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This, closer to home
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The Essential Guide to Montreal Sugar Shack Menus, 2015

Cabane à sucres go urban.

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This, closer to home
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The idea of co-opting and recreating the sugar shack experience in the city has taken off in Montreal in a major way—it's marginally cliché come springtime. Most menus accenting maple are departing from old standards, which can be a hit-and-miss affair. Forget Caribou and tire d'érable—you're more likely to start off with a maple water apéritif and finish with a precious riff on maple pie these days. And don't look for the usual fèves au lard, tourtière and oreilles de crisse either. Montreal chefs are playing with all the rib-sticking classics; dressing them up with culinary school techniques, heightening them with luxurious and/or unusual ingredients and fusing them with outside influences. Here are 12 urban cabane à sucre experiences currently going on in Montreal.

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Le Bon Vivant

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This Saint-Henri restaurant close to Atwater Market is doing a cabane à sucre brunch on four successive Sundays in April. The menu is a soigné little departure from the norm—think birch sap and gin shots and Berkshire pork, tourtière-style, with blinis, sauerkraut, mushroom duxelle and borsht aioli. Reserve here.

L'Orignal

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You can still enjoy L'Orignal's regular menu in April, or try the Old Montreal restaurant's spin on sugar shack fare. Three courses for $40, available nightly throughout the month. The menu will change too. Best to call for reservations.

Les Trois Petits Bouchons

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Chef Audrey Dufresne will preside over a special cabane à sucre menu on April 5, 12, 19 and 26 at one of the city's best buvettes. Call for reservations.

Communion

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The Old Montreal restaurant La Presse critic Marie-Claude Lortie calls "rétro chic, un peu brasserie revisitée" inaugurated sugar shack dinner and brunch menus in mid-March. The former features four courses for $45, with items from chef J.C. Morency (pictured) like pea soup with foie gras emulsion, maple salmon gravlax with beets and whipped yogurt and pork loin with maple parsnip purée and cranberry gastrique.

Invitation V

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How about a cabane à sucre menu from a vegan bistro? Why not. Invitation V will pull it off with a $40 prix fixe brunch the first two weekends of April. Two services at 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Call to reserve.

Le Richmond

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This plush Griffintown restaurant serves maple-themed brunches every Sunday throughout the spring. Check out the menu here.

Laurie Raphaël

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Chef Daniel Vézina's restaurant in Hôtel Le Germain offers a cabane à sucre twist for brunch. The first two weekends of April represent your last chance to try the likes of spruce beer with whiskey and maple syrup, porky maple doughnut sandwiches and rabbit with truffles and foie gras.

Jack Saloon

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This show bar, restaurant, pub hybrid in Old Montreal will transform into a sugar shack on April 12 between 1 and 4 p.m.. A prix fixe $32 brunch features the likes of bourbon onion soup, salmon tartare, a hot pulled pork sandwich and rib eyes cooked over maple wood.
Chef Olivier Perret's sugar shack inspired menu at the Sofitel hotel's flagship restaurant is a more intricate, multi-course affair. On offer every Wednesday between 5 and 9 p.m. until April 8.
The annual 'Un Chef à l'érable' series at this Old Montreal space at Quai Jacques-Cartier runs Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m. and Sundays at 1 p.m. until April 12. The resident chef in charge of the maple-centric menu this year is Laurent Godbout of Chez l'Épicier. The $60 menu includes five courses.

Labarake / Caserne à Manger

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A sugar shack theme menu in the old Angus Shops fire house in Rosemont? Très Montréal. Until mid-April at Labarake.

Le Slang

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This Monkland Village restaurant will hold a sugar shack brunch on Sunday, April 12 from noon to 6 p.m. with maple taffy, a spit-roasted piglet, special cocktails and guest chefs Athiraj Phrasavath (Mercuri), Pablo Rojas, Hakim Rahal (Laurea), Lee Sallafranque (Hotel Place d'Armes), Yves Lowe (Hotel Place d'Armes) and Joe Rodriguez (Tapas 24).

Le Bon Vivant

This Saint-Henri restaurant close to Atwater Market is doing a cabane à sucre brunch on four successive Sundays in April. The menu is a soigné little departure from the norm—think birch sap and gin shots and Berkshire pork, tourtière-style, with blinis, sauerkraut, mushroom duxelle and borsht aioli. Reserve here.

L'Orignal

You can still enjoy L'Orignal's regular menu in April, or try the Old Montreal restaurant's spin on sugar shack fare. Three courses for $40, available nightly throughout the month. The menu will change too. Best to call for reservations.

Les Trois Petits Bouchons

Chef Audrey Dufresne will preside over a special cabane à sucre menu on April 5, 12, 19 and 26 at one of the city's best buvettes. Call for reservations.

Communion

The Old Montreal restaurant La Presse critic Marie-Claude Lortie calls "rétro chic, un peu brasserie revisitée" inaugurated sugar shack dinner and brunch menus in mid-March. The former features four courses for $45, with items from chef J.C. Morency (pictured) like pea soup with foie gras emulsion, maple salmon gravlax with beets and whipped yogurt and pork loin with maple parsnip purée and cranberry gastrique.

Invitation V

How about a cabane à sucre menu from a vegan bistro? Why not. Invitation V will pull it off with a $40 prix fixe brunch the first two weekends of April. Two services at 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Call to reserve.

Le Richmond

This plush Griffintown restaurant serves maple-themed brunches every Sunday throughout the spring. Check out the menu here.

Laurie Raphaël

Chef Daniel Vézina's restaurant in Hôtel Le Germain offers a cabane à sucre twist for brunch. The first two weekends of April represent your last chance to try the likes of spruce beer with whiskey and maple syrup, porky maple doughnut sandwiches and rabbit with truffles and foie gras.

Jack Saloon

This show bar, restaurant, pub hybrid in Old Montreal will transform into a sugar shack on April 12 between 1 and 4 p.m.. A prix fixe $32 brunch features the likes of bourbon onion soup, salmon tartare, a hot pulled pork sandwich and rib eyes cooked over maple wood.

Renoir

Chef Olivier Perret's sugar shack inspired menu at the Sofitel hotel's flagship restaurant is a more intricate, multi-course affair. On offer every Wednesday between 5 and 9 p.m. until April 8.

Scena

The annual 'Un Chef à l'érable' series at this Old Montreal space at Quai Jacques-Cartier runs Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m. and Sundays at 1 p.m. until April 12. The resident chef in charge of the maple-centric menu this year is Laurent Godbout of Chez l'Épicier. The $60 menu includes five courses.

Labarake / Caserne à Manger

A sugar shack theme menu in the old Angus Shops fire house in Rosemont? Très Montréal. Until mid-April at Labarake.

Le Slang

This Monkland Village restaurant will hold a sugar shack brunch on Sunday, April 12 from noon to 6 p.m. with maple taffy, a spit-roasted piglet, special cocktails and guest chefs Athiraj Phrasavath (Mercuri), Pablo Rojas, Hakim Rahal (Laurea), Lee Sallafranque (Hotel Place d'Armes), Yves Lowe (Hotel Place d'Armes) and Joe Rodriguez (Tapas 24).

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