Cozy Ste. Adèle B&B is close to skiing
BY ROCHELLE LASH, SPECIAL TO THE GAZETTE NOVEMBER 17, 2011
The Cafe O Lit B&B has four guest rooms on the second floor, each with a homespun feel.
Photograph by: Cafe O Lit, Cafe O Lit
Café Ô Lit is enjoying almost instant success. Within months of getting into the inn-keeping business, Marie-André Thollon and Priscilla Lapointe scooped up Quebec Tourism’s annual prize for top B&B in the Laurentians for 2011.
Two show-business veterans, they bought Café Ô Lit, a cottage hidden in the hills on the outskirts of Ste. Adèle, and applied a time-honoured philosophy of hospitality.
“It’s simple,” said Thollon. “We offer a warm welcome and a great breakfast. Plus, we think we have a beautiful setting.”
All true. But take note. That warmth is enhanced by Café Ô Lit’s signature welcome drink. Although the B&B has a coffee theme, it isn’t coffee at all. When you arrive here you’ll glow after sipping a potent, sweet-and-tart cocktail of dark rum, a splash of white cranberry juice, a dash of blueberry juice and raspberries.
“We add ice cubes in the shape of hearts because we have a lot of lovers staying here,” said Lapointe. “They come because we are hidden in the woods, so we try to make it even more romantic.”
Café Ô Lit is a traditional two-storey cottage tucked into the forest and surrounded by rock gardens and a pond with a tiny waterfall that still is gurgling even though there are frosts at night. Both women had mothers who were mad for antiquing, so Café Ô Lit is filled with country-style furniture: old Quebec armoires, a big buffet in the dining room and sofas and tables from Thollon’s grandmother that date from the late 1800s. The B&B has four guest rooms on the second floor, each with a homespun feel. You’ll be snug and comfy under soft cotton sheets and floral coverlets, but if it is romance you are after, choose the striking room La Cappuccino, which has a dramatic white canopy-draped bed.
Breakfast is a serious affair at Café Ô Lit. The table is set with white Wedgwood china trimmed with silver, and you sit down to smoothies served in cut crystal glasses. Thollon, the chief cook, starts off with yogourt and fruit topped with granola and follows with one of her specialties: pancakes stuffed with ham and cheese, quiche with tomato and goat cheese, or eggs Benedict with a recipe from one of her favourite bistros, Café Cherrier in Montreal’s Plateau district. If you stay a few days, you’ll have a different main course every morning, but you always have yummy baked goods, like homemade banana cake or whole-wheat croissants, Thollon’s strawberry-rhubarb jam and almond butter, honey from Val David, as well as such fine Quebec cheeses as Cendrillon from Portneuf.
Both women are irrepressible culture vultures.
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