Café Chiado 28: A one way bus ride to Lisbon.

The last two weeks have been quite hectic – we’ve been working late, travelling, attending networking events and sleeping when we can. It’s gotten to the point where we need to plan a few weeks in advance just to grab a coffee together (sad, we know). Nonetheless, after a short hiatus, things have finally calmed down and we are back to business as usual. Seeing as we were both in desperate need of bromance, we decided to meet up in the middle of the week at Café Chiado 28, a Portuguese cafe-bistro.

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Cafe Ferlucci : The next generation of Italian coffee.

“It’s moments like this where I wish I had a pancake lens.”, Joey said.

“If you don’t hurry up you’re going to look like a pancake. I can see a car coming.”, David replied.

We were back in Villeray and Joey was sitting in the middle of the street, trying take a picture of Paroisse Saint-Cecile, while David nervously watched for oncoming traffic.

Joey: “Ok, got it!”

David: “Was it really worth almost dying over a picture?”

Joey: “Bro, have a little faith.”

David: “Can we go get coffee now? I’m dying here.”

David was right. It was almost 11AM and we hadn’t had our caffeine fix yet. There was just something about this neighborhood that grabbed our attention. Between its vibrant art murals, tucked-away alleys and quaint shops; Villeray is much like a small village within a big city. We slowly made our way down De Castelneau Street, until we reached Cafe Ferlucci, a small neighborhood cafe with a growing reputation.      

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Tommy: location, location, location.

Real-Estate brokers, investors and successful business owners will tell you time and time again that location is everything. Whether you want to start your own legal practice or open a “cat friendly” cafe, choosing the right location can mean the difference between feast or famine. One of the most sought after areas in the city of Montreal is the Old Port, which attracts millions of people each year. It is known for its many restaurants, terraces and boutiques. It is also the site of such key architectural structures as Montreal City Hall, the Palais de Justice de Montréal, the Quebec Court of Appeal and the Notre-Dame Basilica. For locals, it’s a great place to go out on a date or  enjoy a casual stroll while soaking up the European inspired architecture. For tourists, it’s an opportunity to take advantage of the many street performances and visit Montreal’s oldest historical sites. 

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Café Crème Fleury : Like father, like daughter.

In high school we are told to choose a career for the rest of our lives, when most of us can’t even decide what we want for dinner. Through trial and error, we eventually find our calling. Some of us fall into it, while others are thrown into it. This decision can be even more difficult to make when your family owns a business. It would be the understatement of the year to say that running a successful business is hard; especially being in Quebec where we are limited by language laws and higher tax rates. All that risk, hard work, and continual pressure to stay above rising costs isn’t for the faint of heart. You need thick skin to be in business and even thicker skin to be successful at it. Diandra Alzani was born into a family that knows coffee. Through her innovative ideas and modern approach she has succeeded in taking her family business to the next level: Le Café Crème 2.0.

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Ciociaro Sports Bar & Grill: Where everybody knows your name.

Let’s be honest: coffee is cool. Do you know what’s even cooler? Posting pictures of coffee on the internet. With the advent of Facebook, Instagram and other social media platforms, the food scene in general has become a worldwide obsession. Many of us can’t resist taking pictures of our food before we actually taste it (guilty as charged). Just the other day, we were having lunch together and we witnessed a woman shamelessly take various shots of what seemed to be a sliced avocado and three cherry tomatoes. It was strange, to say the least…

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Cafe Gentile Westmount: Once upon a time in Canada

Life can get pretty busy sometimes, and this past Saturday was no exception. Between our regular household chores, visiting the tailor and picking up a dozen zeppole for San Giuseppe, we both had our hands full and decided to reschedule our morning bromance to later that afternoon. As we zipped down the highway in the bromance mobile, we reminisced about how simple life was in our early twenties. Back then, there were no full time jobs, mortgages or life insurance policies. Our biggest concern was whether we were going to eat pizza or 2$ chow mein after leaving the club at 3 AM. Perhaps our fathers were right when they said: “enjoy it now, while you still can.” When we finally reached Westmount and walked into the new Cafe Gentile location, we were shocked to see how busy it was.

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Cafe Dei Campi: lait de vache, d’amande ou de soya?

Have you ever walked into a cafe and said to yourself: there’s something in the air, the vibe, the food, and the people? That’s what the dynamic duo felt this past Saturday on a blisteringly cold morning. Whenever it gets cold like this we think of when our grandparents emigrated from Southern Italy, and if only they could have sold that extra cow to pay for a boat ticket to Australia; life could have been very different…

Anyhow back to our Canadian reality… Dei Campi translates into Deschamps, which is the last name of the extremely talented pastry chef, wife and co-owner behind this Rosemont gem. Together with her charming husband Nick, Isabelle cranks out some seriously decadent vegan desserts. Have we converted to veganism? Time to find out:

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We didn’t choose the cafe life, the cafe life chose us.

It might be a combination of factors which led us to the creation of this blog. Aside from our passion for coffee, there is a certain familiarity that we enjoy every time we set foot into a cafe. Our first memories in cafes were forged in our youth with our fathers and grandfathers, both in Italy and in Montreal. In many European countries, stopping by your local cafe for a quick espresso or cappuccino is part of a daily routine. The whole European experience is quite different from the fast-food Americanized coffee chains we’re familiar with in North America. Cafes are meant for social gatherings; a quick pit stop before starting your day, a place to discuss sports, politics or anything else for that matter. After a while, the barista becomes your go-to guy, an underpaid psychologist of sorts.

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