The first thing I asked Anthoni Jodin—owner of the soon-to-be-open Bar Brutus, where almost everything on the menu features bacon—is whether we were talking about American bacon or Canadian bacon. As it turns out, that was an even sillier question than I realized.
"No one here calls it Canadian bacon," he says of the leaner cuts of "back bacon" we consider to be Canadian-style here in the States. But to be clear, at Brutus they'll be serving up the fatty, salty strips of pork we know as just bacon.
Jodin stresses that this is not an exercise in gluttony, or even kitsch. "It's not just bacon for the fun of bacon," he says. Before there was bacon, there was just the idea of a bar with a certain ambiance, one of gentlemanly class, Jodin explains. But when considering the menu, bacon seemed like the perfect bridge between this highbrow spirit and a warm welcoming array of finger foods. Not to mention how delicious and popular it is.
For some of the items on the menu, the addition of bacon seems completely natural: Their burger is a called the "Kevin Bacon" and, of course, comes topped with strips of the good stuff. While Caesar is ousted from his own salad—now called a "Brutus Salad," naturally—there's the option to have it served in a bacon bowl (for an extra fee). Others are a little bit more of a stretch: "Bacon Sushi" comes stuffed with chicken, tempura, date puree, Japanese omelet and seaweed—all wrapped in bacon. And some are just pure brilliance: The "Hotpig" claims to be "probably the world's first 100 percent bacon sausage" and—since this is Montreal—"Jagerpoutine," which adds both bacon and a Jagermeister-flavored sauce to the Canadian classic.
And if you like your salty with an equal dose of sweet, there's a house-made caramel and bacon doughnut and house-made chocolate chip and bacon bits cookie for dessert.
And since this is a bar first, restaurant second, the cocktail menu features some surprise bacon appearances as well. "Pork Soda" is just like a vodka soda, except that it makes use of a bacon-infused vodka. The "Beeznuts" keeps the sweet and salty appeal of a margarita but with a twist: tequila, homemade bacon marmalade and almond liqueur. And the "Bloody Caesar"—their take on a Bloody Mary—comes garnished with a bacon rose. "Looks good, tastes awesome," Jodin says of this fatty floral arrangement. "What person doesn't want to order a drink with a bacon rose?"
The bar is all but ready to open; they're just waiting on a liquor license.