As most of our Canadian readers know, there is one culinary masterpiece that is distinctly Canadian—poutine. There has been a bit of confusion about poutine lately. One restaurant in Dublin was boycotted because people thought the restaurant was serving a dish named after Putin. You can read about that here: Poutine or Putin?
Just to set the record straight—poutine is a glorious, to-die-for comfort food. In the U.S., it is often pronounced “poo-teen.” The correct pronunciation, as this writer points out, is “pootan” with emphasis on the “poo.” So you can see how the uninitiated might mistake it for the autocrat in Russia.
I have to admit that I am a connoisseur of all things comfortable, including comfort food. Here in the U.S., that means mac and cheese, mashed potatoes and gravy, and In-N-Out burgers. In Canada, the gooey, flavorful and comforting food that tops the list is poutine. Invented in Quebec, it is a glowing mass of french fries and cheese curds smothered in gravy. There are many variations, but this is the traditional way.
Finding poutine in the U.S.
Where do you find poutine—and I mean good poutine— in the U.S.? I did a bit of research and have a list of a few places that I plan to visit on my road trips. Working my way west to east, here’s what I found:
- Seattle, WA – The Angry Beaver. Now this is my kind of place! It is a restaurant/bar dedicated to hockey and poutine.
- Gilbert, AZ – The American Poutine Co. Food truck and delivery only. I don’t know if poutine can rightly be called “American,” but this menu looks awesome!
- Denver, CO – Au Feu Brasserie. Mostly a French brasserie, but it does have poutine on the menu.
- Austin, TX – Banger’s Sausage House & Beer Garden. This place will crash any diet you are on. The menu is laden with comfort food.
- Detroit, MI – Brooklyn Street Local. Located in Corktown. Poutine and other good comfort foods.
- Ft. Lauderdale/Dania Beach, FL – Dairy Belle. Owned by Quebecois ex-pats, it has a huge menu.
- Brooklyn, NY – Mile End Deli. They even have poutine Olympics!
- Portland, ME – Duckfat Frites Shack. With a name like that, it must be good!
Heading to La Belle Province?
Now, if you are up in Maine, you might consider taking a trip north to neighboring Quebec and Montreal. Timing it to hit “La Poutine Week” would be a bonus! (Missed it for 2022, unfortunately.) There is a long list of excellent poutine restos, but here are two to get you started:
- La Belle Province – A chain featuring poutine, smoked meat and other great comfort foods. There are many locations throughout Quebec.
- Montreal – La Banquise. Considered by many to be the best poutine restaurant in Canada, it has a huge selection. Located in metro Montreal. This is a restaurant I have eaten at and I highly recommend it.
There is a new option from a website called Goldbelly. Goldbelly ships food from many high-end restaurants to your door and one of those restaurants is Poutine Bros. Say no more!
If you know of a good place to get good poutine, please share here in the comments or on my Forum here.