Vegan in Quebec
Being vegan in Quebec is quite a delicious affair. While it isn’t a city famed for it’s vegan options, the ones that it does more than make up for this. I was staying at Fairmont Le Château Frontenac (click to read more), so the places I visited were mainly within the Old Town.
Le Soixante 5
The St Lawrence river was frozen over and the wind was blowing a chilly -20 degrees celcius, but this meal was every bit worth the trip on an ice breaking ferry, to get to Lévis on the other side of the river. The view from Lévis gives a different perspective of Quebec and and the sense of adventure made the whole experience even more enjoyable.
The family-run Le Soixante 5 serves home-style plant-based meals, providing all of the comfort that I was looking for on a chilly Saturday evening. The wooden, scandi-esque interior gives a cosy atmosphere. The menu makes for some difficult decisions with nachos, tacos, risotto, seitan steak, lasagne, mac ’n’ cheese all available amongst a range of other dishes. The drinks list is packed with local beers and wines. There is an outdoor terrace area at the front of the restaurant that looks as though it is counting down until the more welcoming spring weather. This is a definite must-try during a trip to Quebec.
Les Gourmandises Louca
Just outside of the old city walls, Les Gourmandises Louca is both a vegan cafe and a zero waste store. Fitting in with the zero waste policy, all furniture is second hand which creates a chilled and cosy interior with a small table tucked in the window and a larger communal table for sharing. Walking to Les Gourmandises Louca on a bitterly cold December day, it was just the warm welcome with delicious homemade food that I was hoping for.
The large counter is filled with lots of vegan goodies; tarts, quiches, pizza, cakes, tortes and power balls. The chalkboard menu is happily translated with the likes of soups, salads, lasagne, croque monsieur and a burger.
One wall is lined with containers of nuts, seeds, lentils, grains, herbs and spices that you can bring your own containers to restock, as well as household products like washing up liquid and hand soap.
Les Gourmandises Louca feels like a little vegan oasis in the heart of Quebec and is one not to be missed for the great food, the cosy vibe and their fantastic ethics.
Bistro L’Orygine serves creative, organic dishes in the heart of Old Quebec. While Bistro L’Orygine isn’t strictly vegan, vegetables take pride of place on the menu with all ingredients being sourced within a 50 mile radius of the restaurant. This means that the menu changes regularly in line with what is in season. The setting has a scandi-clean look, with wooden floors and ceilings and bright coloured furniture pieces.
All of the dishes at L’Orygine are larger than a typical entrée but smaller than a typical main, with the recommendation being 2-3 dishes per person and sharing encouraged. We got four dishes between two people which was just about enough. They have a whole dessert shop next door which looked delicious, but disappointingly the only vegan option was a sorbet.
Le SAM Bistro
Le SAM is a bistro-bar type gourmet restaurant located within the Fairmont Le Château Frontenac Hotel in Old Quebec. It’s a casual-chic part restaurant, part lounge with a huge panoramic window looking out to the St Lawrence river. They have a dedicated Vegetarian menu that is actually all vegan and has some great options. The ginger & cashew roasted tempeh was so delicious that I came back a few days later for another one.
This is a really nice spot for a nice lunch with a great view. Make sure to book ahead as as with everything inside Le Château Frontenac, it gets very busy.
Matto was a great little find in the heart of the Old Town. An authentic Italian restaurant serving delicious comfort food with trendy cocktails to match. This isn’t a vegan restaurant but the staff were really knowledgeable about ingredients and knew exactly what could be altered how. Dinner was a dimly-lit, high energy affair, while coming back for lunch was more laid-back relaxing.
Le Champlain is the finer, gourmet restaurant within the Fairmont Le Château Frontenac, occupying a front row view of the St Lawrence river. The modern design combines with original architectural structures, as well as open fires and wooden furniture to create a warm and cozy atmosphere. Dishes are prepared using local produce and the result is fantastic. The extensive wine fridges are unmissable with a wide selection to choose from. Le Champlain is open for dinner only throughout the week and reservations need to be made in advance.
With three locations across Quebec’s Old Town, Café La Maison Smith became a daily morning ritual during my time in Quebec for their unbeatable oat milk lattes. Quebec is a little behind Europe with the availability of oat milk so discovering Café La Maison Smith felt like a real win. Sadly there weren’t any vegan food treats, but hopefully this is just a matter of time.