Parisian Dining with Duc de Lorraine

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Joe and I love trying out new restaurants. While other people settle into their favorite dining spots, my husband and I would much rather scour different parts of the city in hopes to discover our next, great meal.

There are, however, exceptions to every rule. Although visiting new places makes for a splendid and adventurous date-night-out, there’s a bakery where we’ve finally marked ourselves as “regulars.” It is the one place where we’ll consistently pop in for a pastry, take the time to have a sit-down Sunday brunch, and of course, the very spot where we ordered our magnificent wedding cake… I present to you, Duc de Lorraine.

Duc de Lorraine is like magic: step through their doors and you’ll instantly be transported to a perfect scene of an authentic Parisian café. You’ll hear dishes softly clinking against one another, calming music, and dine on the most beautiful marble tabletops.

Of course, humans have not yet mastered the art of teleportation, so while the ambiance is very Paris-like, a beautiful view from their large, sunny windows will show you the incredible St-Joseph’s Oratory, reminding you that Montreal is where you still are, and that a little taste of Europe awaits in your upcoming meal.

Truly authentic (and trust me, even Joe says so… and being born and raised in Europe, spending his college years in France, he’s a pretty tough judge to impress), and consistently delicious – last week, we enjoyed our usual Sunday brunch of chocolatines and 3-egg cheese omelettes.

Joe and I may bounce around from resto to resto, but we’ve found home and commitment to the Duc.

Duc de Lorraine5002 ch. de la Cote-des-Neiges, Montreal, QC, tel.: (514) 731-4128

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Meringue Cupcakes and an Oversized Poncho

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{Featured Food: meringue chocolate cupcakes; Lefties poncho}

And so here it is: the first installment for an original Marble Crumbs series: Fashion and Food.

For me, cupcakes are one of the easiest desserts to serve: everyone can just grab from the tray and indulge… no need for cutting, plating, and cleaning up extra dishes.

These meringue chocolate cupcakes were a fun alternative to your classic buttercream topping. The toasted meringue offered a new taste and consistency to the ultra-sweetness we’re normally used to in our desserts.

Because it’s winter and I refuse to reduce the amount of times we hold dinner parties, I found this poncho to be ideal for the ultimate hostess-outfit. It’s warm, the sleeves don’t get in the way when I’m cooking, and I love the patterns that are carefully placed around the seams.

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What are your favorite toppings for your cupcakes?

Best of the Week

BOTW-1Welcome to the first of Marble Crumbs’ Best Of series, where I’ll be rounding-up my favorite recipes, articles, photos, and all other pretty things that have elevated and inspired me throughout the course of the week.

I hope you all have a tasty-filled weekend!

{one} Stumbled upon this recipe using one of my fave syrups.

{two} Some fun meringue facts.

{three} This stacked meringue cake would definitely put me in a sugar-coma (and somehow, I don’t mind).

{four} The best base recipe for a gin and tonic.

Keeping it Sweet With Djinn Syrups

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In our household, we try and stick with premium ingredients for both our taste-buds’ and health’s sake.

This value of “quality control” in our kitchen has lead Joe and myself to discover some pretty great products. Recently, we met up with Boris Sem, creator and founder of Djinn Syrups: an all-natural, cold-press syrup made right here, in our home city (Montreal, Canada). Delicious, refreshing, and full of natural flavor, Djinn Syrups is the best companion to liven up your sparkling water, experiment with your cocktails, or to give your smoothies that extra shot of deliciousness. Our household’s favorite is the apple-cucumber-lime (it’s also their bestseller). It offers that cool, refreshing kick without completely overpowering your drink and we personally love adding it to our gin and tonics.

Having started in May 2015, Boris has big plans for his delicious brand. With how things are going, we see a bright future for Djinn Syrups (and we surely do hope so because we love to keep their bottles stocked in our fridge – it keeps up to a month and they are so ideal for entertaining).

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Breakfast for Three

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I could eat breakfast at any time of the day. I find it to be an incredibly versatile meal – there’s just so much you could do with the tastes (sweet vs. savory), the portion control (guilty as charged: I always opt for a hefty breakfast), and its arrangement (meat-heavy, carb-packed, granola-centered, etc). That being said, I absolutely adore serving it. A few Sundays ago, my friend Amanda came over for a mid-day visit and it was just so appropriate to host a “Sunday brunch.” She brought over a bag of fresh croissants and we cooked 3 plates worth of bacon, eggs, and potatoes.

My favorite part of making this meal was drawing inspiration from one of my favorite local diners and serving a side of mashed potatoes.

This was the first time Joe and I got to sit down and enjoy Amanda’s company since our recent nuptials. I have known Amanda since high-school and her friendship has always meant so much to me. It was wonderful to be able to spend some quality time with both her and my hubby, in the same room, devouring the same breakfast items (and of course, those mashed potatoes made for one interesting conversation starter!).breakfastforthree-a breakfastforthree-b breakfastforthree-c