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October 2018

Necessary Hydro work begins on Marc Chagall Avenue

Work is about to begin by Hydro-Québec on Marc Chagall Avenue, closer to Mackle Road, connected to phase two of the Equinoxe high rise building project. As a result, for the next several weeks only one lane of traffic will be available  in front of the new facility.
This electrical work being performed by Hydro  and their sub contractor was originally supposed to start three weeks ago,  but there were unforeseen delays on their part.  This work is essential for the new project and must take place before our Urban Development Department issues a building permit for the next phase.
Hydro obtained all the necessary required permits and Urban Development signed off on the signage plan and traffic lane reduction, all essential to do the required work. We were told the work could last approximately three weeks, however their intention is to complete it as fast as possible weather permitting.
We all recognize this is yet another unavoidable inconvenience for residents. It is our intent to do everything possible to minimize the problems.

New Deputy Premier among those on hand at vigil in CSL for Pittsburgh synagogue shooting victims

Last Saturday’s senseless murder of 11 innocent victims at a Pittsburgh synagogue has resonated with people all over the world. Soon after this horrible news hit, we learned that a community-wide vigil  coordinated by the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) would be held at Beth Israel Beth Aaron Congregation in Cote Saint-Luc on Monday, October 29.

City Council delayed the start of our meeting so we could attend this event. What we experienced was something beyond anything I could have imagined. When we arrived, cars were already parked blocks away. There was an endless array of police vehicles, not to mention police officers on horseback. Security to get inside was knee deep.

Genevieve Guilbault

There was standing room only and a highly impressive list of senior political leaders: from the new provincial CAQ government, Deputy Premier and Minister of Public Security Genevieve Guilbault; Minister Responsible for Montreal Chantal Rouleau; and Parliamentary Secretary to the Premier and Responsible for the Anglo Secretariat file Christopher Skeet; Provincial Liberal Interim leader Pierre Arcand, local D’Arcy McGee Liberal MNA  and a large number of his MNAs; PQ Interim leader Pascal Berubé; Federal Liberal Minister for the Francophonie and Tourism Melanie Joly; former Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre; and City of Montreal Executive Committee Vice-Chair Magda Popeanu and a number of city councillors; several municipal mayors and members of their council. There were also many representatives from cultural communities present.

Rabbi Reuben J. Poupko, the spiritual leader of Beth Israel Beth Aaron, co-chair of CIJA Quebec and a constituent of mine in District 2, spoke with deep emotion as he opened up the evening. Not only is he from Pittsburgh, but his  late father served as a rabbi there for more than 60 years. The Poupkos lived only blocks away from Squirrel Hill and the Tree of Life Congregation, where the carnage took place.

Melanie Joly


Joly, reading a message from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, stated that an attack on one is an attack on all.

When Gail Adelson, first vice-president of Federation CJA, began to recite the names of the victims and candles were lit, many people started to weep. These people were gunned down by a lunatic terrorist only because they are Jewish. Could this really have happened in 2018 North America? How did a 97 year old victim survive the Holocaust, only to lose her life in a place that everyone should feel so safe.

Only a few weeks in office, it was impressive to see the CAQ government send three senior MNAs to show solidarity with the community. Guilbault, representing a government that wants to strip the rights of  public employees in positions of authority from wearing religious symbols, drew warm applause for stating how there is no place in society for such acts of hatred. “I am proud to see Quebecers united,” she said.

Israel Consul General David Levy brought a message from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. When he thanked American President Donald Trump for his condemnation of the murders, some in the audience booed. Only yesterday Trump seemed to be blaming the synagogue for not having an armed guard on duty.

Rabbi Poupko speaks.


Rabbi Poupko, his voice cracking, noted that a synagogue is a place of peace, prayer and faith. He said it best, emphasizing how we all know the people of Squirrel Hill. “All of us can relate to what happened," he said  "We go to synagogues that look just like [Tree of Life] synagogue. Our ties and bonds of history and of solidarity and our values are very strong."

