese pubs, we’re got them all, and now, we’ve got another.
I often get asked for Thai recommendations. Like an old man, I start my answers with, “Picture it, Montreal 2012… a quaint little mom and pop Thai eatery located in Little Italy. Unassuming and under the radar serving the best Pad Thai west of the Mekong…” This place closed a while ago and will forever be my golden standard by which all Thai food is compared to. They were old fashioned, unpretentious and served delicious homemade food. Since then, there have been many restaurants serving delicious Thai food. Fun places run by younger generations trying to make this cuisine cool. With spots like Thammada, Pamika, Mae Sri, and Thai Sep it’s easy to see why Thai food has become so popular.
I rarely write about restaurants off-island. But I happened to be in Laval-West and remembered someone telling me about a family run Thai/Cambodian restaurant that I should check out. Who am I to overlook a place serving spicy Southeast Asian food on one of the year’s coldest? I stopped by Lotus d’Asie to get my fix.