Living just south of the US-Canadian border in Vermont, we frequently head north to enjoy French-inspired Quebecois cuisine. Le Cafetier is one of our regular stops for brunch. The menu is quite large and varied, the assortment of dishes quite impressive, and the food itself fresh, well-prepared and a bit different from what we are used to in the US. We enjoy the various iterations of the Croque Monsieur, meaning different cheese and ham offerings with an assortment of breads/pastries and sides, sometimes more like breakfast and sometimes more like lunch. But the menu is delightful, and one need not have the same thing twice, no matter the frequency of the visits.
Best of all in the summertime is the "Cafe Terasse," the charming outdoor seating along the main thoroughfare of town, always a good place for people-watching. It's fun to check out all the bicyclists and motorcyclists in their distinctive garb riding by on a Saturday or Sunday morning. Coffee is great and prices are very reasonable. Staff are happy to speak French or English, and they are most tolerant of Americans' efforts to use the French language, however much we may mangle it up. You can pay by credit card or in dollars if you haven't exchanged currency. These folks are very friendly and accepting; they want you to have a good time. They like everyone, including those from south of the border.
And there are plenty of things to do in town, from shopping in the quaint stores and art galleries, to visiting the chocolate museum, or the main city museum (Museum of Communications and History of Sutton), which at this writing has quite a wonderful exhibition on Prohibition in the 1920s, and all the cross-border issues connected with it. We loved the exhibition showing a typical eating/drinking establishment of those days, with a dotted line across the floor to indicate the border between the US and Canada, so that patrons could simply walk across and legally enjoy alcoholic beverages. There's a good section on brothels, too. And our bilingual guide, with his impressive knowledge of history and his charming sense of humor, made it all so much fun. You can even stop and have a drink at the old bar on the "wet" Canadian side: quite the thing to do! From time to time there are bigger events that involve dressing up for the times and heading off to one of the local cultural establishments for a "Prohibition Night" with all the trappings. Alas, we missed the most recent one but are hoping that, having been a success, it will be repeated sometime before the exhibition closes on October 27, 2013.
So come to Sutton, have a fine brunch, see the sights, and go home happy.
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