montreal, canada, quebec eats, montreal eats, the word bookstore, heather o'neill

Montréal in the Fall.

The leaves turn yellow, orange, red, then fall into the gutters, revealing skeletal, looming tree-shaped monsters that line the streets and live in the parks. We pile layers on, at first slowly: a scarf, a toque, an extra pair of socks. And then our permanent wardrobe becomes: heads wrapped in wool, bodies lined with goose down to protect our soft kitten skin against the elements, feet buried beneath layers of socks that start at the toe and finish somewhere mid-thigh.

For those of us who are not fair weather Montréal dwellers, we have no choice but to make the most of the changing of seasons, which can plunge from +30 to -30 in a matter of weeks.

We walk through the streets fondly remembering that corner where we sat on the terrace while basking in the heat and drinking mojitos, across from that park where we spent lazy afternoons lounging in bikinis and flirting with the skater boys, and instead head into the warmth of a café to drink creamy Americanos and read the horoscopes in Le Devoir.

In this multi-part series, we pay homage to some of our favourite things to do in the various Montréal climates and temperaments, starting with the slide from Fall into Winter.

We hope you enjoy our recommendations/daily itinerary, and please add your suggestions to the comments.


On days like today when, upon waking you know that any attempt to leave the warm cocoon under your covers will be literally impossible, it’s time to enlist the services of a lover-type to ensure you have an easy transition into the day, amirite?

Whether they’re sleeping beside you, on speed-dial, or somewhere deep in your messenger history, give them strict orders to bring you fresh croissant and café au lait.

We recommend Les Co'Pains d’abord or Croissant Croissant for the city's fluffiest croissants, and Noble Café for coffee on the go.


Once you’ve braced yourself against the day with coffee and baked goods, it’s time to plunge headfirst into the cold - but momentarily! - to head to the Cinémathèque and slip into the darkness of the well-heated theatre to watch one of their feature films which is destined to be French and moody - just like you’re feeling in Montréal in the late Fall.

Check out current showtimes here.

Prefer the comfort of a good book? The Word Bookstore is a Montréal classic located in the McGill ghetto and filled with everything from the classics to philosophy, to contemporary Québecois/Canadian literature.

Our latest scores? Lullabies for Little Criminals by Heather O’Neill and American Psycho by Brett Easton Ellis.

(Want more book recommendations? You can check out our latest reading list here)

Happy Hour

Depending on your budget, we suggest that you spend your 5 à 7 at home over a bottle of stout or Malbec and maybe get some work done (does anyone actually work in this city?), or head to la Buvette Chez Simone to indulge in their extensive wine list and nibble on a charcuterie plate. 

Another good choice would be a bracing glass of whiskey or gin at Pub L’île Noire. They’ve got over 400 types of whiskeys and 100 different gins, so don’t be shy to ask the bartender to make you something special (or two... or three...).

Late Night

After a full day of filling your belly and staying out of the cold, head to Boswell’s to sink your kitten fangs into their salmon tartare (to die for!) and try every beer on tap.

Featuring their own brews (the Milkshake IPA is our fav) plus an eclectic mix of beer from breweries located all over Québec, there’s a lot to love about this up and coming microbrasserie.

Sit at the bar and shut the place down with their friendly staff of beer-experts who are always happy to drink along with you.

Can you tell we love to keep ourselves well fed and watered?

And really, no matter what time of the year you can find us out and exploring different parts of the city, always searching for our new favourite haunts.

Have a recommendation? Let us know in the comments.