A year after my visit to Canada, I find my way back again to the prairie lands of Saskatchewan. On our last day visiting with family we ate at a novelty restaurant called Montana's. Located on 8th St. in Saskatoon, this BBQ steak house is always a big hit. Racks of succulent pork and beef ribs fill the menu, with tasty chicken and shrimp options. They are all complemented by scrumptious side dishes of country beans, coleslaw, corn off the cob, salads and potato wedges. All plates coming with a piece of delicious warm corn bread. Eating here will fill any size appetite. Even if you have to wait 30 minutes for your table, it's worth the wait.
There's no better way to kill the wait then to go to the bar. Like most Canadians, eager to make conversation, I quickly worked my way in with the locals at the bar. I talked with one lad named Shawn enjoying a colorful "Rip Tide." I ordered one for myself and quickly started to pick the brain of Jordan, the head bartender.
Jordan has been tending bar at Montana's for a little over a year now. He lived in Redding California for awhile and spent some quality time in San Diego and Santa Cruz. Jordan really likes coffee and talked highly about "Verve," an independent coffee roaster in Santa Cruz. He also filled me in with the hip and happening local coffee shops in this town.
Enough about coffee, I asked Jordan about what he likes to drink. He's not much of a mixed drink guy, he prefers a good stout. He also told me he really likes how many micro brewers we have in the states and shared his frustration on the restrictions of alcohol they strongly enforce in Canada. I then asked if he liked sports, he replied with props for the Canadian teams, The Raptors and The Blue Jays. I also asked what there was to do in this town of Saskatoon and he told me straight up, not much. You have to go north to the woods to fish and hunt.
Shawn then gave me a sampler of Shandy pilsner. This was a summer addition beer that was distilled with lemon. I don't really care for fruity beers but this one was quite refreshing. It was almost like he had freshly squeezed a lemon on top of my beer. I really enjoyed it.
Jordan was getting busy at the bar so my last question was about what music he was into. Indy-pop and bands like Passion Pit and The Door Cinema Club were on the top of his list.
Our table was ready and it was time to eat. I said good bye, gave Jordan a stack of our new TYB cards and thanked him for his time.
If you are ever north of the boarder, and have the time, Montana's is a must.
Montana's Cookhouse Saloon
The Rip Tide
At first site this looks just like any other blue foo foo drink but after some research I found out it's called the "Rip Tide." It was like an adult Slurpee without the mass sugar overload, a glass of frosty goodness. It was quite refreshing. The lime stuck in the rim of the coronita bottle seemed the beer was on a nonstop slow poor and would over-flow onto the bar, but magically it didn't. This beautiful cocktail was very popular with the locals. Be careful, you might get a brain freeze, but it's worth it.
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