For anyone that's never had the opportunity to try the mind-blowing deliciousness that is pastel de nata, I feel so sorry for you. You have been deprived of one of life's great pleasures. Luckily these Portuguese egg-tart pastries have been growing in popularity in Montreal thanks to our prominent Portuguese community.
The history of these little bites of heaven is actually pretty interesting. Convents and monasteries in the 18th century would use egg whites for starching their laundry, and the left-over yolks were used to makes pastries and cakes, which resulted in pastel de nata becoming more and more popular throughout the country, since the monks would sell them to the public. Thankfully, you no longer have to seek out a monk to get your hands on these tasty treats. Here are 6 places in Montreal where you can get amazing pastel de nata.
1. Patisserie Du Rosaire
This long-standing Portuguese bake shop in the Plateau knows how to make a mean pastel de nata. Actually let me correct myself, they know how to make THREE mean pasteis de nata. At Rosaire you can get the plain classic, or you can opt for a chocolate one or a maple syrup one. Whatever choice you make, you really can't go wrong. They also sell these tasty morsels at the Jean-Talon Market, Coco Rico Inc and Piri Piri, so you have plenty of ways to get these in your mouth.
2. Bela Vista
The pastel de nata at Bela Vista is everything it should be: sweet, eggy custard with just a hint of lemon, heated and served with a sprinkle of cinnamon. It's so delicious you'll find yourself having trouble not ordering every single one in the restaurant. The coffee here is also really good, so make sure you order a cup to sip on while you indulge in these delicious treats.
Photo Cred - ImaYesfa M
3. Rotisserie Romados
115 Rachel E
Most people go to Romados for their Portuguese chicken, but if you're smart, you'll stay for the pastel de nata. They're creamy, fresh, and always right out of the oven with a little crunch of caramelized powdered sugar on top. Ordering just one is always an option, I guess, OR you can get yourself a dozen for just $13. We recommend the latter.
4. Les Anges Gourmets
4247 Saint Laurent
This little Portuguese bake shop is a hidden gem that you'll want to find. The staff is super friendly and will speak to you in English, French or Portuguese - whatever you prefer. Their pastel de nata is fresh, reasonably priced, and the purest bite of sweet gloriousness you'll have all day - and possibly all year. They also have seating inside so you can stay awhile and enjoy your tasty dessert in comfort.
5. Patisserie de Notre Maison
4104 Saint Laurent
Everything at Patisserie de Notre Maison is made super fresh and will leave you in awe and wonder - including their delicious pastel de nata. They're also pretty cheap, at $1.25 each, or you can get a dozen for $12. You'll be saying "Obrigado" your entire way out the door, as you stuff a few more into your mouth.
6. Cantinho de Lisboa
356 Saint Paul
You can eat in or take-out from this charming Old Montreal market, but whatever you do, you can't go there without trying their pastel de nata. The bakery counter is always ready to go with these sweet treats. The pastry is light and flaky and the custard has just the right amount of sweetness. They also make a mean cup of coffee if you're looking for something equally satisfying to accompany your pastry.