The underlying message by Rabbi Poupko was to thank everyone for stepping inside a synagogue and not being afraid to do so. "The best way is to continue to do what we do with greater intensity," he said, "which is to lead lives of tolerance, to lead lives where we understand that ultimately the power of good is more powerful than evil, where we continue to strengthen the bonds between individuals and communities and hope the light will block out the darkness."

A look at the crowd.


Rabbi Lisa Grushcow from Temple Emanu-El Beth Sholom, said she called a friend in Pittsburgh who is also a rabbi. He was performing a baby naming at another congregation when the shooting took place. His synagogue went into lock down. The couple named the baby Israela.

This coming Saturday synagogues across North America will urge all Jews to come to services – a week after the tragedy occurred in Pittsburgh. It will send a true message to all of the anti-Semites out there. I spoke to Cantor Danny Benlolo at Shaare Zedek Congregation in NDG and Yechezkel Freundlich from my own Congregation Tifereth Beth David Jerusalem.

Côte Saint-Luc Men's Club throws another superb gala

The Côte Saint-Luc Men’s Club sure knows how to throw a party.

Seated: Peter Kovac, Dida Berku, Randy Berman Erdelyi, Steven Erdelyi, Jordana Kujavsky. Standing: Mayor Mitchell Brownstein, Ruth Kovac, Anthony Housefather, Mitch Kujavsky and myself.

Along with Mayor Mitchell Brownstein, other members of council,  Mount Royal Liberal MP Anthony Housefather and D’Arcy McGee Liberal MNA David Birnbaum, I was so pleased to be at the Gelber Centre for the 2018 Men’s Club Gala.

Marvin Hayman is introduced by David Gandell, with Kenny Bessner in the background.

More than 400 people enjoyed sumptuous hors d’oeuvres, music and dancing, a full course meal, speeches, awards and door prizes. It was a classy affair from beginning to end, co-chaired by District 2 resident Joe Presser and Kenny Bessner.  District 2 resident David Haltrecht, who is one talented individual, was recognized as the Man of The Year.  Volunteer Awards were handed out to Peter Sternberg, Peter Atkin and District 2’s Marvin Hayman.

David Haltrecht, myself and Beryl Peletz.

Haltrecht, the Men’s Club First Vice-President, earned a Bachelor of Engineering and an MBA. An active member of the club, he works on several committees. Professionally he designed, developed and implemented computer based systems in retail, manufacturing and restaurant environments. Using this experience, he has implemented an operation system with a web site for the Men’s Club.  For many years he was an avid sailor and also worked with model trains. Today, he has the Men’s club members working with drones.

With his children and grandchildren in the audience, David thanked his wife of 55 years Phyllis for supporting his many interests.

With the one and only Dr. Paul Weinstein.

Presser and Bessner recognized committee members Haltecht, Hayman, Sternberg,Charles Eklove, David Gandell, Beryl Peletz, Syd Kronish and president Mannie Young who was away in India.

MP Houseather made a powerful speech about  the tragedy that occurred at the synagogue in Pittsburgh, followed up by similar remarks from Birnbaum and Mayor Brownstein.

More than 30 members of the club were saluted for  being 90 years old or more – 11 were present to accept their plaques, including the ageless Mr. Peletz.

Music was provided by The Absolutes. There was also a photo booth coordinated by Mark Bessner Event Coordinators.

With more than 600 members, the Men’s Club continues to go strong. You need only be 55 join. I qualified last year.

With Joe Presser, wearing his sharp new glasses.
With my neighbours, Allen and Shirley Rosen.


With former Councillor Sam Goldbloom and Parks and Recreation Department legend Harold Cammy,


Volunteers of the Year 2018

The City of Côte Saint-Luc announced the Volunteers of the Year for 2018 at the annual Volunteer Recognition evening on October 24, 2018.  A few years ago our Parks and Recreation Department came up with a unique new format by holding this event at the Cineplex Theatre at Quartier Cavendish. All volunteers are invited to see a movie (This year it was A Star is Born), with a free soft drink, popcorn and some candy included. A pre-recorded video of the Mayor presenting the awards is shown on the big screen. Afterwards everyone is invited to a dessert reception. We remain very fortunate to have a movie theatre in our community and its represents the perfect backdrop for such an occasion. Bravo to Parks and Recreation Director Cornelia Ziga, event coordinator Laura Trihas and the rest of the team.

