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Kwizzinn
Photograph: Kwizzinn / kwizzinn.ca

Kwizinn's headquarters for Haitian eats is now on the menu in Verdun

Michael Lafaille and Claudia Fiorilli have relocated their Haitian restaurant Kwizinn's headquarters to Verdun's booming Wellington Street.

By JP Karwacki
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As of September 4, Verdun can now lay claim to having some of the best Caribbean food in the city with the relocation of Michael Lafaille and Claudia Fiorilli's Kwizinn.

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The 'new' operation is somewhat of a circling back for Lafaille, who had originally lived in Verdun for years and had originally planned to open in the neighbourhood before opening Kwizinn's Petit Patrie location in July 2019. It remains there as an express location serving takeout and delivery, but is placed on a strip of the city that's currently bogged down in some major gutting and reconstruction.

Now with a larger dining room and live music like steel drums, hip-hop and Caribbean folk, the restaurant's heating things up with plates both signature and classic, with recipes handed down from Lafaille’s nanny in Port-Au-Prince. Plates of pork griot, djon-djon (black mushroom) rice, and accras take center stage with specialties like plantain poutine with lobster, a burger served on plantain 'bread', and donuts served with whipped mascarpone banana cream. House cocktails and Haitian beer's up for grabs as well.

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A legally blind chef who worked for some time at Montreal dining-in-the-dark restaurant O Noir, Lafaille originally came to Montreal after Haiti's 2010 earthquake. Since then, his restaurant joins the growing number of black-owned businesses bringing Caribbean and Créole cuisines to the new creative horizons in the city.

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