Give the Gift of Montreal Restaurant Merch This Holiday Season

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Over 30 last-minute ideas for those who miss going out to eat

If there ever was a year to eschew the throngs of last-minute shoppers on Saint-Catherine Street and steer clear of overloaded mall parking lots, this would, indisputably, be it. Instead, make a beeline to these Montreal restaurant websites (or their takeout counters), where you’ll find stocking-stuffer-appropriate wool tuques, gorgeously designed wine glasses, some cookbooks to nourish the nostalgic restaurant goer in your life, and lots more. (Online shop Brunette, linked throughout this guide, also has a great selection of gift-worthy merch.)

Can’t find what you are looking for? A panettone is always a good idea, and so is a gift card — something nearly every establishment in the city will be happy to produce these days.

Tops


Brunette/webisteBeautys — Crewneck Sweatshirt

For that Beautys’ stalwart who’s been counting down the days until the iconic breakfast diner is able to reopen its door after renovating its retro, 78-year-old space. ($60)


Sainte-Cécile/websiteComptoir Sainte-Cécile — Hoodie

The design of this stylish black hoodie from favourite Villeray sandwich-and-more counter comes courtesy of Pony, the alias of illustrator Gabrielle Laïla Tittley, who also recently opened her own shop on St-Hubert.


Brunette/websiteArthurs — Toddler T-Shirt

For that toddler who won’t let up about those Arthurs’ sprinkle cookies and fluffy Sunday pancakes. ($20)


Dalla Rosa/websiteDalla Rosa — Pistachio Tee

The next best thing to Dalla Rosa’s roasted pistachio ice cream (which you can also buy online) is this limited-edition t-shirt, designed by Daniel LaForest and printed at Saint-Henri gallery-shop-café The Letterbet. ($25)


Pumpui/websitePumpui — Long Sleeve Bangkok Tee

The merch from St Zotique’s hit Thai restaurant and grocery shop Pumpui is among the most sought-after in the city — and its proceeds often go to a good cause, too. This long-sleeve option was designed by the talented Albert Nguyen. ($45)


Brunette/websiteOtto — Crewneck Sweatshirt

Since opening Montreal’s first yakitori restaurant downtown in 2016, the Otto team has added a bistro and bar to the mix — their merch works as a present for fans of all three. ($45)

Tote Bags


St-Viateur/websiteSt-Viateur Bagel — Tote bag

An affordable price tag makes this tote bag from one of Montreal’s two undisputed bagel kings the perfect stocking stuffer; it could also double as Christmas wrapping. ($5)


Mano Cornuto/websiteMano Cornuto — Wine Tote
This tote bag from Griffintown’s Italian snack bar Mano Cornuto conveniently carries six bottles, and when purchased in person, it can be pre-filled with the good stuff. ($19.99 for the bag only)


Brunette/websiteBrunette x MRWRF — Tote Bag

This one doesn’t exactly count as “restaurant merch,” but with all proceeds going to the Montreal Restaurant Workers Relief Fund (MRWRF) — i.e. the people who make the city’s beloved dining scene function in the first place — it’s worth the purchase. ($25)


Dépanneur le Pick-Up/websiteDépanneur le Pick Up — Tote

This beloved Mile-Ex sandwich shop has shut its doors for the winter, but is very much still present on its e-commerce shop online. This particular tote (there are others) dons a vintage Dépanneur le Pick Up illustration of muffins deep in a makeout session. ($15)


Café Iso/FacebookCafé ISO — Tote

One-year-old Café ISO has come out with some new merch in time for the holidays. Among the t-shirts and the sweatshirts is this tote bag, designed and printed by racetrackpony, and available in store. ($18)


Dispatch/websiteDispatch — Tote

Montreal café and roaster Dispatch has built an empire from what began as a coffee truck and now counts several brick-and-mortar spots, an online coffee subscription, and some stellar merch, like this organic cotton tote bag embellished with its recognizeable periwinkle blue logo. ($15.66)

Hats


Barroco/websiteFugazzi — Beanie

This florescent orange tuque embroidered with the logo of Pointe-Saint-Charles pizzeria Fugazzi will satisfy the pizza lover — i.e., almost everyone — in your life. ($19)


Elena/websiteElena — Ciele Cap

The purveyor of arguably Montreal’s best restaurant merch, Saint-Henri pizzeria Elena has teamed up with home-grown athletics brand Ciele, for a forest green cap stamped with the now very-recognizable Elena bonhomme. ($45)


Brunette/websiteMcKiernan — Tuque

McKiernan hoodies, t-shirts, totes, and even baby onesies are available on Brunette, but something about this cuffed knit tuque feels particularly fitting for this very Canadian-feeling Joe Beef-Maison Publique tie-up. ($30)


