Basse-Ville, Caribou, award-winning poutine, Hotel de Glace & booty-shakin’.
The history! La mode! Les bon moments!
The inevitable fall into Franglais. Je suis désolé, folks. Mouse over the pics for the inside scoop and click on pics for the details. Miss the first 1/2 of the tour? Find our start here.
To the left of the boardwalk are several sets of (steep!) steps that head down to the lower village or Basse-Ville. Below the ramparts of ‘Upper Town’ the swoon-worthy architecture of Vieux Quebec continues, much of it constructed in the 17th and 18th centuries with a solid look of ‘fortification’. Thick stone walls, elegant wrought iron window cages, sturdy wooden shutters on wrought iron hinges. (not the plastic jobbies we’ve gotten used to slapping on our vinyl siding, folks) Brilliant enamel painted doors and shutters contrast with the stone walls and brick walkways. Historically a merchant center, tucked in all these historic doorways you’ll find gorgeous modern Canadian and European fashions with classic Québecois-style furs. (ps I fell in love with a Québécois-made $350 white lynx fur aviator hat at Artisans Canada, maybe next year. Ahem.)
Who invented Caribou?
Ti-Pére’s grandmother, that’s who. Chez Ti-Pére is right in the thick of Basse-Ville. Just the steam from a shot of his meme’s Caribou (spiced mulled wine, whiskey and maple syrup) will take the chill off. But as rugged as it is, it’s got to be a good sight better than the hot-caribou-blood-and-whiskey version the hunters and loggers were drinking in Colonial times, eh?
Ou est la poutine?
Back in ‘Upper-Town’ at les Trois Garçons, people. In spades.
Highly recommended for their elegant combination of modern and rustic elements. Rich flavor profiles are built into classic comfort dishes like poutine, burgers and french onion soup. Come for the food, enjoy the atmosphere, but linger with the beer and friendly service. Les Trois Garçons‘ poutine had been entered in this years ‘best of Carnaval’ contest, and we’ll all be surprised if it didn’t win.
Hotel de Glace | the Ice Hotel
I’m chilly just thinking about it.
This l’Accident de Snow Mobile will take the edge off the chill and put a smile on your face. Promise. The ice bar at Hotel de Glace serves up some swanky concoctions in their signature ice ‘glass’. But before heading to the bar, we took a tour of the ice slide, hotel rooms, chapel (yes, you crazy kids. you can get married here) and discotheque.
Oh my way out, I made a friend at the gift shop…
And so we said “Salut!” to Carnaval de Québec with a yummy brunch at l’Omlette. Per request, other great dining spots are: Le D’Orsay (we ate here twice, killer duck confit, but more importantly for us, one of the few that serve food late night), Pub St Patrick (amazing interior, head downstairs for some serious 17th century grotto stone cave-like rooms, live music and the best french onion soup), le Cochon Dingue (yummy, fresh breakfast and brunch).
Here’s to Carnaval de Québec 2015!
Want to check out the first 1/2 of our 2 day trip, go here. And 2013′s trip, where I introduce Bonhomme to le snow skirt, here.