Here are the recipients.

The Aquatics Volunteer of the Year Award

Mitchell Brownstein and Richard LeonRichard Leon
Richard has completed two seasons with Côte Saint-Luc Aquatics. He stepped up to become the officials coordinator. He helps planning official trainings and representing Côte Saint-Luc Aquatics at Lac St-Louis swim association meetings. 

 The Community Special Events Award

Miriam Cohen
Miriam has been volunteering at the Creative Social Centre for over 20 years. She’s on the board of directors, teaches an art class, and organizes an annual vernissage for her students. 

The Eco Award

Diane JamesonDiane Jameson
Diane helped transform the garden behind the library into a beautiful space. She also developed the EARTH Project, which is an interactive 10-step program to help young people discover the joy and benefits of gardening.

The Edward J. Kirwan Award

Dmitry VassermanDmitry Vasserman
Dmitry has been a volunteer for 12 years at the CSL Figure Skating Club. He’s been on the board and has helped usher in programs like ice conditioning, ballet classes, as well as on ice stroking classes. Under his watch, the club increased the number of competitive skaters. 

The EMS Award for Excellence in operations

Peter GarishPeter Garish
Peter brings to EMS more than a decade of experience as a police officer. He has been instrumental in helping EMS revamp and overhaul its driver training program. Peter ensures that EMS drivers are fully prepared for the risks and responsibilities of driving an emergency vehicle.

The EMS Award for Excellence in Training

Steve MerlingSteve Merling
Steve returned to EMS after a decade away. He has boundless energy and enthusiasm. He now leads the community outreach program and helps recruiting new members.

The EMS Rookie of the Year Award

​Alexandre Caherecc-GagnéAlexandre Cahérec-Gagné

Alexandre has been selected amongst the 16 new recruits from the past year for his dedication and passion for the organization. Always ready to lend a hand, with his constant smile and good cheer, he is a great addition to the EMS team. 

 The Hazel Lipes Award

Hazel Lipes and David HaltrechtDavid Haltrecht
David, a District 2 resident,  uses his engineering experience to modernize operations at the Men’s Club. He implemented the online registration project for members and worked on several committees. Giving the award to David is the awards namesake, Hazel Lipes, who was elected to council in 1975. She was also the first woman ever elected to the city council. It was nice to see her at the Volunteer event after all of these years.

I was pleased to greet Hazel Lipes to our event alongside Mayor Brownstein and Councillor Ruth Kovac.

The Lifetime Achievement Award

Syd KronishSyd Kronish
Syd Kronish,a  District 2 resident, completed a four-year term as president of the Côte Saint-Luc Men’s Club. Membership doubled 350 to 700 members and the average age decreased by four years. The club also raised lots of money, including a half million dollars for Canadian Magen David Adom.

The Royal Canadian Legion Brigadier Frederick Kisch, Branch #97 Award

Awarded to the Youth Volunteer of the Year

Avi KrooAvi Kroo
Avi approached the library about starting a club for teens to teach the card game Magic: The Gathering. We has taught the game for two years now, coming each week. The game fits with the library’s goal of providing programming that piques curiosity and develops communication and problem-solving skills.

The Socio-Cultural Award

Sam Boucher
Sam has been performing with the Côte Saint-Luc Dramatic Society for three years, including in Little Shop of Horrors, The Producers, and Hairspray. Earlier this year he was the title character in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, which recently received the META award in the category of Outstanding Community Production. 

Special Recognition Award

Charles GuerinCharles Guerin
Charles,a District 2 resident, has been involved on several fronts over the last year. He shared his technical knowledge to help the city formulate its preliminary proposal for the Smart Cities Challenge competition. He has also volunteered his time at the library’s CreateSpace. He has donated equipment and helped spread the word about this library program.

