Poutine is Québec’s national dish, whether we like it or not.
Poutine is a highly caloric combination of fries, cheese and gravy. It is the Quebecois favourite comfort food where every génération has an opinion about quality.
Its origins are debated (Victoriaville or Drummondville?), its ingredients questioned (It’s a heart attack on a plate !?!) and part of many-a-drunken adventures.
Above all pleasures or disgraces in the name of poutine, scientists believe that it can cure a hangover! This reason alone could make poutine the most important dish of Quebec’s culinary heritage.
Just how good is the poutine you’re about to eat? Only local foodies know.
Because I care for authenticity and uniqueness, I have put together a list of Quebec City’s best classic poutines with a focus on individual ingredients: thickness of the sauce and its subtle herb taste, freshness of the cheese curds and crispiness of the fries.
I didn’t take cost into consideration, because when in need of authenticity and quality, I’m very willing to pay an extra dollar. Prices varied between 6 and 8 dollars.
I have tasted poutine in 25 different restaurants, chip stands, bistros and casse-croutes to come up with the most authentic and true-to-tradition classic poutines one can eat in Quebec City. NO SPONSORS!
And as an extra, I’ve also listed some poutines that are worth an extra drive. Because they really are!
Quebec City’s best classic poutines
122 Crémazie Ouest Québec, QC G1R 1X5
Crispy fries and semi-salted fresh cheese curds served with a perfectly balanced sauce that covers everything in a blanket of love. The sauce sticks to the fries like glue while slowly melting it. Not only does Frites Alors! serve the best classic poutine in Quebec City, it is also the best price-to-quality ratio.
–Casse-Croûte Flash-Bourg inc.
21231 Boul. Henri-Bourassa, Québec, QC G2N 1R4
Flashbourg is in the business of making traditional American greasy food since the early 70’s. This family owned and operated business is the pride of Lac-St-Charles. Their classic version of their poutine is very, very good! They chose fresh Kingsey cheese, powder-base meat stock and russet potatoes from Saint-Ubalde in Portneuf. This classic poutine has a perfect ratio of sauce, size, cheese to crisp, creamy fries. Closed from November to March.
109 10e rue Québec, QC G1L 3C2
Pierrot is the best place for a late night poutine with or without your drunken friends. It’s open 24 hours and delivers to any downtown hotel. It has the tastiest and thickest of all gravies tasted! The fries are naturally sweet and well-balanced with the salty, abundant gravy.
332 rue Dorchester Québec, QC G1K 6A2
Every day, thousands of commuters drive by this little 12-seater greasy joint without even knowing it is home to one of Quebec City’s best poutines. It’s where you’ll find the poutine with prominent flavours that stand out in every bite. Expect a generous and thick beef stock and fresh Chaudière cheddar curds.
–Snack Bar Saint-Jean
780, rue Saint-Jean Québec, QC G1R 1P9
The best time of year to enjoy a poutine at Snack Bar St-Jean is during the Festival d’été de Québec. This peppery sauce is served is hot enough to slowly melt the Perron cheese curds. The fries are crisp and have skin. Note that if you eat inside, you’ll smell like cooking oil. I highly recommend you eat on their outdoor patio.
Two poutines definitely worth the drive
La Ferme d’OC-Roulotte du Coin
4495 Chemin Royal, Saint-Famille, QC G0A 3P0
The fries are cooked in duck fat, and the sauce has a touch of foie gras. How can one resist? Unfortunately, it’s only opened in the Summer. Also try their homemade soft drinks and iced tea, you’ll definitely want to thank me on this one. Read my review on La Roulotte du Coin here.
Casse-Croûte Chez Micheline
225 Rte 138, Saint-Augustin QC G3A 1W7
Because it would have made number one on my list if it weren’t for the fact that it is located a few streets outside the Cap-Rouge borough. Chez Micheline has been making poutine for over 48 years and it’s THE best poutine in the greater Quebec City area. It’s located in Saint-Augustin-de-Desmaures, about 15 km from downtown Quebec City. Rent a car, hop on the bus, call a cab, but do have a taste of Micheline’s poutine, because it’s the penultimate «real deal», true to the purest of poutine traditions in the greater Québec City area. It is also where you’ll find the most generous amount of cheese in your plate. They use Chaudière cheese and source their potatoes from Île d’Orléans.