The Mile End: Canada’s Hipster Mecca

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Having recently left Brooklyn and moved to Madison, both of which, if you didn’t know, are hipster hot spots, I haven’t really been wanting for greater hipster exposure. That said, hipster areas always have the best thrift and coffee shops, and, assuming they haven’t evolved into yupster, great hole-in-the-wall ethnic restaurants.

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Montreal’s Mile-End neighborhood was a nice break from the high-end yupsterdom of Williamsburg, and Madison’s still slightly grungy appeal. The Mile-End is an eclectic mix of food and ethnicity, where Orthodox Jews, Italians, Portuguese, Muslims, and hipsters mix among the Turkish kebab, Kosher grocery stores, thrift shops, Italian five-and-dimes, Souvlaki joints, and artist collectives.  And I can’t forget to mention the hipster neighborhood staple: the coffee shop, of which there was an almost unlimited selection. My friend and I took our pick and spent a few hours in Resonance with an army of Mac-devotees.

My exploration of the Mile-End took place on a windless, 50-degree fall day that was threatening rain that never came. In other words, it was a wonderful day for wandering. If you’re in Montreal, this neighborhood is one you must stroll through and hang out in for at least a couple hours. At the very least, stop in at La Maison du Bagel and have one of their distinctive and delectable bagels, or do one of these 10 other fun things.  Whether it’s summer, a pleasant fall day, or a bleary winter one, the Mile-End has something to offer.

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