The Jewish influence on Montreal’s food scene goes beyond the bagels and into the realms of meat. Specifically smoked meat and there is no better-known place to get the smoked meat than at Schwartz’s, which has been making the stuff since 1928. Today Celine Dion weirdly has some sort of ownership in the place, but I went hoping this had little to do with the popularity.
The line to actually be seated was out-the-door crazy, but Schwartz’s has a to-go area with a few counters that we took advantage of. I went with the regular Smoked Meat Sandwich, which consisted of the meat, mustard and rye bread. Usually I would have ordered without the mustard because I’m just not a fan of the stuff, but keeping it just seemed like the right thing to do. When I unwrapped my half-pound of meat it looked pretty tasty. When I dug in, I was met with a pretty great-tasting smoked meat sandwich. The smoked meat, by the way, tasted kind of like a midway point between corned beef and pastrami and that midway point was awesome. So awesome, in fact, that I really didn’t mind the mustard and the sour flavor it added.
It may be a touristy spot, but Schwartz’s is definitely worth a visit for anyone looking to expand their knowledge of cured meats or just to get a great Jewish sandwich in French Canada.