Don't you just love the smell and sound of Grand Prix in the morning?
Our annual high octane weekend has arrived once more. A time when people cruise the streets in their collectibles and flood downtown terrasses, and when the jet-set tourist cash flows for race-themed parties and bottles of Dom Perignon to spray on crowds in between pounds of lobster, caviar, steaks, and truffles.
Those who love it can't get enough, and those who don't have their reasons why not.
Wherever you land on that spectrum, times like this remind us that there's such thing as the paradox of hedonism around the pursuit of pleasure: Constant pleasure-seeking may not yield the most actual pleasure or happiness one can have in a lifetime, and consciously pursuing pleasure can actually interfere with experiencing it.
As you'll see below, F1 may be big and beautiful for thousands of people flooding Montreal, but the city's far from defined by this one event. There are fulfilling times to be had no matter the time of the year in this city—this weekend included—and if you're not one to enjoy this one lynchpin summer event, you'll find below plenty to do beyond it.
Choose your adventure and enjoy the ride, literally or proverbially.
Weekend events you don’t want to miss
Not seeing something on the list you think we should know about? Hit us up by Instagram to let us know.
- The first edition of Chợ Đêm MTL, a 4-day Vietnamese street food market and cultural festival, gets underway down in Griffintown.
- Les Francos, the annual music festival for French-language performers from all over the world, wraps up over the course of the weekend.
- Montreal's large international street art celebration MURAL Festival will come to a close as of this Sunday, so get it while the going's good.
- Don't miss Festival sur le Canal, the biggest cultural and community event in the Southwest on the banks of the Lachine Canal.
- MAPPLIGHTS is putting on a live mapping show on top of Danae Brissonnet's mural on the corner of Saint-Laurent and Marie-Anne. (Saturday, too.)
- The Cure is performing at the Bell Centre with a show that's notoriously kept cheap. Tickets start at $31, believe it or not.
- If you love rock, you're going to want to see local act No Waves at l'Escogriffe Bar Spectacle alongside Gulfer and Valleyheart.
- Siro: A Mirror of the Mind is an interactive media art installation that translates a viewer's brain activity data into real-time visuals and audio.
- Check out a drag show at Les Foufounes Electricques featuring seven various artists performing your favourite punk, emo, metal, hardcore and more.
- Marché Vintage's pop-up for vintage clothing, jewelry, accessories, home goods and more is setting up shop at Église catholique St-Ambroise.
- Age of Union's new multidisciplinary centre dedicated to the arts and the environment is holding an open house with a featured talk.
- Sandwich-wine hotspot Nita Tout Garni is hosting cider tastings from Domaine Polisson for $20 that includes a take-home glass and a small focaccia.
- The 2023 Montreal Paddle Battle will be underway with varied races by SUP, OC1, Surf ski as well as sprint canoe kayak. Proceeds go to a good cause.
- The Lives of Documents—Photography as Project is the first of a trilogy of projects produced by the CCA on the medium of photography worth seeing.
- There's a beer-soaked F1 party happening at Aux Quartiers Belle Gueule entitled Formule Blanche: All White Day Party. Dress in white!
- Want something serene to do? Check out this 7,000 sq. ft. rooftop garden on the Esplanade Tranquille pavilion shared by three urban agriculture start-ups.
What to eat in and around Montreal
Here's a new section we're trying out, letting you know about new restaurants, menus, terrasse openings—you name it. If you know something you think we should know too, drop us a line on Instagram.
- Pubjelly's got a new chic brunch with vodka-heavy cocktails and dishes that range from Italian-inspired shakshuka to wagyu brekkie sandos.
- Jaja_mtl is now open in the space that once housed Pastaga, led by the team that cooked under Martin Juneau.
- Fugazzi launched a brunch service at their Pointe-Saint-Charles location with pancakes, cacio e pepe omelettes, breakfast pizzas, and more.
- Tickets for Menu Extra's four evenings at Domaine du Nival are on sale as of noon today, where they're cooking twelve-course menus paired with wines of the estate located in the village of Saint-Louis in Montérégie.
- Funky Brunches at W Hotel are underway with set menus and live music every Sunday.
- If you're looking for something classic, dine on the $29 menus on the reopened terrasse at Chez Lévêque, a French institution in Montreal.
What you need to know
ICYMI: A weekly round-up of the latest local news, from food and entertainment to current affairs and more.
We can't even with this
If Bill 31 is passed, homeowners will be able to more easily refuse a lease transfer request from their tenants. Minister France-Élaine Duranceau said it is not up to tenants to control rent increases, and folks are pissed about it. (Montreal Gazette)
A bittersweet 50% off sale
Following headlines in February 2021 when owner Stephen Welch said he was on the verge of closing because his landlord hiked his monthly rent by 150 per cent, the Mile End bookshop has finally decided to close up shop. (CTV News)
An institution reborn
It's been three years since the lights and grills went out at Moishes on the Main. This here's a look inside the transformation of one of the city's most iconic restaurants ahead of its reopening this week in Square Victoria. (Montreal Gazette)
Don't feed the flappy bois
Montreal's main airport is the only one in Canada with its own observation park, but it's now cracking down on picnickers at its plane-spotting park, fearing hungry birds will collide with landing or departing aircraft. Bizarre. (CBC Montreal)
A different kind of census in mind
The need for detailed records of the built environment in Montreal, particularly potential heritage buildings, is all the more urgent following the recent fire at the Bon Pasteur monastery, writes Taylor C. Noakes. (Cult MTL)
I would walk 500 metro lines
After having walked the entire green line last year, writer Camille Dauphinais-Pelletier promised herself that she would do the same with the orange line, the longest in the network. It's now done; here's what she experienced. (24 Heures)
The thorn in a master plan's side
The city doesn’t own all of the streets in the Bridge-Bonaventure sector despite its big plans for the area, and the feds are preparing to sell a portion of one axis that acts as an entranceway to Old Montreal to a real estate developer. Héritage Montréal also chimed in with its own POV. (Montreal Gazette)
Why so dry?
The first store specializing in non-alcoholic beverages in Quebec has opened, and it's here in Montreal: Apéro à Zero boutique on Promenade Ontario offers zero-alcohol wine, gin, rum, and beer. (Journal de Montréal)
🌈 It's in a book, just take a look 📖
Two contemporary wings have been added to the century-old Maisonneuve library that's now completely renovated to adapt it to the real needs of the population of this neighbourhood in Montreal's east end. Take a look inside. (La Presse)
In this episode of The Urbanist, host Paul Logothetis explores the terraces and towers of Montreal’s most famous housing complex, Habitat 67, from angles you won't see from the streetside. (Monocle)
That wraps up this week's edition. We’ll be back with more curiosities, local stories, and events to discover next week.
And if ever you catch something we should know, reach out to us on Instagram.