The Bulletin: Are you phoning it in just before the holidays? [Issue #56]

The Bulletin is a collection of what's happened, what’s happening, and what’s to come in and around Montreal.

The Main

The Main

December 21, 2023- Read time: 7 min
The Bulletin: Are you phoning it in just before the holidays? [Issue #56]Just when we need to be getting ready to be around loved ones, hosting parties, and eating our fill, we might already have had enough. | Photograph: Gratis Graphics

Feel like you're running out of time before the holidays start? If you're like us, working up until the weekend means using what scraps of time you have left in the evening to pick up groceries for family dinners, buy gifts, clean, cook, maybe keep the kids busy, and maybe—just maybe—find time to socialize.

That's time anxiety talking, a common psychological condition that'll make you feel rushed, stressed out, and anxious about time. It's the fear of being late, the fear of not having enough time to do things, or the fear of not being able to control time—but it's normal.

Don't check out. This is the home stretch, and we've put together a selection of events, openings, and more to help you kick back.

Before you know it, you'll be reading our last edition of the year that'll be full of NYE recommendations. Stay tuned, and until then, take it easy when you can.

Last chance for the holidays

Shopping here is shopping local: Support locals, keep cash in the community, connect with artists in your city, and put some amazing artwork on the walls of someone you love. Every purchase also helps to support our editorial content moving forward. (The Main)

Montreal Fine Art Prints and Local Goods | The Main Dépanneur
Montreal Fine Art Prints and Local Goods | The Main Dépanneur

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Activities, parties, points of interest, art exhibitions, you name it: These are the weekend events you don't want to miss.



  • The 3rd edition of the Grand Marché de Noël is reaching its peak in downtown Montreal, where some forty local craftsmen and producers collect in one spot.
  • Star players of the biggest improv leagues in Quebec are competing in a match without rules at Le Punch Club over at La Sala Rossa.
  • Take part in a holiday tradition that dates back centuries: Handel's iconic Messiah, in concert at Maison symphonique de Montréal.
  • Looking for something chill? Librairie Saga Bookstore invites people to bring a book, a drink of choice, and a good mood for their Sip & Read event.


  • Rediscover the music from the classic film "Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown!" performed by a jazz trio of musicians at the Rialto Theatre.
  • A vast, immersive, seven-channel video installation—the culmination of artist Jeremy Shaw’s work of the last few years—Phase Shifting Index is an exhilarating, para-scientific at Fonderie Darling.


Photograph: @estellemtl / Instagram


Scope the latest restaurant openings, recommendations on where to eat, plus new menus, old classics, and everything in between.

New to Montreal’s collective table

Time to take stock of all the best new restaurants in Montreal: With a lack of tourists in town, winter can be a slow season in the city, but it also gives a lot of restauranteurs a chance to softly open new projects worth a bite. (The Main)

The best new restaurants in Montreal [Dec 2023]
You want ‘em, the city’s got ’em: These are all the new restaurants in Montreal you should get a taste of right now.
  • A new Italian restaurant, Estelle, has taken over the space that was once home to Grumman 78. Exceedingly new, no details have been shared other than that it's open.
  • Speaking of Saint-Henri, the neighbourhood's got a new French café with Un Instant en Provence, selling all the greatest culinary hits and then some.
  • Our current obsession is this Instagram account that features staff meals served inside of Montreal's restaurants.
  • Pointe-Saint-Charles restaurant Shushuto has added a Japanese brunch to its offerings, and it's unlike most on the market right now.
  • Tinc Set's doing a Saturday special of calamari bocadillos with a glass of Catalan wine for $25.
  • On Dec 22, Denise is doing a grand finale before the holidays with a Japanese-style Christmas feast featuring fried chicken, potato salad, and cake.
  • Mitch Deli is selling a bunch of last-minute gifts—30% off wine take-outs, tote bags, t-shirts, crewnecks, gift certificates—plus a few surprises on the menu.

How do you do, fellow chefs?

What goes into creating a menu at Montreal's restaurants? Where do the ideas behind their dishes begin and end? We listened in to Montreal's chefs on where their menu creation begins, and what their philosophies of food are. (The Main)

The creative process behind the menus of Montreal’s chefs
Listening in to Montreal’s chefs on where their menu creation begins, and what their philosophies of food are.

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Here, you'll find a weekly round-up of the latest local news, from entertainment to current affairs and more; if you want more stories, check out our city feed.

Get yer shots! 💉

Quebec Health Minister Christian Dubé and his chief public health officer warned Tuesday that the province is facing a major COVID-19 resurgence, coupled with a spike in influenza cases. (Montreal Gazette)

One million Quebecers infected with respiratory viruses
COVID and flu waves hit while ERs are overcrowded and understaffed.

In the thick(et) of it

As you read this, Phil Quinn’s eponymous farm out in L’Île-Perrot is fresh out of spots for visitors to cut down their own Christmas trees, and they’re close to being sold out—if not sold out already. The industry's experiencing massive changes in supply, so we asked a farm to find out how. (The Main)

Ferme Quinn: Farming DTC Christmas trees on the edges of the city
The Christmas tree industry’s experiencing massive changes in supply—we caught up with a farm that’s out there growing and chopping to find out how.

Now imagine a hotel was built on the mountain

The Montreal Casino will soon have an on-site luxury hotel. Set to open in three years, it will have 200 rooms and comes with a $150-million price tag, fitting in with the city's plan to revitalize Parc Jean-Drapeau, but some say it'll disrupt the island's tranquility. (CBC Montreal)

Loto-Québec to build hotel next to Montreal Casino | CBC News
The Montreal Casino will soon have an on-site luxury hotel, but critics say this contributes to the privatization of public space and could hinder green space protection.

A new, 45,000 square-foot museum

Construction on the new Montreal Holocaust Museum has begun. Work is expected to continue until the end of 2025, with the official inauguration planned for early 2026 at 3535 Saint-Laurent Blvd. in the Plateau. (CTV News)

Construction begins on new Montreal Holocaust Museum
Work has begun on the new Montreal Holocaust Museum, with the official inauguration planned for early 2026.

Not the kind of art theft you'd expect

A work by sculptor Charles Daudelin recently disappeared from its base at the Mont-Royal metro station, a vertical strip of textured aluminum dating back to 1966, embedded in the brown brick walls of the station. (La Presse)

Photograph: Martin Tremblay / La Presse

And that wraps yet another weekly bulletin. We’ll be back with more curiosities, local stories, and events to discover next week.

If ever you catch something we should know, don't hesitate to reach out to us on Instagram.