The Hunt for Poutine

Poutine 1

Photo: tadatop.com

So maybe the title of this post is a bit of an exaggeration. It wasn’t exactly a hunt since I only went to one restaurant. But I am going to try to find the best poutine in Boston this summer. It is one of the dishes I wouldn’t touch when I was younger because of how it looked, but fell in love with once I did.

Poutine is a French-Canadian dish that consists of hand-cut fries topped with a thick, dark brown gravy (the Quebecois version is barbecue chicken, or so I’ve read) and white cheddar cheese curds. The traditional dish only contains those three things but different versions are a bit more colorful with toppings ranging from meats to vegetables and not always with gravy and cheese curds (which makes them more like loaded fries).

For some reason, I was under the impression that All-Star Sandwich bar in Cambridge was the only place that served poutine in the area so I went there. They make their dish with a light gravy (that tasted like either chicken or turkey though I could be wrong) and top it with scallions. It was middle of the road for me – I’ve had better but I’ve definitely had worse. The color of the gravy threw me off a bit at first but it tasted good, the fries seemed a little too thin for the gravy, and the cheese curds had no taste on their own, although I honestly can’t remember if they used to. Overall not bad but I decided that, for me, it was okay if I was really craving poutine but not so much otherwise.

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Further research showed that I was very wrong as this isn’t the only restaurant in Boston with the dish. The problem is that a quick search for poutine in Boston will bring up a list of restaurants but not all of them still have it on their menu. So far, I know Saus in downtown Boston, The Beehive, The Gallows, and The Lower Depths (where tater tots are used) all serve it, and I’m excited to try.

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