One short Thursday in November, Noé Lainesse went to the La Petite-Patrie butcher shop on rue Beaubien in Montreal. Co-owner Charles Lefebvre welcomes him with a smile. The two men know each other well. Chuck was chef at Noé’s restaurant, O’Thym, an institution in the Centre-Sud district of Montreal.
Usually, Noé Lainesse goes to the butcher to buy beef and cold meats. But today, his gaze falls on a smaller creature, the duck, freshly delivered from a farm in the Hudson Valley. We say “small”, but that’s a way of speaking. This three-kilo duck could easily pass for a turkey.
The duck with cranberries, which Noé will cook for us today, is a classic from the O’Thym restaurant, which will celebrate its 20th anniversary in 2024.
At his restaurant, Noé Lainesse uses “99.9%” local ingredients. He also tries to reduce the amount of waste his kitchen generates. “It’s something that my girlfriend and I already do at home, and I apply it in restaurants whenever possible,” explains the father.
In September, Noé did an internship at Silo in London, a 100% zero waste restaurant. The Montreal chef does not have this pretension for his restaurant, but one step at a time, his team managed to reduce the number of black bins from six to only two per week.
Reducing waste is also at the heart of the values of the La Petite-Patrie butcher shop. Every two weeks, Charles Lefebvre and his team receive a whole beef carcass, which they divide themselves. They also offer customers the opportunity to bring their container from home.
Do you want to make this menu with zero waste in mind? Noé Lainesse advises you to speak to your butcher about this desire when you reserve your duck and duck or veal stock. Most of the ingredients in the recipes that follow can be purchased in bulk. “Bring your reusable bags and refuse all packaging where possible,” he advises.
Are you ready ?