Just Opened: Bishop and Bagg Pub

Burgundy Lion fans and devotees have a reason to celebrate. Why? Because the boys behind this cult-status pub in the heart of Little Burgundy have JUST opened their brand new venture, Bishop & Bagg (52 St-Viateur), in the Mile End neighbourhood. Since this spot is spankin’ new, what better to get a feel for it than to catch up with co-owner and man about town Toby Lyle. Here’s the 411 on what might just be your favourite new hangout.

Let’s talk about the name first, Bishop & Bagg. How did that come about?
An English pub is traditionally named after something historical from the surrounding area, so since we are located on the corner of St-Viateur and Clark ,we did some research and came up with some very interesting local history.

The Bishop
Monsignor Ignace Bourget was Bishop of Montreal from 1840 to 1876. He was instrumental in the city’s growth and the growth of the Roman Catholic church in Quebec. In 1841, Bourget travelled to France and other parts of Europe in order to recruit missionaries to the new world. His invitation to establish missions in Montreal was accepted by various religious groups, notably the Clerics of St-Viator, the namesake of the street, St-Viateur.

Ironically in 1853, Monsignor Bourget also founded the Annales de la tempérance, a society dedicated to the goal of temperance.

The Bagg
Stanley Clark Bagg was a notary, large landowner and justice of the peace in the mile-end neighbourhood of Montreal in the mid-19th century. He was a philanthropist who founded the “English Workingmen’s Benefit Society,” which supported hundreds of local families. He donated many of his lands to the city, including the land that is now Jarry Park. Bagg died in his family’s manor house, Fairmount, in 1873. The city of Montreal remembered him by naming three streets in his honour: Fairmount, Bagg and, of course, Clark, our cross street.

Who are all the parties involved in the opening?
This is a Burgundy Lion group project so it involves all the founders and owners of the Burgundy Lion. Toby Lyle, Jean-Michel Creusot, Paul Desbaillets and Will Allen. We’re also happy to add Steven Owen to our team. He was the General Manager of the Burgundy for over five years and has come on with us as a partner in the new place.

What’s the overall concept?
Whereas the Burgundy Lion is a modern urban pub, the Bishop & Bagg is more of a traditional rural pub. Although the menu is not traditional English pub cuisine, the service and ambiance are. Customers place their order at the bar, grab their drinks and then have their food brought to them.

Let’s talk menu…
Our Chef, Pelo, has created food that fits the warmth and comfort of the room. We haven’t restricted ourselves to British cuisine, or any other specific form of cuisine for that matter. As Pelo says, quoting Bruce Lee, “it is the style of no style.” We simply want to make great, affordable food. Our menu will be changing constantly but our opening menu has items such as pork belly salad, mushroom rarebit, ploughman’s lunch, lamb kebabs, jerk Cornish hen, steak and my personal favourite, grilled whole trout.

How and why did you choose the location?
We chose the location because we’ve been searching to do another pub in Montreal and really liked the Mile End neighbourhood. I find that Mile End is very similar to what Little Burgundy was six years ago when we opened the Burgundy Lion; it seems to be a neighbourhood in the midst of very positive change.

Are you open seven days a week as of now?
This week we are only open at night and closed Sunday. Next week starting Tuesday we will be open for lunches at 11:30am and we never close before 3am, but are still closed Sundays. In mid-March we will be opening for breakfast on Saturday and Sunday, and doing a carvery, or weekly roast, on Sunday afternoons, where we will make a different family-style roast each week, be it pork, beef or poultry. We will also be open to show football (soccer) games on the weekends and when there are games throughout the week.

Their website, bishopandbagg.com, should be up and running within the next 24-48 hours. Meanwhile, check out their Facebook page for info.

#LYNL | (Live Your Notable Life)

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