Poutineville: Make it your own

Make it your own

Poutineville: Pick and choose
Photo: Marianne McEwen

Poutineville offers 77 million variations on poutine as we know it

Regular or large, four potato options, nine cheeses, a dozen veg, same for meat, five sauces, and with a choice of gratinée. You do the math, because frankly I can’t. I’m just taking the word of the waitress at the made-to-order poutinerie Poutineville that it all adds up. Less boggling, but still impressive, the new branch of the please-all resto goes through 4,000 pounds of PEI russets a week.

Poutineville started in Rosemont, but the one I visited took over the space formerly known as Le Porto in the Village. The walls are deep red, though beer signs indicate this is no longer the European bistro it once was. There are enough crystals hanging from the ceiling lamps to qualify them as chandeliers, and overall it’s a welcoming space – to sports fans who’ll situate themselves near the TV, to people on a casual date, to small kids who can avail themselves of highchairs and the reasonable and appealing kids menu.

So how are the French fries, the foundation of all poutine? At our table, both the small fry and the hot potato in my life approved. Thick cut, skin on and evident, crisp but not overly so (a "mess" does need to happen, after all it’s the original meaning of the word "poutine").

Though there are combo suggestions, we styled our own. My not-too grosse patate husband topped his poutine with triple grade AAA steak, roasted red pepper, mushrooms, soft goat cheese and three pepper sauce. Although he could’ve done with more of the tasty meat, everything else was just the right combo and blend for him.

I chose sweet potato fries (the only potato option they don’t hand cut on the premises), with brie, onions, green peppers and a red wine sauce. The fries retained their shape and crisp beautifully (where not too sauced), a rarity with sweet potatoes. The brie and onions were particularly good together.

But Poutineville does serve more than just pooters. There are burgers, sandwiches and appetizers. For instance, we also shared meaty chicken wings and a bounteous warm salad with spinach, goat cheese and various marinated eggplant and mushrooms. Although a bit vinegary and spicy for a salad, it felt good to get heaping amounts of greens in a place that also offers a "Crise cardiaque" – five pounds of artery clogging fries, meats and cheeses plus some veggies. Don’t worry, you’re allowed to share. And chances are you’ll skip dessert.

Poutineville
1365 Ontario East; 514-419-5444
1384 Beaubien East; 514-544-8800
Meal for two: $30-$45
www.poutineville.com

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