 The Sports Award

Eric BettanEric Bettan
Eric has coached and served on the executive of the Côte Saint-Luc Minor Hockey program since 2013. He is heavily involved in helping to organize the novice hockey tournament every season and much more. 

The Stewart Mankofsky Memorial Trophy

Awarded to the Cote Saint-Luc athlete who best exemplifies the qualities of dedication, sportsmanship, and love for competition and fellow participants

Yuan Li WangYuan Yi Wang
Yuan Yi is a Pre-Novice competitive skater and works extremely hard reach her goals. She has received the Regional CanSkate award as well as the Test Skater award. She as devotes a lot of time helping the club's young skaters in their group programs. She is well liked and admired by her skaters and has become great role model for them.

The vCOP Award

Marty CroitoruMarty Croitoru
Marty,a  District 2 resident,  is a member of the vCOP orientation team for new recruits. He is ready to respond on a moments notice when needed. He also provides with feedback, ideas and insights on how to make vCOP more interesting and more effective.

The William E. Kesler Memorial Trophy

Awarded to a volunteer for exceptional contribution to City programs

Joel LazarovitchJoel Lazarovitz

Joel has been a head coach in our intercommunity baseball program since 2015. He has a great connection with the players on his team thanks to his positive attitude. 

David RosenbergDavid Rosenberg

David has been a head coach in our intercommunity baseball program since 2015. He is extremely dedicated, organized and well-liked by the players and parents of his teams.

Watch the Volunteers of the Year video




District 2 resident Nancy Rubin tells her story

It’s worth putting retirement on hold to guide The JGH Auxiliary in helping patients (story from the Jewish General Hospital News)



In his novel The World According to Garp, John Irving made an insightful observation that nicely describes my unexpected path to The JGH Auxiliary: “You only grow by coming to the end of something and by beginning something else.”

My end—or rather, what was supposed to be the conclusion of more than 35 years in the work force—came in 2006, when I decided to join my husband, Donny, in a well deserved retirement. Then fate intervened and I realized that, in fact, I was on the brink of, as Irving says, “beginning something else.”

To my surprise and delight, my position as Director of The Auxiliary has given me a precious opportunity to help others, while continuing to grow. For 12 years, I’ve been privileged to be part of a dedicated team of generous volunteers and top-notch professionals whose desire is to make life better for patients in our hospital.

I can’t say I had a specific career goal when I was younger. In high school, my interests were all over the map, and in the mid-1960s, there was no CEGEP to promote self-discovery in an academic setting.

What I did know was that community organizations were where I belonged. My parents, Beatrice and Saul Glassman, had leadership roles in our synagogue and other community groups, and their influence clearly rubbed off on me.

By the late 1960s, I had completed a marketing and public relations program at McGill University, and found summer jobs in a law office and at Dun & Bradstreet, where I conducted research into various companies. That set the stage for a series of fascinating and rewarding challenges over the coming decades.

“It’s gratifying to honour the legacy and values that have existed at The Auxiliary since it was founded in 1936.”

One particular highlight came in the mid-’90s, when I spent a year at McGill as a Project Director organizing the International Forum for Child Welfare. This remarkable five-day conference on legal advocacy for children brought together more than 200 delegates from over 30 countries. Planning it proved to be quite a task, since it meant staying in touch with global contacts in an era when email was rare and even faxes were uncommon.

For three years in the late ’90s, I was Special Events Coordinator for B’nai Brith Canada, which entailed organizing numerous fundraising events, including tribute dinners, galas and memorable performances by Jackie Mason, Don Rickles, Donny Osmond and Itzhak Perlman.

“Memorable” was also the word for my four years as National Executive Director for Maccabi Canada, preparing for our country’s participation in the 16th Maccabiah Games in Israel in 2001. After working intensively with coaches, athletes, parents and planners, it was a genuine thrill to walk into the opening ceremony at the Ramat Gan Stadium alongside Jewish participants from around the world!

