The archetypal Montreal dépanneur has been made over lately by some intrepid types. Chefs, restaurateurs, craft beer nerds, and others have elevated what a corner store can be, beyond Loto-Québec terminals, milk, and potato chips. The latest outfit to shift the paradigm is Épicerie 1668, slated to open soon in Notre-Dame-de-Grâce in the former Arawak dépanneur at 5854 rue Sherbrooke Ouest. Principal Kyle Kerr (La Louisiane, Claremont Café) offered some intel on the project today: "My partner [in Épicerie 1668] is Sean Hayes. We worked together at La Louisiane. It's a dep, microbrew store, with a deli and some butchering in the back, and a dozen seats or so. Making cool sangers, sandwiches, certain sausages, a bunch of cool stuff."
History buffs take note: Kerr reported that Épicerie 1668's name refers to the year Jean Talon allegedly paved the way for New France's first brewery. He hopes to open his new business in a couple of weeks.