In December 2013, Carlos Ferreira invited the Montreal food press to his iconic Ferreira Café on Peel Street for a major announcement: the famous chef-owner had decided to pass the mantle to João Dias, a young Portuguese chef almost fresh off the plane. Showcasing the new chef’s modern take on traditional Portuguese dishes, guests were treated to Sea urchin, Senegal shrimp and clam pastry cream, Seated cod duo cooked in olive oil, and Striped bass flown in from Portugal. A whole counter of the private dining room was piled with fresh fish that had literally been swimming off Portugal a mere two days ago. In case you were wondering, yep, I love my job.
Does this mean Carlos Ferreira is retiring? Far from it, since the famous chef took the opportunity to launch a new line of red, white, rosé and sparkling F wines from his very own vineyard in Portugal—a childhood dream come true. Dotting the table were bottles of olive oil, also produced by and for the chef. All are available at the restaurant’s online boutique.
Last week saw another piece of good news as the Ferreira team launched its new Vasco da Gama café in the public area of Pierre-Elliott-Trudeau Airport. Food lovers are told to expect a refined menu hand-picked among the restaurant’s most popular dishes, served morning, noon and night. It will even be possible to cross customs with your gourmet booty. After surviving bad muffins and sandwiches, and paying through the nose for bottled water as I waited for some flight or other, here’s hoping PET Airport will greet more establishments celebrating Montreal’s growing reputation as a world food destination. Bom apetite!