Montreal Featured on New Netflix Show: Somebody Feed Phil!

We are thrilled to announce that Montreal is being featured in an episode of a new Netflix series called “Somebody Feed Phil”. Phil Rosenthal is known for being the creator of the very popular television show “Everybody Loves Raymond”. On the show, Phil travels around the world to sample local cuisine and cultures. Each episode features a different city. He visits Bangkok, Lisbon, Mexico City and our beloved city, Montreal! Montreal has always been famous for being a food lover’s paradise. In fact, Town and Country Magazine had named Montreal as the Gastronomy capital of North America because of the number of restaurants, the quality of our food scene as well as the number of celebrity chefs who have set up their businesses here! We are spoiled with amazing food in Montreal and the diversity in our population is reflected in the diversity of our restaurants. Montreal is one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world. Whatever type of cuisine you are in the mood for, you will find it in Montreal and there are restaurants to suit every budget. For this episode of Somebody Feed Phil, the show partnered up with Tourism Montreal. They chose Montreal as their first Canadian stop, validating Montreal’s status as the top food destination in Canada and across North America. Phil visits the following Montreal restaurants during the episode; Park, Montreal Plaza, Agikol, Olive & Gourmando, Ma Poule Mouillee, Cabane a Sucre Au Pied de Chochon, Schwart’s, St. Viateur Bagel and Poissonnerie La Mer. Phil says about Montreal: “It feels like Europe when you walk down the streets you see the architecture you see the parks. It is very sweet and very charming and it’s Canada, so everybody’s nice”. Phil calls Schwartz’s a landmark that he definitely had to visit and says that … Read more

Esther Alejandra Garcia Meza From Mexico: “I enjoyed my classes…”

Esther Alejandra Garcia Meza is a lovely young lady from Mexico, participating in EC Montreal’s General French programme. She has been studying in Montreal since January 20, 2020. She arrived in the middle of our winter months and despite the cold weather, she truly enjoyed her Montreal winter language adventure. Sadly, today is Esther Alejandra’s last day at EC. Despite transitioning to our French online lessons last March, she continued to stay motivated and made a lot of progress. Her French skills have blossomed and we are very proud of her achievements. Here is what Esther Alejandra wanted to share with everyone about her EC Montreal and EC Virtual experience: I loved…the teachers at school, always willing to help. I enjoyed…my classes that were very fun and interesting. I learned…how to enjoy learning a language and also that among international students you can learn new things in their native language. I will continue to…practice my French with the friends I made here. I will always remember…the friends I made here, my teacher and my classes, Montreal is such a beautiful place to be. I promise to…stay in touch with everyone, practice my French and come back soon!

Mount-Royal’s Sunday Tam Tams are Back!

The city of Montreal is slowly starting to open up again as we begin to recover from our lock down period.  We still need to be very careful as we are not out of the woods yet, not until a cure or vaccine for the virus is found.  We can still enjoy the city of Montreal and all its beauty by being responsible and taking the necessary precautions.  You can still be cheerful about the start of beautiful, sunny weather!  There are many reasons to be excited for spring and summer with EC Montreal.  One of the biggest is Tam-Tams, the festival of drumming, dancing, and much more that takes place on Sunday afternoons around the George-Étienne Cartier Monument in Mount Royal Park.  It is an informal drum circle with thousands of participants!  It is quite the scene!  Many enjoy the music while picnicking or sunbathing! As Mount-Royal is situated right in the center of the island of Montreal, because of all the drumming that takes place every Sunday, Mount-Royal is referred to as the heartbeat of Montreal!  If you are looking for a more bohemian side of Montreal, you should definitely check out how everyone comes together enjoying the sunshine, nature, their drums and each other!  It is important that you observe from a distance, wear a mask and avoid sharing any drums or instruments with others.  If you don’t feel like people around you are being responsible, remove yourself from the crowd and enjoy the many nature trails on Mount-Royal leading up to the summit where you can get a spectacular view of the city! There are also many Bixi bike stands located close to Mount-Royal so you can also get on a bike and explore the different cycling lanes available around the city. If you still don’t feel comfortable going out, don’t.  Stay connected … Read more

Throwback Thursday: Festival Season!

