Apr 09

A Taste of the Middle Coast

by JaronW · 0 comments

Moules & Frites at the Oyster Bar

As a Calgarian who lived in Montreal after University, I was constantly reminded of things I was missing out on. We live in the same country, but regional preferences and availability of certain products made for an interesting look at how subtle differences can make an impact. Some food-related things that threw me about living in Montreal;

  • The popularity of Kokanee and Molson Canadian is close to zero
  • Sour Cream and Onion chips were almost impossible to find outside of the summer months
  • You can buy beer and wine in the grocery store
  • Maple Syrup Street Vendors
  • Moules et Frites

After moving to Montreal in the spring, it did not take long before my first mussel experience. Almost every cafe or restaurant seemed to be serving ‘Moules et Frites’, which was always a few dozen mussels floating in a delicious house-made sauce and paired with an order of french fries. Each restaurant had their own take on the sauce, some with various flavours to choose from, but all brimming with delicious butter.

Now that I’ve settled in Calgary, I’ve missed the simple pleasure of this maritime meal. Different regional tastes, and the lack of a nearby ocean makes the mussels and fries difficult to come by. However, after spending some time downtown I found that the Oyster Bar does a Moules et Frites special every Thursday. For $14 you can enjoy a steaming pot of delicious mussels in a pesto sauce served with french fries. With a small bucket for your discarded shells, and some baguette to soak up any leftover butter, the entire meal was a flashback to my carefree days back in YUL.

While mussels and fries aren’t exactly a culinary attraction worth moving for, it’s good to see the delicacy on a few menus in the city. Mussels and Fries goes great with a few beers, for lunch or as a snack, which makes it a great alternative to chicken wings and nachos.

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