Maison Publique, Montréal
Derek Dammann has created the sort of restaurant he is all about…democratic and fun, delicious and fresh, thoughtful and sustainable.
Maison Publique Chef Dammann, seen here at the left with his U of Guelph Innovation Award, is revisiting the past, but as usual, his eye is on the horizon. He might laugh, with a finger tip his sunglasses to sit atop his ginger-coloured hair, wink and quote another famous Montrealer, “Just watch me!”
The history of the public house in Canada goes back centuries. They were road houses, station stops and inns. Many of us remember the time when there was an entrance for Men Only and another for Ladies & Escorts. They were/are gathering places…no reservations…real local hangouts. And that’s precisely what Dammann is heading. His food, in many respects, is the future.
Not only is he a master of charcuterie, he is as close to an expert in Canadian wine as you’ll find in Quebec. The pinot from Flat Rock Cellars in Niagara was perfect with the cured and peppered beef . Hailing from Campbell River, B.C., the ‘salmon capital of the world’, he’s also well versed in the finest seafood. His pickled herring are the best I’ve ever tasted.
For Dammann ”local” means “Canadian” and because he has cooked across the country, he knows the great hidden ingredients. His passion and his talent are astounding. He aims for 90% Canadian content.
He writes: “I take great pride in serving sustainably grown and harvested produce, meats and seafood ‘because food tastes better when its ingredients are the product of thoughtful stewardship.’ I have a whole animal philosophy at DNA and will always have one or two dishes featuring offal on the menu because it preserves an overlooked part of our culinary heritage.”
He wrote about his 2017 offering… “The menu was entirely east coast this year and it was a fun one. We served everything as snacks/sharing to showcase the bounty of the season and not to overwhelm guests with too much food. Kept it really toned down and simple.”
Maison Publique is one of about 250 restaurants which are taking part in Food Day Canada. Head to the corner of Gifford and Marquette in Montreal to join the party.
Maison Publique est l’un des 250 restaurants à travers tout le Canada qui participent au Journée des terroirs.
4720, rue Marquette (coin Gilford)
Montréal, QC, H2J 3Y6
T: (514) 507-0555