Welcome to Charlevoix, Quebec. One of the most beautiful regions in the province and the place I have been exploring for two days. Thanks to my two fabulous hosts at Le Manoir Hortensia I’ve been able to visit some of the best dining spots in the region. From Baie-St-Paul to La Malbaie and of course Isle-aux-Coudres in the middle of the St Lawrence River. Where to eat in Charlevoix? The list isn’t as comprehensive as I would like as I’ve only had two full days in the area plus it was over a long weekend. As a first timer though these are some great spots that I can guarantee will leave you satisfied and happy. From your first cup of coffee and freshly baked baguettes to locally made cheeses and of course fine dining at night. Charlevoix has it all including a Belgian chocolate shop. Are you hungry yet? Let’s eat.
Auberge des 3 Canards – Located in La Malbaie this restaurant and hotel offers a refined evening of great food and friendly service. All of the staff are comfortable speaking French and English. Give it a try en Francais but know you can slip back into English if you have to. I ordered the table d’hote which is a fixed price meal consisting of 5 courses, one being a palette cleanser.
Apologies for the below photos. The lighting was perfect to set the mood for a romantic evening, but a challenge to photograph in without disturbing the other guests. The highlights of my meal were the following; Boneless Quail stuffed with Wild Mushrooms in a mushroom sauce (NOMNOMNOM). A Creamed Onion Soup that had a lovely hint of caramelised sweetness and the main course of Veal Sweetbreads flambéed in Calvados, parmesan gnocchis, prosciutto and truffle oil. All made even better as I paired it with a local brew from Microbrasserie Charlevoix.
Le Diapason – This Alsatian bistro in the heart of Baie-St-Paul has hit the right note with outstanding food in a casual atmosphere. Whether you are interested in sampling local fare or the Alsatispecialitiesies of Chef Owner Steve Michel you can’t go wrong. The front of House is managed by Eve Soulard (wife and co-owner with Chef) so if you have any questions she is perfectly prepared to help you out. My first course is a favourite dish of mine, Escargot followed by a plate of Sauerkraut with Pork and Sausages. I was joined by new friends who enjoyed an Alsatian pizza aka Flammkuchen. Oh, and if you still have room for dessert try the Chocolate Pie.
Boulangerie Bouchard – as I wrote in my adventures on Isle Aux Coudres the place to stop for baked treats, coffee, sandwiches and salads is the Boulangerie Bouchard. Serving the community since 1945 you must try some Pets de Soeur and Sugar Pie if you have any sweet tooth at all.
Pains d’exclamation – In La Malbaie, the place I go to for coffee and baked goods is Pains d’exclamation. Another great recommendation by my hosts at Le Manoir Hortensia. Always trust the locals when they recommend a place and they didn’t steer me wrong here.
Fromagerie St Fidele – Want to pick up some locally made cheese, beer or an ice cream? You can get it all at this 100+-year-old fromagerie in La Malbaie. I picked up all three during my two visits.
La Chocolaterie du Village – Craving a little chocolate while wondering where to eat in Charlevoix? Look no further than La Chocolaterie du Village in Les Eboulemonts. If you are heading to Isle-aux-Coudres it is really close to the turn off to the ferry… just saying…. Trained in Belgian these hand made chocolates are as good as anything you’ll enjoy in Paris. I see oui oui!
As you can see there is an abundance of great dining options in Charlevoix. Where to eat in Charlevoix isn’t a hard question to answer, what’s hard is finding enough time to visit them all. This is what I discovered in just 2 days, imagine what I could find in a week. Bon Apetite!