Le Fricot/FacebookLe Fricot — Tuque

Montreal’s first Acadian seafood restaurant is stocked with some fun merch, like this winter beanie, featuring what else but a Chiac expression meaning, “Let’s go.” Pick-up only. (30$)


Brunette/websiteChez Tousignant — Cap

Anyone who has been to this Little Italy casse-croûte will recognize these caps as the ones sported by the Chez Tousignant team, including chef Yann Turcotte, who spearheaded the venture, along with Stefano Faita and Michele Forgione. Ideal for the person who’d gladly trade in turkey and cranberry sauce for a burger and poutine. ($25)

Homeware


Beau Temps/suppliedBeau Temps — Wine glasses

This new Mile End gourmet sandwich counter was meant to be a wine bar, but then COVID-19 hit. While the Beau Temps team waits for indoor dining to resume, they’ve come out with these gorgeous glasses that’ll keep wine on your mind. Pick up in person. ($10 for one, $55 for six).


Café Vito/FacebookCafé Vito — Espresso cup

Buy a bag of espresso beans and a cup and saucer to match at this tiny, Italian coffee shop and hang out spot in Villeray. ($5)


Brunette/websitePizza Toni — Tray

Mile End slice shop Pizza Toni, and its sister Falafel Yoni, have great branding, so it’s no surprise their merch — like this nostalgia-inducing camtray — would be on point, too.


Café Saint Henri/websiteCafé Saint-Henri — Tumbler

If you are planning to gift a tumbler this year, why not one from Café Saint-Henri? Theirs keeps beverages cold or hot and comes in a clean-lined design from socially-conscious drinkware brand Miir. ($39.50)


Boxermans/websiteBoxermans — Limonadier

Wine has always been a focal point at Boxermans, making this branded corkscrew especially apropos. Pair with one of their sleek wine glasses for a themed gift. ($15)

Foodstuff


Menu Extra/websiteMenu Extra — Montreal Miso

Chefs Camilo Lapointe Nascimento and Francis Blais have been drawing attention with masterfully crafted pithiviers, but those are only one part of the Menu Extra puzzle: Another is their fermented Japanese condiments made of Quebec ingredients. Pictured here is the miso. ($21)


Café Denise/FacebookDenise — Natural Wine

For a nice selection of giftable natural wines, visit Park-Ex’s Denise. Longstanding liquor permit regulations, which are currently being widely protested, mean that you may have to buy some food at the same time. With Denise’s menu, you’ll be glad do so.


Candide/websiteCandide — Preserves kit

Chef John Winter Russell of restaurant Candide is setting Montrealers up for a long winter, with four 1.89 litre jars filled with tomato and lovage sauce, green tomato and herb salsa, wild mushroom and bean stew, and tomatoes preserved in salt water. ($88 for the set, or $22 if purchased individually)


Les Filles Fattoush/websiteLes Filles Fattoush — The Essentials of Middle Eastern Cooking

This Middle Eastern cooking kit includes Aleppo spices, pomegranate molasses, sumac, and zaatar all procured from Syria, but packed by Les Filles Fattoush, a catering team of women who came to Canada as refugees. ($48)


Cardinal Tea Room/FacebookCardinal Tea Room — Cookie Boxes

St-Laurent’s Cardinal Tea room is taking orders for Christmas cookie boxes, ready to be picked up on December 19 or 20. First 15 orders get a free tin of loose leaf tea. ($25)


Maison Publique/websiteMaison Publique — Bomba Sauce

This spicy blend of jalapeño, serrano, peperoncini, chili flakes, and more hails from chef Derek Dammann’s renowned (and Jamie Oliver-backed) gastropub Maison Publique. ($11)

Other (But Mainly Books)


Mand’s/websiteMandy’s Gourmet Salads — Cookbook

From creative, leafy creations to Mandy’s indelible chocolate chip cookies, this cookbook by the sisters who started the Montreal salad chain has something for everyone. ($35)


Patisserie Rhubarbe — Shadow game

This cutout by Montreal-based art duo mere phantoms reflects a shadow of the Patisserie Rhurbarbe storefront onto a background surface — for the young, or young at heart. ($12)


Olve & Gourmando/websiteOlive & Gourmando — Cookbook

One hundred and fifty recipes from an iconic chef and her iconic restaurant — and some gorgeous photography from Maude Chauvin to boot. ($39.95)


Schwartz’s Hebrew Delicatessen — Book

From Montreal Gazette columnist Bill Brownstein comes this intricate story of the early days of Schwartz’s delicatessen and its world-renowned smoked meat. ($18.95)

This article was originally published here

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