Tucked between Montreal’s Mont Royal park and Little Italy in the neighborhood of Mile End is a small café with a big vision: to support local flower growers, makers, and designers. Le Butterblume is part boutique, part restaurant, and 100 percent young Montreal.
Le Butterblume’s artisanal ethos fits perfectly into Mile End, a neighborhood of Quebecois clothing designers (who sew onsite), vintage record shops, furniture stores, boutiques, bars, and cafes.
Photography by Christin Geall except where noted.
Friends and owners Nadine Boudreau and Julie Romano designed the interior of Le Butterblume themselves, commissioning tables and shelving from Montreal woodworker Jérôme Lavoie and lighting from local designer Hamster.
Le Butterblume serves the early set, opening for breakfast, brunch, and lunch. Chef/owner Jens Ruoff makes the restaurant’s homemade bread, yogurt, and pastries. Herbs feature heavily in his cooking and no detail is too small: a drizzle of parsley oil, a smidgen of garlic flower pesto, a sprinkling of snipped chives.
Innovative open sandwiches, egg dishes, and soups featuring fresh regional ingredients give the café a farm-to-table focus. When I visited, the French love for (and refinement of) sauces was in evidence: my radish tartine had a piquant green sauce more reminiscent of watercress or vichyssoise than pesto. My son’s pork ravioli were served floating in chicken dashi and had a touch of allspice, a distinct flavoring popular in the province.
The farm-to-table theme and devotion to craftsmanship extends to the small boutique which features local produced aprons, plants, pottery, and cut flowers.
“I wanted to offer customers the option of a single stem or a big bouquet,” said owner Julie Romano. “I love flowers. And people enjoy choosing their own favorites.” Butterblume sources flowers solely from Quebec flower farm On Origine.
N.B.: Planning a trip to Montreal? See more of our favorite shops:
- Handmade Kids’ Furniture from Objets Mécaniques in Montreal on Remodelista.
- Les Touilleurs: A Kitchen Emporium in Montreal on Remodelista.