And speaking of sports, one of my fondest memories comes the Yaldei Developmental Centre, where I was Director of Development from 2002 to 2006. In supporting children with special needs, my team and I worked with the Montreal Canadiens’ Children’s Foundation to buy an 18-seat school bus. For the grand unveiling, we filled it with Canadiens alumni and when it pulled up to the school, the first person to step out and greet the kids was Jean Beliveau.

Then Evy Uditsky, a good friend and Past President of The Auxiliary, transformed my life by strongly encouraging me to apply for the position of Auxiliary Director in 2006. At first, I was reluctant, because retirement was beckoning and I’d already turned down offers from other organizations. But Evy was so persistent and persuasive that I thought, “Why not? I still have a few good years left.” Lo and behold, I got the job, and Evvy was right: It’s been a perfect fit.

Every night, I go home feeling that what we’ve all accomplished together really matters. It’s also gratifying to honour the legacy and values that have existed at The Auxiliary since it was founded in 1936. Some of our programs, like Dr. Clown, raise the spirits of patients and staff. Others provide the hospital with much-needed equipment—notably, our Tiny Miracles program, which supports the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Do I regret not having retired all those years ago? Not for a moment. Look at what I would have missed! As John Lennon so aptly put it in one of his songs, “Life is what happens to you, while you’re busy making other plans.”

Nancy Rubin
Director, JGH Auxiliary

Artist Maxine Bloom opens a magnificent display of her work at the CSL Library

I was pleased to meet with Maxine at her display.

Maxine Bloom, a longtime constituent of mine in District 2, is a wonderfully talented artist who lives and paints in two places. Here is Côte Saint-Luc spring, summer and fall and Deerfield Beach, Florida in the winter.


Maxine’s style is mixed media and her eclectic subjects reflect her love of color and movement. She combines watercolor, acrylic and ink with collage.  As she and her husband Victor told me at the opening of an exhibit of her work at the CSL Public Library, many of the paintings are from holiday destinations of theirs.I encourage you to drop by the library anytime through November 18. Many of the 35 paintings on display are for sale, with net proceeds going towards the Cummings Jewish Centre for Seniors Foundation.  There is a price list on site. Cathy Simons oversees the latter operation. She is also a constituent.


Maxine has exhibited in group shows in Florida and has won both first and second prizes. Her work hangs in several private collections and she is delighted that others are enjoying her paintings every day.


You can reach her at



Second public information session planned on planned felling of trees behind the library

On Monday, October 29, 2018 at 7:30 pm,  we will have a public information session in the Council Chamber of Côte Saint-Luc City Hall at 7:30 pm to provide background into plans for the necessary felling of trees in Ashkelon Gardens. We had such a gathering last spring, but many of the Snowbirds were away so I felt that a repeat session is necessary at this time.

Our objective is  to ask for a few representatives, one from each area ( ie townhouses on Mackle, condos on Marc Chagall and apartments on Sir Walter Scott)  to be the reps who can contact the city with the residents' issues and concerns.   

A tree infected by the Emerald Ash Borer.

Hundreds of trees from the Ashkelon Park are infested with the Ash Borer and the Dutch Elm disease. These trees are dangerous for people who were walking in the area (from the possibility of falling branches or trees) and may even constitute a fire hazard. The city requested our  expert contractor, Nadeau Foresterie Urbaine, to prepare an inventory of the affected trees.

On February 16, 2017 (based on this inventory), the city issued a public call for tender for the felling of 255 trees under tender number C-16-17. On June 12, 2017,   Council approved the awarding of the contract for the felling of infested trees to Services d’Arbres Tessier.  

In total, we are looking towards felling approximately 300 trees and clearing approximately 21,000 buckthorn plants and bushes, a species that interferes with healthy tree growth in Ashkelon Forest.


The felling all 300 trees, all at the same time during the winter of 2018:

(a) The woodlands have been divided into three  zones:

  1.     i) East - near the back of parking lot where 10 percent of trees need to be felled 
  2.     ii) Center -  woodlands next to parking lot where 75 percent of trees need to be felled

      iii) Near Cavendish - next to the library where 95 percent of the trees need to be felled as they are all dead.

