I had lunch at l’Espace MC Chef. A 7” pastrami/cheddar sandwich with oomph! It wasn’t the whole grain mustard, or the fact that she used arugula instead of regular greens that first caught my attention, but a homemade grilled eggplant mash. “I got the idea from a little Italian place nearby Marché Jean-Talon, Café ViaDante” says award-winning Chef and owner, Marie-Chantal Lepage. “I’m glad you like it; I made it with love.” That’s exactly why I’m excited about my sandwich and l’Espace MC Chef, because she creates even the simplest dishes with love.
It left a smile in my mouth.
l’Espace is located on the corner of De la Montagne and Dalhousie Streets in the Old Port of Quebec City, exactly where Le Café du Monde used to be before it moved to its current location.
Chef Lepage’s project is divided into three phases. Phase one, currently opened, offers pastries, coffee and some of Chef Lepage’s signature jellies and butter. She currently collaborates with pastry artisan Éric Borderon, a master in his art. Best slice of carrot cake I have had in my life thus far; 34 years to this exact date. (not from Borderon– she couldn’t remember who!)
Phase two and three are set to open before then end of the year. “We are looking into late October for phase two, if all goes accordingly, we’ll be able to cater meals for Christmas,” says Chef Lepage.
A “U” formed cooking table where Chef Lepage herself will offer cooking classes, a tasting area, for both wine and food as well as a culinary boutique will make up of the rest of l’Espace MC Chef. And, pssssssst. She collects wooden spoons from her travels. She’s thinking about exposing them too. Yé!
I guarantee my name on the list of attendees for those cooking classes. Chef Marie-Chantal Lepage had Serge Bruyere and Joel Robuchon as mentors. eh!
Oh and by the way, l’Espace is pronounced MC Chef, for Marie-Chantal, NOT McChef. She seems pretty serious about it.
More pictures on the Foodie in Quebec City Facebook page.