Japanese brunch at Café Falco

Last Saturday I discovered the amazing universe of Café Falco. I had heard about this place from David Nathan, a journalist friend of mine and have been wanting to visit but they only serve their Japanese brunch on Saturdays. I finally had the chance to visit this week-end and I absolutely loved it! The food is simple yet good but it was the atmosphere I fell in love with. It reminded me a bit of De farine et d’eau fraîche in the sense that I felt as if I was entering a unique universe.

Café Falco is an industrial looking space filled with unique objects, some new, some recycled. The vintage sewing machine tables, complete with intact vintage sewing machines, make a perfect backdrop under shades with original illustrations. You can take a seat on the leather couch, on a drafting stool along the communal table or you can stand in front of the open counter like I did and watch (with fascination) as your siphon coffee is made. The process is absolutely fascinating and the counter crowded with glass siphons looks like some crazy science lab resulting in a great cup of joe that tastes stronger than a filter coffee but milder than en espresso.

Frederik Froument and Yuko Toda are the owners of this gem and Yuko’s Japanese origins the inspiration behind the menu at Café Falco. The Japanese brunch consists of a bowl of miso soup, a salad and a stir fry with your choice of chicken, pork or tofu. It is accompanied by tea or coffee and orange juice and ends with a mini matcha and chocolate chip cupcake. I also couldn’t resist having one of the pain au chocolat from Boulangerie Guillaume on sale there.

If you’re ever in the area, I strongly suggest you stop by for lunch, brunch or simply one fascinating cup of siphon coffee and just linger…

Café Falco
5605 de Gaspé
514 272 7766

Tuesday-Friday 9am-5pm
Saturday 10am-4pm

Nuevo Latino brunch at Madre

Last night I was supposed to spend the evening at Raza, one of Mario Navarrete Jr's restaurants, to taste and to learn how to make some of his delicate Nuevo Latino dishes. The event was canceled due to the many inches of snow we got for the last couple of days so instead, I decided to share my brunch experience at Madre, one of his other restaurants.

It is no secret that Nuevo Latino cuisine is one I particularly like and that Madre is one of my favourite restaurants in Montreal. I have had some amazing culinary experiences there, especially when it comes to the ceviche and sweet potato bread pudding. I had been wanting to try their brunches and so on a beautiful winter Sunday a few days ago, I drove to the other side of town for a different kind of breakfast. I wasn’t disappointed!

The meal started with some of the warm homemade sweet potato bread that I love so much and that has become a signature at Mario’s restaurants. I then ordered the poached eggs & chorizo bubbles with caramelized onions on toasted bread. I must admit that there were what I thought as too many chorizo “bubbles” on my plate (and how do they stay “bubbly” for so long?). It was hard to see the food underneath but once I dug in, everything was excellent! The eggs were cooked to perfection and the chorizo slices were some of the best I’ve ever tasted. 

Poached eggs & chorizo bubbles with caramelized onions on toasted bread

My brunch companion went for the corn cakes with pork shoulder, sunny side up egg, patatas bravas and tomato salsa, a beautiful and very generous plate of food that he had a hard time finishing.

Corn cakes with pork shoulder, sunny side up egg, patatas bravas and tomato salsa

After our plates were cleared, there was a little dilemma at our table. We started debating whether or not we should order the sweet potato french toast with caramelized bananas and dark chocolate that had caught my eye on the menu. It was pure gluttony at this point since we were already full but really, was there ever a doubt? It was just too good to pass up! The french toast was soft and sweet and the bananas caramelized and drenched in sweet syrup. The dark chocolate and the fresh fruit added a nice contrast to the sweetness of the dish. Absolutely delicious!

Sweet potato french toast with caramelized bananas and dark chocolate

If Madre wasn’t so far away from where I live, I know that I would be there at least once or twice a week. And I know exactly what I would have too: ceviche, homemade corn bread and sweet potato bread pudding. Every time. The brunch was delicious and different from anything else you get in the city but the dish that will definitely keep me going back there is the ceviche, always.

2931 Masson, Montreal
514 315 7932

Tuesday-Saturday: 5:30pm-10pm

Sundays: 10am-2pm

Read my review of Mario Navarrete Jr’s À Table restaurant here.