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Veggie takeout never the same twice

You may have passed Santé-Vous Bien walking through Monkland Village and never noticed it, but it’s a location worth checking out. This mother-daughter establishment, run by Gigi Cohen and her daughter Jessy, serves great vegetarian and vegan food that will satisfy those familiar with the cuisine, and surprise those still skeptical of its capability to be made delicious.

On a crisp autumn afternoon my companion and I took advantage of these last beautiful days to sit at one of the patio tables and sample two dishes: quinoa with sun-dried cranberries and toasted walnuts, and tofu with noodles and marinated vegetables in a tangy peanut butter and ginger sauce. Quinoa and other grains often get a bad rap for being boring and bland, as does tofu, but these were filled with many flavour surprises.

Cooking is Gigi’s creative outlet, and her passion. “There are no set recipes, and no dish is ever exactly the same,” she animatedly explained to us. “I used to paint when I was a little girl – I loved expressing myself creatively. Now the kitchen is my canvas.” She and Jessy offer an ever-changing variety of vegan and vegetarian meals, including pastas, soups, salads, quiches, tofu, vegetable patties, muffins, cakes, cookies and energy balls.

Everything comes in 3 container sizes for takeout, and is made daily from scratch. A specially-marked shelf offers a variety of half-price day-old dishes. Our sampling proved they are still fresh and delicious.

In addition to cooking these delights, Gigi and Jessy offer a catering service and prepare made-to-order food for specific needs, such as nutritional juices for people on a temporary liquid diet, or dishes adapted to those with diabetes or food sensitivities or post-surgical dietary restrictions.

Santé-Vous Bien is the only establishment of its kind in the area. It’s primarily takeout but there’s seating inside if you can’t help yourself and have to eat on the spot.

Santé-Vous Bien opens 10-7 weekdays and 10-6 on weekends at 5568 Monkland, between Second Cup and Ben & Jerry’s.

Info: 514-487-7575



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