(b) The Western side of the woodlands, near Veteran's Park, will be conducted during 2019 (exact date to be determined)


A massive clearing and controlling of the 21,000 buckthorns over a period of two years. Buckthorn out-competes native plants for nutrients, light, and moisture. Buckthorn degrades wildlife habitat, contributes to erosion by shading out other plants that grow on the forest floor, serves as host to other pests, such as crown rust fungus and soybean aphid, forms an impenetrable layer of vegetation and lacks "natural controls" like insects or disease that would curb its growth.

An image of buckthorns.

(a) We will first conduct the clearing at the eastern zone, located towards the back of the City Hall parking lot. This will be conducted in 2018 because some maples can be saved and as such, the land won't look completely bare when the buckthorn is removed

(b) The western side of the woodlands near Veteran's Park, will be conducted during 2019 (exact date to be determined)


The plan is to reforest the area where we have removed the buckthorn. Of course, some of the trees will be small but we will take into account that funds must be used for mature trees too. 

We will be following the plan of action that was provided to us by Luc Nadeau foresterie urbaine.

District 2 resident Chriqui playing lead role on Smart Cities Challenge

District 2 resident Marc Chriqui is playing a key role in the development of our city's plan to win the Smart Cities Challenge.
The City of Côte Saint-Luc spoke at the fourth Annual Smart City and IoT Expo in Toronto on October 10, where it offered a preview of its eventual final proposal to the Smart Cities Challenge contest.
Councillor Dida Berku and Marc Chriqui.
“We met with a lot of people in the industry who were very excited to hear that a city is looking to tackle the issue of how to help isolated seniors stay at home longer through the use of smart technology,” said Mayor Mitchell Brownstein, who spoke along with Councillor Dida Berku and  Chriqui. “Côte Saint-Luc has a lot of programs for seniors to help keep them engaged, but the focus of our Smart Cities Challenge proposal is to help those who perhaps we don’t see at our events and who are more isolated.”
Côte Saint-Luc was selected as one of 10 finalists in its category (and one of 20 overall) by the selection committee of the Smart Cities Challenge, a contest created by the Government of Canada. Each finalist community will receive a $250,000 grant to help develop its final proposal that outline all design, planning, privacy, data protection and project management components of their plans. The grant can be used for activities such as staffing, professional services, feasibility assessments, capacity building, pilot projects, community engagement and communications, data, and relevant training. 
“The Smart Cities Challenge has given us the opportunity to brainstorm and to exchange in our city new ideas and new ways of doing things,” Councillor Berku said. “As cities, we don’t often get the chance to talk to researchers and people who are involved in seniors issues and really understand what we are trying to accomplish.”
In addition to the Smart City and IoT Expo on October 10, Côte Saint-Luc has also attended the Conference on Caregiving in Montreal on October 13, and held numerous meetings with researchers, people in industry and academia.
The next step is to launch a pilot project with seniors. The city will outfit their homes with sensors and smart devices in order to test and refine the ideas it believes can help isolated seniors live independent lives and stay at home longer. Participants must be age 65 or older, live autonomously, and have little or no caregiver support. To learn more or to participate in the pilot project, email or call 514-485-6800 ext. 5539.

From my Notebook: Roy Salomon honoured; Vineberg back at Nosherz & Saul Ettinger still carves brisket

 Bravo to Roy

One of Côte Saint-Luc’s most distinguished individuals, Roy Salomon, will be been presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award of the International Jewish Hall of Fame in 2019. This honours those individuals who have contributed to Jewish life, Israel, society and the community at large, through sports. After he first experienced the Magic of the Maccabiah Games as a basketball athlete representing Canada in 1969, Roy knew he had to stay involved with the Maccabi Movement and found other ways to get involved. His mission was to promote Canadian Jewish athletes and he has remained a pillar in the Maccabi Movement since he first got involved. In 1979 he founded the Montreal Jewish Sports Hall of Fame. From 1981 through 1985 he was Maccabi Canada’s National Athletic Chair and in 1982 led Canada’s delegation to the first JCC Maccabi Games. In 1990 he was the First Vice President of Maccabi Canada and in 1992 he was elected president, a position he held for two terms until 2001.


