As far as I know, there are only two places known as La Croissanterie in Montreal, though they each have a very different vibe. The one I immediately think of as the “real” Croissanterie is downtown, just off St-Marc, and is apparently known to locals as Café Linda despite the “Croissanterie” emblazoned on their green awning. The second is called La Croissanterie Figaro, and is located just off Parc Avenue on Fairmount in Outremont. I’ve only ordered croissants at Figaro, so technically, I suppose the “real” croissanterie title should go to them.
I just happen to like Café Linda better, for whatever reason.
Actually, there are several reasons, including:
1. They’re downtown, and therefore easily accessible in between Concordia meet-ups and work, or vice-versa.
2. They’re super cheap. Great when you are on a Shoestring in Montreal!
3. Their coffee is quite good. And did I mention it’s cheap?
4. They have free wireless internet, so it’s a good place to get some work done.
5. Several of their tables are made out of ancient sewing machines, with those big metal foot pedals that you have to pump to make it work. Old skool!
6. The vibe is one of laid-back nonchalance. The staff are very polite and will bring your order to your table; they’ll also let you pay when you’re ready to leave, anticipating that you’re going to stay for a while and rack up a bill. Which you probably will, because of reasons 1 through 5!
La Croissanterie Figaro, however, is no slouch. They’ve got a much more upscale vibe to them, what with the marble-topped café tables, the polished brass, and the Parisian bistro look. I do believe they also have an authentic espresso machine, which you have to know how to work to make a good cup of coffee, rather than the push-button ultra-modern dealies that Starfucks uses.
Plus, they make great croissants! I usually order a chocolatine and/or an almondine, along with a latté in the morning, which makes a great breakfast on the go. If you’ve got the chance to linger, definitely try one of their croissanwiches, very much like the French favourite, the Croque Monsieur. Decadent and delicious!
FAVES: lattés, chocolatines, almondines
ADDRESS: La Croissanterie/Café Linda – St-Catherine West (downtown Montreal), La Croissanterie Figaro – 5200 Hutchison (Outremont)
METRO: Guy / Place-des-Arts
PHONE: 514-932-2604 / 514-278-6567