We spent two days in Quebec and discovered some of it’s growing cocktail scene. We missed out on some of Quebec’s classic cocktail bars (we aren’t organized enough for reservations), but discovered places that were exciting and budget friendly. While the cocktail scene is still small, we found tiny microbreweries on almost every street corner.
Here are some great spots in Quebec:
Our first dining experience abroad was at this trendy microbrewery in an up-and-coming area of Quebec City (Saint Jean). The food was excellent, and we enjoyed it while observing the main brewing room. Unfortunately, a majority of their brews were still in production, and only four were available at that time. Despite the lack of selection, we enjoyed the three we tried. The grapefruit stout–an interesting combination–started off with the traditional malt-forward profile of a stout, but finished with a citrusy hint on the back of the tongue. Their saison was herbaceous and mimicked certain flavors similar to our local Free State Brewing’s Garden Party Lager. However, this beer differed from Garden Party through its typical saison flavors. Banana and clove mixed with some more savory herbs to create a refreshing, lightly fruity brew. While the first two selections were unique, I was rather unimpressed by Noctem’s take on an American Pale Ale, as it lacked any real distinguishing characteristics and tasted like many other light beers..
438 Rue du Parvis
After reading about Batinse on World’s Best Bars, I knew it was a must. The atmosphere was whimsical and colorful with fake grass on the patio and swings as seats. Both the space and the cocktails were garnished beautifully. The cocktails we had were on the sweeter side, even those with chartreuse, but but matched the whimsical atmosphere. The patio is big and in a bustling part of Old Quebec so it’s the perfect location for people watching. My favorite cocktail was the Gérald featuring gin, chartreuse, and chai syrup. The chai wasn’t heavy, just a light aftertaste.
1200 Rue Saint-Jean
After a day of exploring Old Quebec and the market, we were ready for another drink. L’Atelier is surrounded by other patio bars and restaurants, but it’s cocktail list sets itself apart. It has a long list of house creations and classic cocktails, my favorite of which was the Zelda, a cocktail with Sake and radish. We went on a Wednesday, which is dollar oyster day. Being from Kansas, this is unheard of, or should not be trusted. These oysters were from just north of the city and were worth a higher price tag.
624 Grande Allée E
Balling on a Budget
Our first night, we were looking for something a little more divey and, more importantly, less expensive. We discovered Le Bureau de Poste a few blocks away from where we were staying. The drinks were very sweet but very cheap. The menu featured options for everyone–from a boozy pink lemonade “garnished” with a corona to a classic negroni. There is one caveat: at least one person at the table has to order food because of its restaurant permit. Le Bureau de Poste makes it easy on the wallet by pricing every food item at 4.95 Canadian dollars. I expected tiny portions of cheap, processed food, but it was the opposite. The portions were way too big, and the food was absolutely delicious. This place is a must for a good, cheap meal.
296 Rue Saint-Joseph Est