Roy Salomon (left) is pictured here when he was honoured by the Cummings Centre in 2013.

Roy has been the recipient of numerous awards over the years, including the Yakir Award in 2001, and in 2013 he received the Queens Diamond Jubilee Medal for volunteer work and was inducted into the Israel Softball Hall of Fame as a Builder. One of the accomplishments of which he is most proud was a proposal to bring junior athletes to participate in the World Maccabiah Games in Israel, one that he saw through to fruition with the first Juniors athletes participating in the 1985 Games. Professionally Roy has always worked in the corporate real estate field and for many years served as the managing partner of the Cavendish Mall.

The return of Robert Vineberg  at Nosherz

Robert Vineberg is back as owner of the fabulous Nosherz bakery on Westminster Avenue near Mackle. Robert had sold the operation a few years ago to focus more attention on a series of puzzle businesses. He clearly missed the excitement and can now be found behind the counter offering freshly baked goods, prepared meals, fabulous side dishes, homemade favorites, hearty soups, prepared foods made daily, a full deli and cheese counter, sandwiches, salads, catering and so much more. They also deliver now.

Robert Vineberg was always popular with his customers.

Vineberg has kept the same great staff, notably the very popular Mena. “We are a small local, long-standing neighborhood, business working hard day-after-day to bring people delicious foods,” says Robert.

“ It would be great if you could include us in your blogs and hopefully even write an article and have it printed Suburban for everyone to see (FYI - since we spoke, we stopped advertising Nosherz in the Montreal Times).

For more information call 514-484-0445 or log on to

Briskets founder Saul Ettinger has not lost his magic touch

 One of the great things of having been in office for  13 years now as a city councillor is that I get to know many of my constituents very well.  Take Saul and Farla Ettinger for example. They are wonderful people who always support my different initiatives, such as the recent benefit concert for our CSL Cats Committee.

Saul is a well-known respected restaurateur and real estate magnate, having brought us the Briskets smoked meat chain and the Il Etait Une Fois burger spot. Almost 40 years ago Saul opened his first Briskets deli on Bishop Street. Twelve franchises in Montreal and Ottawa soon followed.  As Saul says, people who remember dining at Briskets described the smoked meat sandwiches as "addictive." Briskets smoked meat was not only homemade, but it was never pumped. “Most smoked meat in Montreal and elsewhere were and still are prepared with briskets that are pumped with phosphates and a preponderance of nitrates and sodium,” he explained to me a few years ago. “This pumping technique is used in order to increase profit margins by making the briskets heavier. Strange, isn't it---the government bans the use of phosphates in your dishwasher and laundry detergent, but allows it in food? Briskets' smoked meat was made with unpumped briskets using a tightly-held secret recipe. They were dry-cured the truly old-fashioned way over a period of two to three weeks, producing superior smoked meat---smoked meat that was mouth-watering, and truly addictive.”

Briskets smoked meat sandwiches were just about everywhere, be it the Olympic Stadium concession stands or catered at private parties.   As for Il Etait Un Fois, the classic hamburger spot was located in a standalone building in heart of Old Montreal at a time when it was a relative ghost town, Saul recalls pioneering a new phenomenon. While McDonald's was selling burgers for as little as 60 cents, he decided it was time to introduce Montreal to a gourmet half-pound burger at $5. In those days, the thought of a burger for $5 was ludicrous. Yet, within a short few weeks, Il Etait Un Fois attracted huge line-ups and rave reviews. Saul's burgers were made through a rarely used secret process that turned out the juiciest and most scrumptious burgers in Montreal. And along with mouth-watering burgers and incredible fries, the menu included specialities such as homemade beer-battered onion rings and fish n' chips as well as fried mushrooms and foot-long dogs.

Another of Saul's visions was launched on the Trans Canada, Linguini, an Italian restaurant situated in a rustic log cabin built by Saul on the south side of the 40 just west of Morgan.  

Saul Ettinger carves away in his condo.

