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He's the scion of one of Canada's most famous families. She's a member of one of Montreal's fanciest clans. And they're set to merge.

Television personality Ben Mulroney, the eldest son of former prime minister Brian Mulroney, got engaged to his girlfriend Jessica Brownstein last Friday.

Ms. Brownstein, a fashion stylist and designer, is quite literally from a well-heeled Montreal family.

The Brownstein family is behind the Browns shoe retail empire, founded by Ms. Brownstein's great uncle Morton Brownstein in 1940. Her second cousin, Michael Brownstein, is now the company's CEO.

Her parents, Stephen and Veronica Brownstein, are described as being in the "textile industry."

But the proposal was anything but high fashion. The Canadian Idol and eTalk Daily host proposed to Ms. Brownstein over lunch at Nick's, a Montreal diner.

The couple, who have been dating for about a year, have known each other since they were teenagers, according to Mr. Mulroney's Canadian Idol spokeswoman, Allie Page.

Mr. Mulroney, 31, and Ms. Brownstein, 28, were both raised in the tony anglophone enclave of Westmount. Nick's, a neighbourhood institution, is a spot they've visited since they were children.

"They just blend in. There's never any commotion. They're very friendly," manager Karyn Doke said yesterday. "I hear they were introduced here."

Last Friday, the restaurant was bustling, so the couple had to sit at the counter, where Mr. Mulroney popped the question.

Before Ms. Brownstein, Mr. Mulroney dated Wendy Merry, a film publicist from Los Angeles, and former Breakfast Television host Liza Fromer.

No wedding date has been set, but if the nuptials of Mr. Mulroney's older sister were any indication, it may be a lavish affair. In September, 2000, Caroline Mulroney wed Andrew Lapham, the son of former Harper's magazine editor Lewis Lapham, in Montreal. The 400-guest event was attended by such notables as Queen Noor of Jordan and former U.S. president George Bush. It featured a performance by Vancouver singer Michael Bublé.

While Mr. Mulroney and Ms. Brownstein declined to comment yesterday, friends of the couple were quick to give their congratulations.

"She's vivacious, and spirited and lovely," said Seamus O'Regan, a friend of Mr. Mulroney since their days as co-hosts on CTV's Chatroom, via e-mail. "And he's smitten."

The engaged duo's ordering style may be a clue that they are, indeed, fans of stability and routine.

"She always eats a salad," Ms. Doke says. "And he always eats a bacon cheeseburger with fries. And a Black Cherry [cola]"