Day 1 of my weekend with Le Parcours Gourmand was filled with some exciting food and wine stops in Quebec City and its surroundings. Day 2, however, would almost end up being too much to handle! Read on my friends but be warned that this post will probably make you hungry.
Day two started with my favourite spot of the whole weekend: Le Fournil du Trait-Carré, the cutest little pastry and bread making shop ever, complete with cute owners with a cute story: Boy meets girl, boy and girl live in Montreal and work in ad agencies. Boy and girl decide they need a change and want to follow their passion, which means moving to Paris and signing up for pastry school for him. They live the Parisian dream for a couple of years before they decide to move back to Quebec to open this lovely shop. Hollywood story, you say? Yes! Especially after you taste their breads (the Mouna brioche is a must!)! We picked up a few loaves and headed east towards L’Ange-Gardien and the Comte de Roussy farm to enjoy our breakfast with a view, and a few new friends of the furry kind.
The Comte de Roussy farm has been in the same family for 11 generations. They produce an array of fruits and vegetables which you can buy at their store, as well as homemade jams, preserves and pies. But what I loved most about this spot was meeting all the furry friends roaming around the land: goats, cows, sheep, rabbits all midgets and all there just for you to pet and feed. The view from the store’s balcony is magnificent and we sat there and enjoyed our breads and pastries from Le Fournil along with some jams from Le Comte de Roussy.
I may have uttered the wish to go grape harvesting at some point on Day 1 because the universe listened to me and that’s what was waiting for us at the third stop of the day, the Domaine l’Ange-Gardien, along with a visit to the wine facilities and a tasting, of course! Good thing it was followed by some more food tasting at BIOFerme des Caps in St-Tite-des-Caps where the passionate owner runs an artisanal lacto-fermentation facility. Her knowledge about food is immense and it was a pleasure to listen to her talk and tell stories of her family’s struggle with food restrictions that have led her down this path she now finds herself on. I couldn’t help wondering how many passionate food artisans where out there in this huge province of ours, doing their thing, soldiering on, cooking and sharing the fruit of their labours with their close neighbours… How many of these artisans were we missing out on?
Lunch on day 2 was provided by Baker Inn. The little bouchées were exquisite and their famous sugar pie was one of the best I’ve had. After our light lunch, we continued our tour towards L’île d’Orléans and the Cassis Monna & Daughters blackcurrant harvesting and manufacturing facilities. This was another favourite stops for me since I already knew and liked the Cassis Monna products. It was nice to tour the plant and learn more about their delicious blackcurrant wines and liqueurs.
It was almost sunset by then and the perfect spot to end this beautiful day on the road was the Isle de Bacchus vineyards on Île d’Orléans. We were led inside a traditional Innu tent where we sat on 2 layers of pine needles which acted as great insulation from the cold damp ground and a wonderful air freshener. We tasted some traditionally (native) cooked fish with the Isle de Bacchus wines. It was such a magical moment to be in this tent, with an Innu man telling us stories of his family and tribe and cooking for us using the same techniques his ancestors had.
Believe it or not, there was more food to be had that night when we arrived in Old Quebec city. I have no idea how I found the room to fit it all but after a quick check-in at Hotel Champlain and a horse-carriage tour of Old Quebec, we ended the day at Le Patriarche, one of Quebec City’s most illustrious restaurants, where we dined in style.
Winter will be coming soon and the season is almost over but I hope that these photos have piqued your interest and that you will keep all of these amazing Le Parcours Gourmand food artisans in mind for your next trip around Quebec. What I enjoyed most about my weekend was realizing just how many passionate people there were out there. Discovering them, listening to their stories and then tasting their products gives a whole new meaning to the term “eating local”…
People, spots & activities I fell in love with on Day 2:
- The most adorable and delicious pastry shop Le Fournil du Trait-Carré in Quebec.
- The grounds and unique blackcurrant harvesting and manufacturing facilities of Cassis Mona & Daughters on Île d’Orléans.
- That magical hour sitting on pine branches in a traditional Innu tent at the Isle de Bacchus vineyards.
To get an idea of our tour, check out the Google map I made with all the different stops of our weekend.
Le Parcours Gourmand does not provide transport but is more of a portal allowing you to discover some delicious stops on your visit to the Portneuf, Côte-de-Beaupré, Îles d’Orléans, Jacques Cartier and Charlevoix areas of Quebec. It also allows you to map out your gourmet route using their interactive map. Most of the businesses and artisans we stopped at will give free tours as well as tastings of their products. Please call ahead and let them know you’re coming. Also note that most of these businesses are closed in the winter.