My Montreal

My Montreal: Fashion Designer Valérie Tolila of VAIKEN

It won’t be the first time Montreal designers invade the catwalk of Toronto Fashion Week, from Oct. 20 to the 25, but it will be a first for Valérie Tolila. The designer behind Montreal label VAIKEN will be taking the stage as a finalist in the Mercedes-Benz Start Up competition, a...

My Montreal: Chef Omar Zabuair of L’Orignal Restaurant

Chef Omar Zabuair learned one of his most important lessons while spending a year working in Italy: Primo grande cuoco, segundo grande chef, which translates into “First you have to be a great cook, and then you can be a great chef.” Born and raised in Toronto, the 37-year-old chef...

My Montreal: Chef Jonathan Lapierre-Réhayem of Laloux Restaurant

Jonathan Lapierre-Réhayem helms the stoves at upscale Pine St. bistro Laloux. The job came with big shoes to fill when chef Seth Gabrielse and pastry chef Michelle Marek left to open the SAT’s Labo Culinaire in 2011. In fact, many a culinary wunderkind has called those stoves home over the...

My Montreal: Fashion Designer Travis Taddeo

To say Travis Taddeo lives and breathes fashion design would be an understatement. The Montreal-based designer, who mischievously declined to reveal his age, lives out of his spacious Old Montreal workshop and showroom on St-Paul St. W. Born in Calgary, Taddeo came to Montreal in 2001 to study fashion marketing,...

My Montreal: Jeff Finkelstein of Hof Kelsten

Jeff Finkelstein recalls eating danishes, cinnamon rolls and babka as a child at Montreal bakeries like Solly’s, Montreal Kosher and Saint Laurent Bakery. “Saint Laurent was where Moishes got their rye bread, and now they’re getting their bread from me,” says the 36-year-old Montrealer who grew up in Côte Saint-Luc....

My Montreal: Chef Antonio Park of Park Restaurant

Antonio Park is the celebrated chef behind the innovative Park Restaurant, which opened in February 2012 and Park Market, which opened in September 2013, both located on Victoria Ave. in Westmount. His cuisine is both beautiful and delicious, and the dishes are a product of his eclectic background. Park was born...

My Montreal: Ana Maria Ortiz of Pomarosa Gelato

Ana Maria Ortiz is at the helm of new artisanal gelateria Pomarosa on the Plateau’s Saint-Denis St., serving up 24 flavours including the South American likes of creamy, as-decadent-as-you’d-expect avocado. Ortiz has all the credentials to make our favourite cold treat. She is a biologist, food scientist and food microbiologist...

My Montreal: Nick Hamilton, Wine Instructor and Sommelier

Nick Hamilton is the only sommelier in Montreal who teaches wine courses in English. He holds classes of 15 students every September and January at his home on St-Denis St. through his company, Les Conseillers du Vin. His students include wine sales reps, hotel and restaurant staff and anyone else...

MY MONTREAL: GENEVIÈVE EMOND OF BOTA BOTA

Geneviève Emond is no stranger to water. She grew up on the South Shore, vacationed in the Laurentians at the family cottage, and enjoyed camp every summer. Swimming, paddle-boarding, living (and working) adjacent the St-Lawrence River; there’s rarely a moment when Emond, a co-owner of Bota Bota floating spa, isn’t...

My Montreal: Charles Bierbrier of Bierbrier Brewing

“I guess you can say it was in my blood,” said Charles Bierbrier, whose name means “beer brewer” in German. The founder of Bierbrier Brewing started home brewing as a hobby while he was in college. By the time he obtained his MBA from Concordia University in 2003 and started...
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