You can’t beat a Whippet.
No that’s not the dog, it’s a somewhat decadent chocolate-coated treat with a marshmallow-topping, which is more than a century old. Viewing Quebec from a distance of 4000 km, it’s sometimes difficult to find the more intriguing news items. The Digital Gazette is one way of searching and the RSS news feed lists most of the items of interest. However I found this particular item in the fine blog written by Kate McDonnell in a piece entitled, The Whippet Cookie’s Role In Our History.
The cookie in question made its debut in 1900 in Montreal and was cooked by the Whippet and Viau Biscuits Corp. Charles-Theodore Viau had started the enterprise in a small bakery in Montreal’s east end in 1867 and created the “Village” cookie – a plain, but hugely popular shortbread that Quebecers loved to dunk in their tea. Viau became history in March 2004 when the company was sold to Kitchener, Ont.-based Dare Foods Inc., another family-owned business, and the factory was closed. Apparently the original Whippet is still the second bestselling cookie in Quebec today. The No. 1 cookie in the province is the Dare Foods’ “Bearpaws,” a popular molasses cookie. Dare markets the “Viva Puff,” a similar cookie to the Whippet, in Ontario. However the Quebec Whippet has “real” chocolate while its counterpart is made with a “compound” chocolate.
You can find more about the Whippet in the Viau: Cookie History exhibition at the Ecomus�e du fier monde, a small museum in Montreal’s east end. The exhibition is open until March 23, 2008. For more details, see the press release, Decadent chocolate-coated cookie contributed to Montreal’s growth.
For information on interesting Montreal places to visit, see
Frommer’s Montreal & Quebec City 2009 Guide (Frommer’s Complete)
Montreal & Quebec City For Dummies (Dummies Travel)