Mission Accomplished: An epic feast at Au Pied de Cochon

Ever since my friend DB gave us a copy of the Au Pied de Cochon (PDC) cookbook, my husband and I have been a little obsessed with chef Martin Picard. We watched the DVD that came with the book several times, even playing it for our friends last Thanksgiving. Picard spends a majority of the video eating copious amounts of foie gras and drinking wine — two interests we definitely have in common.

We also watched the “No Reservations” episode where Anthony Bourdain ate so much food at PDC, he started to turn green. Towards the end of the segment, he was taking just one bite from each plate and wearily waving the rest away. The best part is seeing Picard in the kitchen, threatening to send out more and more foie gras. I admit we (foolishly) laughed at Tony’s inability to keep eating, thinking we could do better.

So when we made our own travel plans to Montreal, Au Pied de Cochon was, quite honestly, the only place we had to go. There were no ifs, ands or buts. We would be dining on duck in a can one way or another, come hell or high water street riots.

Luckily, we were able to make a reservation for the second night we were in town. And since we knew we were about to be killed with food, we made sure to walk a few miles around Montreal’s Plateau area as a warm-up. It didn’t help.

Clearly, we underestimated the extravaganza that is PDC. We didn’t stand a chance against all of this:

To Start:

Bison Tongue with Tarragon Sauce

Cromesquis de Foie Gras — deep-fried foie nubbins — best thing ever!

Next was the “salad” course:

Freshly Shucked Scallop with Fiddlehead Ferns and Beurre Fondue

Salt Cured Foie Gras with Potatoes & Gruyere on a Flaky Pastry

Our next dish, an evening special, was supposedly “foie for two”:

This was the dish that put us over the edge. The server told us it was 350 grams of foie gras, but when the Le Cruset pot came out and we peered into it, my husband and I shared a look of wonder and fear. Along with the chunks of ham, pineapple and potatoes, there was a whole lobe of roasted foie gras nestled in the pot. It was absolutely ridiculous.

And I will straight-up admit I hit a wall during this dish and tapped out after only eating about six ounces or so of the actual foie. But my husband managed to almost finish it. He really is my hero.

“Foie Gras for Two” — it was large and in charge

Served in a Le Cruset pot, this foie gras meant business

Foie Gras with Pineapple, Potatoes, Ramps and Ham

And now on to our entrée:

This dish is one of the PDC specialties, and like everything else served here, it is over the top. The can is opened tableside and the goodies inside ooze out into the bowl. There is a moulard duck breast, seared foie gras, cabbage and carrots, all in a balsamic meat sauce.

Then you are left alone with the daunting task of finding out exactly how much you really can eat.

Duck in a Can

Duck out of the Can

All I know for sure is that Martin Picard is an evil genius. And I cannot wait until my next visit to his restaurant — it was just too incredible to enjoy only once in a lifetime.

21 thoughts on “Mission Accomplished: An epic feast at Au Pied de Cochon

    • Thanks for reading! I will say that some of the “lighter” dishes were my favorite. The scallops were delicious and the special seafood platters they were putting out looked fabulous. So there really is something for everyone…except vegetarians, I guess! =)

  1. Thanks for the “Like.” By the way, I’ve always wanted to eat at PDC but I’ve really wanted to go to their annual “Sugar Shack” (Cabane a Sucre). It’s supposed to be an epic feast of foie gras proportions. Happy blogging!

    • We missed Sugar Shack by couple of weeks, which was sad, but it gives us an excuse to go back to Montreal next year! And we have the cookbook for that too, so we can do some experimenting of our own. =)

  2. I was just getting ready to go out for breakfast, but now I’m too full to eat! I have dined at PDC on several occasions but I think you outdid me for “amount of food consumed in one meal.’ Good job!

    • Wow, what have been your favorite things you’ve had there? We knew we had to go big since we have no idea when we’ll make it back. In hindsight we should have stopped after the pineapple foie gras dish, but who can say no to duck in a can? We certainly couldn’t!

      • I think the fois gras poutine is yummy – great fries with fois gras and gravey. Very good! Personally I wasn’t that taken with the duck in a can, but that fois gras for 2 is on my wish list I can tell you!

        • Honestly, I would agree with you on the duck. We got it because we had to, after having seeing it in No Reservations. But it was probably my least favorite over all. The foie special was definitely what dreams (and nightmares!) are made of though — highly recommended.

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