Poutine Wars in Montreal

The moment and exact location of its creation may be lost in time and subject to hot dispute, but pretty much everyone agrees that poutine arose in small-town Quebec sometime in the 1950s. Since then, the simple but endlessly variable concoction of fresh, hot french fries, cheese curds and gravy has provided warmth and comfort to many a boozy late-night reveler. Some of our favourite spots.

La Banquise
This 24-hour diner is wildly popular, especially after last call, when it’s crowded with intoxicated, french-fry-crazed bar-goers. A truly extensive list of poutines includes the Kamikaze (merguez, hot peppers and Tabasco), the Elvis (minced meat, peppers and mushrooms) and the Hot Dog (guess). 994 Rachel St. E., (514) 525-2415.

Patati Patata
A classy variation served in a fried-potato bird’s nest and with a wine-based gravy. A subtle, but delicious take on the classic. 4177 St-Laurent Blvd., (514) 844-0216.

Fameux
A diner stalwart with comfy booths and windows looking onto Mont Royal, Fameux offers up a classic poutine and – and this is the reason it’s making this list – a tasty baked version. It’s like the lasagna of poutines! 4500 St-Denis St., (514) 845-8732.

Montreal Pool Room
Decidedly old-school, the Montreal Pool Room is a nearly 100-year-old institution on downtown’s last really sleazy block; enjoy its ambiance and its poutine, made with fresh, thick fries and a thin gravy, while you can. 1200 St-Laurent Blvd., (514) 396-0460.

Au Pied de Cochon
The deep-pocketed decadent’s choice, APDC’s famous poutine is topped with a slab of rich, seared foie gras. 536 Duluth Ave. E., (514) 281-1114.

Image courtesy of Joe Shlabotnik on Flickr.

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