Long retired from the restaurant business, Saul still hosted dinners and parties where he serves his amazing smoked meat.  When I saw him at the cats concert I jokingly asked if he planned to make any briskets. Two days later I got a call to come to his condo. My brisket was ready. When I arrived Farla presented me with a special fork which Saul used to demonstrate to me how to carve the huge piece of meat. It was absolutely delicious. Boy Quartier Cavendish could use a Briskets franchise if Saul ever considers reviving it!


Loved or reviled, tempos may soon come to Côte Saint-Luc driveways

Here is a CBC Story about our plan to allow tempos in CSL. For the record I am very much in favor of this proposal.

Bylaw would make it one of few suburban Montreal cities to allow temporary car shelters

Arnold Cohen says a tempo on his driveway would be an improvement to his quality of life because he wouldn't have to shovel out his family cars after big storms. (Elias Abboud/CBC Montreal)

When you look inside Arnold Cohen's garage, you can see bikes, boxes and hockey equipment.

But there's no car.

"It's the classic, where the nice cars are in the driveway and the junk is in the garage," said Cohen.

Even if the garage were empty, Cohen says there would not be enough room for either of his family's cars.

That's why Cohen says he'd erect a temporary car shelter, known by its popular moniker "tempo," if a draft bylaw making its way through Côte Saint-Luc city council passes.

Bylaw 2217 would allow residents of Côte Saint-Luc to install a tempo on their driveway for the winter months.

Cohen pays for a snow-removal contractor to clear his double-wide driveway after storms. He says the contractor arrives in the morning before he leaves for work, but only manages to clean the snow from behind the cars parked in his driveway.

That leaves more work for the 53-year-old lawyer.

"You have to dig the cars out in between to be able to get into the cars, and then shovel out the cars," said Cohen.

"You have to clean off the snow, clean off the ice. It's a real pain."

Almost every house in Côte Saint-Luc has a garage. However, most are barely wide enough to accommodate a regular-sized car. (Elias Abboud/CBC Montreal)

Narrow garages

Almost every detached home in the suburban Montreal community has a garage, and the tempos were deemed unnecessary as a result. But the garages are small, barely wide enough to fit a modern car. Many families also have more than one vehicle.

The city has given exemptions to about 120 homeowners who do not have a garage or permanent car shelter on their property. They were the lucky few allowed to erect a tempo.

The city's mayor, Mitchell Brownstein, says Côte Saint-Luc has changed over the years, to the point where more people are demanding to be allowed to erect a tempo.

Côte Saint-Luc Mayor Mitchell Brownstein says he'll withdraw the draft bylaw and rework it if there is too much opposition.(Elias Abboud/CBC Montreal)

He said more families have two or three cars, and allowing them to park under a sheltered driveway would get vehicles off the streets and help with the city's snow-removal operation.

Brownstein said the city also has a large senior population, about one-third of Côte Saint-Luc, that needs to be considered.

"They have a hard time cleaning their car in the winter, and there's the danger of falling on the ice," said Brownstein.

Opposition to the tempo

Not everyone shares Arnold Cohen's enthusiasm for the tempo. At a recent public consultation on the shelters, a number of residents spoke out against allowing them.

"I do not want tempos because I really think they're an eyesore," said Morrie Baker.

He worries that the shelters would provide an opportunity for burglars to enter cars and homes without being seen. He also questioned whether allowing the long, white carports for four or five months a year would bring down property values.

"We do know there are some people in our city that find them ugly," said Brownstein.

"Most of those people still don't want to oppose the bylaw because they understand the need."

Despite their unsightliness, many people in Côte Saint-Luc are willing to accept the tempo.

"They're practical, but very ugly," said Pinedale Ave. resident Elaine Silberman.

"Aesthetically, it's going to make a difference here. But if somebody wanted it, it would be okay with me."

Residents opposed to tempos can sign registers at city hall, triggering a referendum on the draft bylaw. Brownstein said if there is a lot of opposition, he would withdraw the bylaw and rework it to reflect concerns of the population.

If the bylaw passes, Côte Saint-Luc residents could be setting up their tempos before the snow flies.