Dozens of restaurants participated in this food festival dedicated to one of the best comfort foods
Mac n Cheese Week was back for another year with dozens of participating restaurants in Montreal, Quebec City and Toronto. The participants took Mac n Cheese to the next level with their interesting takes on the basic dish. Our writers got to try a selection of them.
Deville puts a unique spin on many of their dishes, and that is not limited to their crispy Mac n Cheese wonton entrée. It comes with five crunchy, deep-fried wontons with a side of diablo marinara sauce. The wontons had the perfect amount of crisp to them, and they didn’t crumble apart with every bite, making them easy to eat. Inside was a saucy, light Mac n Cheese. It was creamy and smooth in texture as opposed to really cheesy. However, be warned—the taste of the cut up shallots inside will really take over your tastebuds. Some moments it felt like that was all I tasted, which was a downfall for me. That being said, be prepared for crazy onion breath afterwards. The diablo sauce really packs in the heat, so if you’re a weakling when it comes to spiciness like myself, dip your wontons sparingly. The entrée doesn’t leave you completely full, so I would recommend a second entrée to accompany it. Though advertised for this food festival, the entrée is part of their permanent menu.
By Cristina Sanza
Les Enfants Terribles
“Attention, c’est chaud!” the waitress said to me before handing me an enormous brown paper bag with a small aluminum container in it to go. I left Les Enfants Terribles with elation as I was about to devour a very simple-sounding yet appealing Mac n Cheese. I was trying to imagine how a combination of homemade cheese sauce, poutine cheese (which we can only assume are melted cheese curds), kale, bacon and macaroni would melt warmly in my mouth. When I got home, I opened the container and to my great disappointment found that a small portion took up roughly a third of the container. As I started eating, I immediately found that the combination of cheese and kale was too sharp and bitter. The bacon was completely lost in the other flavours. Overall, it was underwhelming and I felt dejected that I had just paid roughly $15 plus tip for something that was simply unsatisfying.
By Andrej Ivanov
My local grocery store
“The lighting in the grocery store is absolutely appalling,” I murmur to myself as I make a quick dash through the maze of aisles. I search for what seems like hours just to find the treasure I had been yearning for all week long: Kraft Dinner. I snatch a box and run to the cash. I arrive home and sit in my dimly lit kitchen, analyzing the contents of the box, just as Gollum idolized the one ring of power. I then begin the painstaking process of making this delicacy. Fumes of processed cheese and petrochemicals soon fill my nostrils as I watch the orange liquid boil viciously in the pot. I sit impatiently waiting for my precious dinner to finish cooking. Seduced by the orange glow, I grab a fork and begin to devour the food in a savage fashion. Unable to contain my joy, tears stream down my face. This is Mac n Cheese Week. Satisfaction at last.
By David Easey
Tucked away in the quickly gentrifying borough of Griffintown is a mean caesar and Mac n Cheese, which everyone needs to try. Forget the rest of the tasty frittatas, French toasts, and fruit this sunny café offers, hit that brunch menu with the sole intent of having a steaming plate of Mac n Cheese. It’s served up with a fried egg, several slices of bacon and a handful of arugula—just to make sure you get some green in your diet. This cheesy bad boy packs a punch with aged cheddar curds from l’Île-aux-Grues, swiss gruyere and local Bierbrier beer. The macaroni noodles are broken up by a generous helping of curds and crumbling the bacon also adds a salty crunch throughout. Paired with a gin caesar on a sunny Sunday morning is about as close to cheese heaven as Quebecers can hope to achieve. Luckily this is a steady feature on the café’s menu.
By Michelle Gamage
Le Cheese Truck is one the founders of Mac n Cheese Week. Their Mac n Cheese was a Sriracha Fried Chicken Mac. It contained three things I love: cheese, sriracha sauce and chicken! It is made with roasted cauliflower, sweet green peas, homemade béchamel sauce, sriracha, bread crumbs, flour, chicken and Louis d’Or cheese. There were five pieces of fried chicken covered with sriracha sauce layered over the Mac n Cheese. The quantity of sriracha might be too much for someone who’s not a fan of spicy food but I loved it. There was just enough chicken as well—more pieces would have been overkill. The Mac n Cheese is extremely rich by itself. The béchamel sauce was heavenly and synced perfectly with the cheese. It was hot, cheesy and delicious. It was quite filling but I managed to finish my plate. I don’t often give perfect grades for dishes but this Mac n Cheese deserves it.
By Nicole Yeba