A co-owner of comforting Montreal food scene staple Olive & Gourmando is set to release her first cookbook next month.
Penned by chef-owner Dyan Solomon, Olive & Gourmando: The Cookbook will be released November 6. It will feature over 150 recipes past and present from the St-Paul Street restaurant, known for its sandwiches, homey-yet-refined breakfasts, and mountains of excellent baked goods.
Olive & Gourmando’s recipes have mostly never been published before, except for a brief appearance in all-star compilation cookbook Montreal Cooks, back in 2015. What exactly will be in the book is mostly a mystery, although a press release notes that brownies, homemade ricotta, and the restaurant’s popular #24 salad will all be featured.
The hardcover book, loaded up with pictures and stories of the restaurant, will retail for $39.95; it’s currently listed for pre-order via publishing house Ko).
Olive & Gourmando has been a casual culinary anchor for Old Montreal — it built up a name serving baked goods, breakfast, and lunch to workers in the area since 1999, well before the neighbourhood became a hub for tourists.
With the impending release, Solomon and Olive & Gourmando join a relatively exclusive club of Montreal chefs and restaurants to have their own cookbooks. That group includes Joe Beef owners Fred Morin and David McMillan, who have released two of them in conjunction with writer Meredith Erickson; Maison Publique owner Derek Dammann and Chuck Hughes of Le Garde-Manger also have books to their names.
Solomon is quite the food scene doyenne — having graduated from the New England Culinary Institute in Vermont in the ‘90s, she worked at Toqué, where she met now-business partner and Olive & Gourmando co-owner Eric Girard. The duo opened Olive & Gourmando in 1998.
She and Girard now have their own little restaurant empire, having opened Foxy in Griffintown in 2015, centred around fire-cooked meats and vegetables, and Italian spot Un Po’ di Più in 2018. There’s more in the works: both Foxy and Olive & Gourmando will have locations in the upcoming Time Out Market, opening in downtown Montreal next month.