Every June, the EC Montreal team is busy planning for our festival season in Montreal!  June is the start to so many free, outdoor festivals.  In addition to planning outings to these events with our students, we try to re-create them at the school as part of our Wednesday complimentary activities.  We create mini festivals to give our students a taste of these annual festivals and we provide them with the information they need so they can attend them in person. The month of June starts of with a bang as we celebrate the Grand Prix weekend!  Montreal has been hosting the Formula 1 Grand Prix since 1967.  Until recently, it was the only Grand Prix race in all of North America.  Celebrities and travellers from all over the world make their way to Montreal during the first week of June to watch the race and all the festivities associated with the race like the Ferrari club street festival in Little Italy and the F1 Crescent Street event and concerts.  They also come to enjoy Montreal’s nightlife, club and restaurant scene.  Every year at EC Montreal we transform the student lounge into a F1 party with the checker flags, sparkling wine and a race car theme cake.  We also purchase tickets to the race and sell them to our students.  These race tickets sell out every year, so we want to ensure we purchase them in advance so our students can get a chance to see the race and get a glimpse of some celebrities enjoying Montreal! The International Beer, Fireworks, Jazz, Just For Laughs and French music festivals are not far behind.  Every day from June 1 to the end of summer there is a festival taking place in Montreal.  This incredible city hosts over 120 festivals throughout the … Read more

Tips on Staying Cool During this Heat Wave!

We are experiencing tropical heat in Montreal this week!  With the humidity factor, it will feel like thirty seven degrees this week.  It helps that we are self-isolating and are at home.  There is nothing worse that sitting in traffic with this type of heat.  We felt it was important to share some tips on how to stay cool and safe during this incredible heat. The first piece of advise we need to share is to stay hydrated.  You need to take the time to drink a lot of fluids, especially water when we experience this type of heat.  Fill up a large reusable bottle of water and keep it with you at all times.  Take sips throughout the day to ensure you are drinking enough.  While  you are taking your English or French online lessons, keep that bottle right next to you. Make sure to wear loose clothing and if you have long hair, keep it away from your neck and face.  This will help keep you comfortable and cool throughout the day. It is also best to eat lighter meals.  Make sure your meals consist mainly of fruits and vegetables.  Keep your house cool by not using your stove or oven too much.  You can prepare a delicious salad and instead of cooking your protein, add a can of tuna or some canned beans to your dish instead. If you must go out, please make sure to use sunblock and protect your head from the hot son by using a cap or sun hat.  Try to stay in the shade and if you have one, bring a portable fan with you.  The dollar store sells the cutest portable fans that are found in every colour.  They really help if you are feeling a little overheated. There is a … Read more

Learning French is Fun with EC Virtual French!

EC offers more than English virtual lessons; we also offer French and Bilingual options too!  EC Montreal is the only school among all EC destinations that teaches French in addition to English lessons.  Our French program has grown in popularity as most of our students have expressed a desire to learn a third or fourth language.  Second to English, French is the most learned language in the world.  French is still the international language of diplomacy, of the culinary world, of the art world, the official language of the Olympics and let’s face it, it is still the language of love. I would always joke with our students who showed an interest in taking some French classes at EC Montreal while they are here studying English that they want to surprise their boyfriends or girlfriends back home by learning some romantic French phrases.  They laugh and admit that it would be great to get a taste of a second language while they are here. Whether are students are interested in studying International Business, get into politics, are planning a romantic trip to Paris or want to immigrate to Quebec, EC Montreal is here to help our students achieve their language goals.  Our students learn so quickly with our passionate and skilled French instructors.  We teach our students confidence and motivate them to excel. Even with our current EC Virtual French lessons, our teachers are going above and beyond to ensure our students are learning and enjoying the process.  Just today, our wonderful French teacher, Sharhzad sent me the picture found above that is a collage of her virtual lessons taught.  Her students adore learning with her. Join our French virtual lessons and meet students from all over the world and see that Ca va bien aller!  

And Now a Word From Our Teachers…

Every week, EC Montreal will be sharing comments from our team of teachers.  During this pandemic, our EC Montreal teachers have really been our heroes!  Not only are they delivering stellar English or French online lessons to our students, they have also helped keep our students motivated, engaged and connected during this difficult time.  They have been a shoulder for our students to lean on and have gone the extra mile in keeping our students happy. This week, we are happy to share comments from our lovely English teacher, Katrina.  Katrina is not only a fantastic teacher, she is also fun, cool and big-hearted!  She loves teaching and is one of our best English teachers in our Young Learners programme.  She connects really well with our younger clients and even after only a few weeks of teaching some of our groups, she and her students always share a very tearful farewell.  It is very touching to see. Here is what Katrina had to say about her experience at EC Montreal and teaching EC Virtual students. I have been an English teacher at EC Montreal since July 2017.  What I like most about teaching in this industry is that I like the diversity and freedom. I like how it’s not based on age but rather skill. I like how it’s a job that can be done anywhere. I am enjoying teaching the online lessons and what I found has been an advantage are the breakout rooms.  They are great because it makes it easier to listen to students during discussion. Students can ask questions vocally or written, depending on their comfort level. Students are expected to do some studying on their own to maximize speaking time in class. When we do return to our onsite classes, I expect we will have … Read more

Montreal Recipe of the Week!

