CBC Daybreak took its show to Café Milano in St-Léonard, the heart of Montreal's Italian community.  

Here's what three Italian-Montrealers are doing to remake old traditions for a new generation.

Old-school cooking

Danny ''Smiles'' Francis is a lover of old-school Italian cooking

He is head chef and co-owner Le Bremner restaurant in Old Montreal.

Danny grew up speaking Italian and cooking Italian-style at home with his parents and grandparents in the Montreal borough of Anjou. 

He never expected to cook professionally.

In fact, his parents did not want him to become a chef. They were hoping for a lawyer.

But once Danny decided to embark on that course, he persisted, building a career cooking classic Italian dishes like cacio e pepe (cheese + pepper).

Today, he shares his love for classic Italian recipes and cooking techniques though his video interview series for Vice, Old-School Italian Cooking With Danny Smiles.

Grande grande grande​ 
Alessandra Tropeano

Alessandra Tropeano sings classic Italian songs that were hits many decades ago. (Submitted by: Alessandra Tropeano)

Alessandra Tropeano is a singer and organizer of arts events in the Montreal-Italian community

She sings classic Italian songs, in Italian.

She grew up in Laval, speaking – and singing – in Italian.

As a teen, she entered an Italian singing competition with her sister Felicia, and she hasn't stopped performing since.

Now, 10 years later, she sings regularly at fundraisers and community and private events – and always in Italian.

Audiences love her renditions of classic Italian songs such as Grande grande grande, a number 1 hit in Italy more than 40 years ago.

Tropeano says people are surprised and happy to see a young Italian-Montrealer performing older songs in Italian.

Handmade suits

Sandro Battaglia is a tailor and the co-owner of Battaglia and Aly, located in Little Italy.

Sandro Battaglia

Sandro Battaglia is a tailor and the co-owner of the menswear boutique Battaglia and Aly. (Submitted by: Sandro Battaglia)

That's where he and his team design and produce high-end menswear.

Battaglia grew up in Rivière-des-Prairies, watching and helping his tailor father, a Sicilian immigrant, at work.

His own flair for fashion showed itself early.

He wore bow ties to kindergarten, and a fur hat to church.

When he decided become a tailor professionally, his parents were opposed. They said it was a dying industry, and the work was too hard.

However, Battaglia was betting on a tailoring revival, and he was right.

Today, his thriving Montreal company creates more than 500 handmade suits a year.