Mike CohenMTL Resto Rap

Every so often I wind up at a culinary establishment where I ask myself the question, “How is it possible that I have never been here before?”

Such is precisely the case for the iconic Duc de Lorraine, located on Côte des Neiges Road just off Queen Mary. Since 1952, this truly magical spot has served French pastries, seasonal cakes, viennoiseries and macarons, using traditional recipes by great French pastry chefs. Victoria Sørensen became the owner 12 years ago and she clearly has the magic touch; for this is a restaurant, catering service, dessert emporium and a pastry shop all rolled into one.

Duc de Lorraine owner Victoria Sørensen

Duc de Lorraine owner Victoria Sørensen

There are 52 seats inside and two fabulous terrasses with tables separated by plexi-glass that can accommodate 100 diners. Then there is the bonus section, a series of plastic chairs and tables just across the street that were setup by the city, but maintained by Victoria and her staff. During the COVID-19 shutdown it was perfectly acceptable for people to make a take-out order and then go and sit there to enjoy their food. Customers even did so in the winter.

“A couple years ago the city created this area, initially as a pilot project,” Victoria explains.  “The land in the park is owned by the city, although we help maintain the park daily by cleaning, wiping down tables and chairs throughout the day. During COVID this was a wonderful space for customers to enjoy a coffee and pastry.”

Brunch and Dinner

Duc de Lorraine is open seven days a week, from 6:30 am to 10:30 pm. It came highly recommended to me by friends Michael and Frank that this is great choice for a splendid breakfast. The first piece of good news for me is that they serve brunch until 3 pm.

Duc de Lorraine

Server Marieve presents some delicious brunch options

Start off with an Americano or a Cappuccino, then try some of their specialties. There are a few superb renditions of Eggs Benedict: the lobster version comes with two eggs, fresh lobster and hollandaise sauce, homemade brioche bread, roasted potatoes and fresh fruit. There is also a version with filet mignon instead of lobster, which got a big thumbs up from Frank. Michael, who has been a regular here for many years, opted for the Omelette Cabri: egg white, goat cheese and spinach omelette with roasted potatoes and fresh fruit. Frank could not resist ordering one of their critically acclaimed buttery croissants. Michael favored a side order of sausages. You can also get pancakes, crepes, French toast and more.

I intend to return for lunch and dinner sometime soon. From 11:30 am to 3pm you can order a mimosa, Bellini, Rossini and champagne. The second menu, available from 11 am to closing  time, has salads, soups, burgers, quiche, pasta, steak, filet mignon, fish and shrimp just to name a few. And of course for dessert, wow is there a selection. Tapas dishes are served every night from 5pm and meant to be shared.

Delicacies To Take Home

Besides a quiche pie, Victoria sent me home with a package of macarons, a selection of breads and danishes and a box full of pastries to-die-for: chocolate éclair, cheesecake, lemon, mousse royale and millefeuille.

Duc de Lorraine’s reputation stems from its commitment to using only the finest natural ingredients. One bite will transport you into the magical world of France. Victoria proudly notes that they have maintained the original recipes from their great chefs over the years, valuing the importance of quality above all. It is for the sake of quality that they always use the best ingredients, such as the highest grade of eggs, real butter, 35 percent cream, fresh fruit, and many other quality ingredients.

If you are looking for a cake for a wedding or another special occasion, this is the place to go.

Victoria Adds Her Own Touch

Before Victoria became the owner, Duc de Lorraine had more of a bistro menu of grilled baguettes and quiche. Over the years she developed separate menus for brunch, dinner, cocktails and added wine. “I wanted to create a space where the food would be at the same level of our pastry chef Bruno’s creations,” she said.

Duc de Lorraine survived the COVID-19 storm by maintaining its opening hours and consistent production by both the pastry and kitchen teams. They added Uber Eats for deliveries.

Duc de Lorraine is located at 5002 Chemin de la Cote des Neiges. Opening hours are from 6:30am to 10:30pm. You can call them at 514-731-4128  or visit: www.ducdelorraine.ca

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