One of my favorite dishes to make is a French one.  Montreal has a very strong European influence.  It is one of the most multi-cultural cities in the world.  We have so many different cultures here and our cuisine is a reflection of this wonderful diversity.  Whatever you are in the mood for, you will find it in Montreal.  Luckily, even during this pandemic, many of our favorite restaurants are still offering take out and delivery options.  The type of cuisine you will find the most of in Montreal is French.  There are many French bistros, cafes and fine dining restaurants. Like me, many people are doing a lot more cooking at home.  We are trying out new recipes and eating home cooked meals.  So, in honour of French cuisine, I will be sharing my version of Coquille St. Jacques. For this recipe, you will need: 6 large potatoes 1/2 pound of shrimp 1/2 pound of scallops 1 cup of mushrooms 1 cup of white wine 1 cup of heavy cream 1 cup of shredded Swiss cheese 3 cloves of garlic 1/2 an onion 1 cup of butter 2 tablespoons of olive oil salt and pepper to taste parsley to garnish In a large pot, boil the 6 potatoes until they are soft enough to mash.  Mash them and add 1/2 cup of butter and 1/2 cup of cream and season with salt and pepper.  Once the potatoes are smooth and creamy, set them aside. In a large skillet, heat the remaining butter and 2 tablespoons of olive oil.  Add your garlic and onion and cook on medium heat until translucent.  Add your mushrooms and cook until lightly browned.  Next, add your shrimp and scallops.  Don’t cook them all the way through as they will be baked in the oven … Read more

Montreal Bagel Workshop with Lincoln Apartment Bakery!

EC Montreal offers an English or French plus Gastronomy programme as part of our course offering to students.  Montreal is a food lover’s paradise and named the Gastronomy capital of North America by Town and Country Magazine.  Any student who books this programme receives two gastronomy sessions per week in addition to their General English or General French programme.  EC Montreal works with a lot of different gastronomy vendors and offers a wide variety of sessions to our students.  There is no minimum level of language skills required as most of the sessions are hands on.  Students can choose culinary classes, mixology lessons, latte art, wine tasting, food tours, baking and pastry making sessions.  One of our favourite vendors is the Lincoln Apartment Bakery.  They offer the most wonderful sessions on cake decorating, pies, cupcakes, cookies, bread, macarons and Montreal style bagels.  EC Montreal even held one of our staff team-building sessions at the bakery.  We had so much fun making the most colourful and delicious macarons.  Everyone who participated had a lovely time and learned so much. As we are all on lock down practicing social distancing, we asked Jessica from the bakery if she would give our students a free baking workshop.  She was more than happy to offer our students a free baking workshop.  This was very generous of Jessica and her team.  Sarah for the Lincoln Apartment Bakery gave a workshop on how to make Montreal bagels.  Montreal bagels are different from any other bagels in the world.  The secret is the honey as we learned on today’s session.  Sarah began by asking if we knew the basic ingredients that go into making bread.  We know that they are flour, yeast, water and salt.  For Montreal bagels, we also add 1 egg, half a cup of … Read more

More Pedestrian Streets Coming to Montreal Soon!

In an effort to keep Montrealers and our visitors safe during these challenging times, the city of Montreal is improving their city landscape.  Starting this June they will increasing the size of the pedestrian walkways to allow for more social distancing and to boost the economy.  They want to make it easier and safer for people to go out to the shops and to travel to and from work safely. As the weather is getting warmer and sunnier, more and more people are going out for walks and loosing up their self-isolation measures. In a recent interview; our major, Valerie Plante, stated the following:  “Since a large part of the population of Montreal will probably remain in town during the summer, it was our duty to offer it a pleasant and safe city that will allow it to move without the hassle and to rediscover all that the metropolis has to offer.”  The transformation of pedestrian streets will include Ste-Catherine Street between Metcalfe and Atwater.  EC Montreal’s campus is right in this section, so we will benefit from this extra sidewalk space to keep our teams and students safe when we can return to our onsite classes. The other two areas that will be transformed are St. Denis Street in the Latin district and the street De La Commune in Old Montreal. In addition creating these pedestrian streets and increasing the sidewalk space, the city of Montreal will also be creating an active pathways circuit which is an additional 327 kilometres of bicycle and pedestrian paths on the island of Montreal.  This city has always been very bicycle friendly given the number of bike paths and creating the bixi bike system, however, now more than ever, the city wants us to walk and cycle to and from work or school … Read more