The unanimous winner of best pain au chocolate within walking distance of chez nous (so far in any case, we certainly didn't get to all of the possible sources) is Boulangerie Les Co'pains d'Abord. This tiny cafe/bakery is located a little east of me, in the up-in-coming stretch of Mont-Royal, just east of Papineau. The competition was stiff, and personally I thought that Boulangerie Monsieur Pinchot was going to win hands down. This is a tiny little bakery at rue de Brebeuf and Marianne and I love stopping off (it's on the bike path on the way up from parc La Fontaine). The massive Quebec chain, Première Moisson, which has a location on Mont-Royal, came in last. La Fromentiere, our local cheese, prepared meats and bakery on Laurier, was second and in more than one case, nearly a tie (they are just so different!).
Why did it win? Well, my own reaction was instant and effusive. Everything from the pastry--fluffy, light and moist--to the chocolate, not too sweet, not too rich, and well distributed.
Sadly, the cheese shop at the end of my block, which I must pass pretty much every day, sells the pain au chocolate from Boulangerie Les Co'Pains d'Abord so in fact I don't even have to go east of Papineau to get it...between that and La Fromentiere any idea of dieting is ridiculous.
This morning we slogged our way through a selection of almond croissant. I'll report on that when my blood levels relax...out of fairness we included Premier Moisson again. Premier Moisson is over-rated and everywhere. What they do best seems to be the smell. It's difficult to walk past those places, but evidently, at least when one is in the plateau, one should.