It has been about a year now since Time Out, the media and hospitality brand that publishes local guides to some of the world’s most interesting cities, ranked Rue Wellington in Verdun as “the coolest street in the world.”
My lifetime experiences in Verdun go back to the days as a toddler. My late dad worked for the old CKVL-CKOI radio stations on Gordon Avenue just below Wellington. The latter was nothing to rave about back then, nor over the last few decades. Yet that has all changed now. In the summer months, the street is completely closed to traffic and dotted with an array of terraces.
That is where I found Millmans Casse-Croûte, an all-day breakfast spot open Wednesday to Sunday from 9 am to 3 pm. Nicholas Gaudette, a Hudson native who now calls Little Burgundy home, is a 33-year-old graduate from the Quebec Centre of Expertise for the Culinary Cooking Arts at Pearson Adult Career Centre in 2010. Since then he served as the chef at several notable restaurants, including, Le Pois Penche, La Société, and Dandy. In May of 2022, he made the jump to open his own spot, lovingly naming it after stepfather Ken Millman.
It is a cozy spot, with seating for 32 inside and 24 on the outdoor terrasse. Nick is cool under fire, working the grill at a steady pace while directing his well-trained staff. The menu is posted on the wall and headlines with Le Millman, a breakfast plate with fresh eggs, thick-cut bacon, brioche bread toast, fruit, and specially seasoned potatoes. Indeed, that is what I ordered and it was a nice and filling choice. I had my eye on a number of other items. What awaits me for future visits? The sandwich de j is a breakfast sandwich, bagel and lox, cured on site, fluffy pancakes, toast aux champi (mushroom toast), omelets, grilled cheese, BLT, fried chicken, a Caesar salad and a mimosa.
This is diner food, elevated with fresh local ingredients and hand-crafted dishes served in a sunny feel-good setting featuring lots of plants, vintage photos, and a super sweet playlist that both staff and customers vibe on.
It’s no wonder Nick’s start-up diner already has over 3,000 Instagram followers (@millmanmtl) and a rapidly growing number of regulars who appreciate great breakfasts.
“We are not trying to reinvent anything here,” Nick said. “We call ourselves a family diner. I just want to put out a good product.”
Millmans is doing well so far. “Diners tend to have long shelf lives,” said Nick.
I love the formula of this place. Could the day come down the line with multiple Millmans franchises? “I think I will take the time to work on this locale,” Nick said.
Millmans is located at 3779 Wellington Street in Verdun. The phone number is (514) 765-3030