Kid-Friendly Fare in Québec City

Bring a bon appétit for these culinary traditions: crêpes, maple syrup pie and tea.


She’s the grand dame of Canada, and at age 400, she looks spectacular—without any Botox treatments. This old lady is still très joli (“very pretty,” for you non-Francophiles).

When you stroll around romantic Québec City, you feel as though you’ve been whisked back to 17th-century Paris, with indoor and outdoor cafés, lamp posts, narrow cobblestone streets, quaint shops and stunning Old World structures. Not surprising, since Québec City was the first permanent French colony in North America and Canada’s first city. Canadians are especially fond of this charming provincial capital of Québec, as it was the main port of entry for immigrants from 1608 until World War I.

Throughout 2008, Québec City is throwing a gigantic celebration to mark its 400th anniversary—and everyone’s invited. If you’re planning to attend this party (July 3 is the actual anniversary date), here are three pointers on where to experience can’t-miss, family-friendly fare:

Savor a Crêpe at Le Casse-Crêpe Breton

Sure, you’ll likely have to wait to get in. But once you’re inside, you’ll forget that you had to stand in line. The gargantuan crêpes, which you can see being made, are crammed full of tasty ingredients like eggs, cheese, ham, sausage, mushrooms and fruit. After gorging on one of them, you’ll be stuffed—and be ready for a few laps around the city’s surrounding Haute-Ville section. Open daily, 7 a.m. to 1 a.m. Average crêpe price: About $6 (USD).

1136 Rue Saint-Jean, tel. 418-692-0438 

Eye the Maple Syrup Pie at Aux Anciens Canadiens

Before two friends and I dined at this restaurant in 2007, we were a bit skeptical of this dessert. Maple syrup is meant for pancakes and waffles, not pie, right? That skepticism melted away with the first bite. The crème fraîche-topped maple syrup filling was not tooth-achingly sweet. The crust was perfectly flaky. Aside from the signature pie, Aux Anciens Canadiens serves top-notch traditional Québécois fare (meat pie, bison, caribou) and, as a bonus, is located in a house dating back to the 1670s. Open daily, noon to 10 p.m. À la carte price for pie: About $10.50 (USD).

34 Rue Saint-Louis, tel. 418-692-1627, 

Take Time for Tea at the Fairmont Le Château Frontenac

Recommended for ages 5 to 12, the Afternoon Tea with Madame Rose at Le Champlain restaurant introduces children to tea etiquette and social skills, and entertains them with stories and anecdotes. Aside from sipping tea, kids learn how to be well-mannered guests in any social setting. While Madame Rose is instructing your children, you can tour the 664-room, 115-year-old Fairmont Le Château Frontenac, which is majestically perched on a bluff above the St. Lawrence River in the heart of Old Québec. Hours vary by season. Cost for tea: $25 (CAD) per child (about $24.69 USD).

1 Rue des Carrières, tel. 418-691-2166,  

Destinations: Québec, Canada

Themes: Family Travel

Activities: Eat

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