Weekend Road Trip to Montreal and to see Dennis Franks!

I can’t wait for more adventures with more friends next time!

About two weekends ago, our team set out in a small fleet of cars on a journey to the east (lol) to Montreal because one of our mentors in the business was hosting a training.  After meeting at McDonalds so that some people could fill up on a morning breakfast (I ate at home), we were off.  

Our car selfie to Montreal! 🙂

The other car selfies to Montreal! 🙂

A picture inside Don’s Fish & Chips while we waited for our food

We started driving around 9:20 a.m. for 2 hours and a half before we stopped for lunch at noon at a fish and chips place called Don’s Fish & Chips in Brockville.  This place was absolutely delicious!!  I blogged about it here. 🙂

 

It was quite gloomy as we drove to the land of poutine and smoked meat

After that, we continued driving and had some pit stops before we arrived in Montreal at around 2:30 p.m. in the afternoon.  Thank you to all the drivers who braved the 5-6 hours of driving to get us all safely there! ^_^ We arrived at Hotel Espresso and checked in.

Arrived to Hotel Espresso! They actually have an expresso machine in their lobby that you can get a drink from

At the hotel, we lounged around and rested before we headed out for dinner.  We also did our checks for the week for our partners!  Wifi wasn’t very good in the hotel unfortunately.

Chilling in the room

Finishing the smoked meat sandwiches and taking a picture of the restaurants from across the street: goal for next visit 😛

For dinner, Eric, Melody, and I headed first to Schwartz’s for smoked meat sandwiches and to get a table for the group.  It was delicious!  It’s hard to say that you’ve been to Montreal if you’re a foodie and haven’t tried out the smoked meat at this world-famous spot.  Lucky for me, it was my second visit there. 😛

At night, we visited Vanier College campus where our mentor Dennis Franks was speaking for the first time in Montreal, Canada.  Our business recently expanded to Montreal in the middle of this year, so having Dennis speak was a big deal.  There were a lot of people!  We also got to take pictures with him one on one. 🙂

After the presentation, Eric, Melody, and I headed to Decarie Hot Dog where we got to try the Montreal “steamie” hot dogs and poutine!  Poutine is also a must when you visit Montreal so I’m thankful that we got to have some fries, cheese curds, and gravy goodness before we returned to our hotel for the night. 🙂

Vanier College auditorium

That night, I struggled to get wifi working in our hotel room (there were 6 of us girls sharing a room), so I actually went out into the hallway for a bit to get better signal lol.

Breakfast buffet at Restaurant La Perle Blue inside Hotel Espresso. $11.95 for one person

Delicious!! I loved these scrambled eggs. They scrambled them right!

Pretty pink mini Christmas tree inside the Evo building

It was an early morning on the Saturday and it was a full day training.  (First, we had some breakfast classics from the breakfast buffet in the restaurant of the hotel.  I really enjoyed their scrambled eggs!)  The way that Dennis Franks trained us was different from the other mentors that we’ve had so it was interesting to see how he approached things.  I liked how he really incorporated audience interaction into the day by asking various people from the crowd to share their experiences.

For lunch, we ate at Cafe Noir in the same building.

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Another chance to learn!

Group shot of our team and VIPs before we left 🙂

After the training that day, we headed right away to our chalet in Mont Tremblant!  We were going to have a big hot pot dinner party!  It was awesome that we were able to get two chalet houses right across from each other.  The chalet house was huge and so nice!  It smelled like oak when we all stepped in and there was a real fireplace too! 🙂

Arrival at our chalet!

Beautiful rooms, fragrant oak smell, and really nice “rainfall shower” heads!

Fireplace

Look at all the food we got!

We all chipped in to help prep for our mega hot pot dinner.  We had four pots going that night!  It’s hard to describe this experience because the hot pot that night was especially tasty and fulfilling.  It was so good to eat with each other as a big family and have so much tasty food too.  We had so much variety and thank you to those who went out grocery shopping to buy all of the food for us. :0)  We had everything from fish balls, beef balls, lobster balls, fish tofu, imitation crab meat, raw beef, raw lamb, udon, a lot of veggies, drinks, and a fantastic “sauce station” as well.  I think my food tasted especially good that night because I had a lot of sesame oil and sriracha hot sauce in my sauce bowl lol.  It was amazing!! 😀

Amazing hot pot night! Look at our “sauce station” too! 😀

One of the best hot pots I’ve ever had ^_^

We had four boiling hot pots going

The chalet did have working wifi but I think it didn’t really connect us until the next morning.  In the morning, we had pancakes, scrambled eggs, and sausages!  Delicious!!  Again, thank you to everyone who prepped and cooked for us. 😀  We also cooked some of the leftover hot pot food too.

The next morning breakfast at the chalet

A nice relaxing morning (with wifi) 🙂

Breakfast selfie

A warning sign before our hike…

We had planned on a hiking trip but due to a sign in French that warned of danger, we turned around and relaxed back at the chalet instead.  Some of the guys also cooked up the rest of the remaining hot pot food.  Delish! 😀

At the same time, the guys found the outdoor jacuzzi behind the chalet house and hopped in for some fun and bubbles (if we had all known the chalet included a jacuzzi, we would have all brought our swimsuits too!).  Also, it reminds me of the chalet during the DiSCOVER 2013 retreat that had an outdoor jacuzzi too.

I used Google Translate to see what the sign in French said 😛

Our amazing “snack”/lunch of the night’s leftovers. Thank chefs!

Bubbles and jacuzzi fun

Alas, it was time to head home.  We stopped by the town in Mont Tremblant for a few pictures first.  It was very nice there.  It actually wasn’t too cold during this time of the year either; about -1 C or so.

This is what the chalet looked like from the outside. It looks smaller than what the interior actually was

A final selfie before we left

Beautiful afternoon

A brief stop at the town

Our last stop before arriving home was in Ottawa where we had BeaverTails!  Based on my blog post about the experience, you can see how grateful and content I was to be able to share six toppings of BeaverTails with the foodies.  Yay! 🙂

Arriving in Ottawa for a brief sweet snack!

And there you have it.  Another nice road trip and getaway.  I’m thankful for our team and the experiences that we get to have together.  If it weren’t for the desire to keep learning and improving ourselves, we shouldn’t have taken this road trip all the way to Montreal to learn from Dennis Franks and have great foodie adventures.  I can’t wait for the next trip! 🙂

Wow! What a sunset!

It was a huge pink cloud!!

Lastly, ending off with a video of the sunset: 🙂

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About stenoodie

I'm a stenographer, foodie, avid traveller, and a really silly person if you get to know me well enough. =)
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3 Responses to Weekend Road Trip to Montreal and to see Dennis Franks!

  1. Pingback: Hot Pot on Yonge Chinese Cuisine | stenoodie

  2. gchan7127 says:

    Wow! The Chalet looks amazing!! OMG! AND THE FOOD. HOLY SHIT.

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