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May 3, 2007 06:33 PM

Going Next Weekend - Montreal Restaurant Recommendations?

Hi -
I'm going to Montreal with my husband next weekend (5/11-5/14) and am relatively new to Chowhound (and this is my first post :) but a foodie with a love of French food. I will be arriving late on Friday (9ish) and leaving Monday if there is any recomm. for good restaurants open late that would be great. I also LOVE foie gras so any restaurants that has a signature dish or speciality we would love to try it (we've heard of Au Pied de Cochon). Lunch, dinner, even sightseeing recommendations very much welcome. Thanks!

- Margaret from San Fran

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  1. Au Pied du Cochon will take reservations until at least 10 on a Friday. L'Express's kitchen stays open till 2 a.m. Leméac has a fabulous special after 10 p.m.: starter, main and coffee/tea for $22. Wine bar BU serves nibbles and pizza after 10.

    For other restaurants on other evenings, read through the recent discussions to get an idea of what interests you. Also, check the guide linked to in the left-hand column of endless banquet . People will be happy to answer any questions you then have.

    20 Replies
    1. re: carswell

      Wow - thank you! The endless banquet is a great site! We were in Spain late 2005 and loved Tapas and Pinxtos so can't wait to try Tapeo as well. Anything you recommend at Lemeac or APDC? I'm also interested in trying a place called Pintoxs - have you been? IThank you again :)

      1. re: margaretsanfran

        My recent experience at Leméac is limited almost exclusively to the late-night menu. The starters are all excellent; faves include the minestrone, vegetable tian, chèvre chaud and, above all, the pasta with snails and confit tomatoes. The only main that leaves me cold is the duck confit; the veal liver is superb, the hanger steak classic, the boudin unique and the salmon pot au feu like something from grandma's kitchen. (Hey, what happened to the Cornish game hens with polenta frites?!) Others rave about their desserts but I've always found them competent rather than inspired and I've never quite got over ordering a "seasonal fruit cup" in August that consisted of Granny Smith apples, orange sections and kiwi fruit...

        The local seafood season is starting or about to start at APDC. The whole fish roasted in the wood oven (just ask what they're stuffing it with and, if it's a powerful herb like tarragon, tell them to use a light hand), the seafood platters and the lobster rolls with foie gras are not to be missed. Other than that, anything with foie and/or potatoes.

        Pintxo is great. Tapeo is the more classic tapas bar but Pintxo provides a more intimate and refined dining experience.

        1. re: carswell

          I went to Leméac a few months ago and the cornish game hen had disappeared off the menu, then again a couple of weeks ago, and it was back on.

          A friend of mine ordered it once and as I recall it wasn't the greatest. My favourite starter is the chèvre croustillant, and I'm partial to the short rib as a main.

          For dessert, I'd inquire as to what the dessert of the week might be. They once offered a chocolate trilogy that made me melt.

          1. re: mainsqueeze

            "A friend of mine ordered it once and as I recall it wasn't the greatest."

            The Cornish game hen is a Cornish game hen, nothing more, nothing less. The accompanying polenta fries are killer. I like the short rib, too.

        2. re: margaretsanfran

          I was at le Pied de Cochon yesterday evening. We shared a foie gras poutine (I always try to pretend it's nothing extraordinary...but it is very good) and I had the most amazing bison rib. I strongly recommend it.
          Also, for everyone who's interested, Martin told me that fish and seafood will start to arrive at PdC on May 22nd. Yay!

          1. re: margaretsanfran

            Just in case you do an internet search. The place is neither called Pinxtos or Pintoxs. The proper spelling is Pintxo.

            It has to be the most often mispelled name on this board.



            1. re: SnackHappy

              Well, not many Basque speakers, eh? It is one of the most difficult languages in the world to learn, for non-Basques. I know a Swedish guy in Bayonne who learned Basque.

              Thanks for the websites! Must check out Tapeo sometime; it is not far from where I live.

            2. re: margaretsanfran

              A "starter" at Lemeac that is always a delight: "Snails, portabella mushrooms and tomato ragout, basil butter sauce." And their grilled veal in morel sauce with aligot puree is so good as a "main" I have a hard time passing it up for anything else (I don't think it is on the late-night bargin menu, though).

              1. re: Fritzy

                Thanks everyone for the recommendations! Carswell - thanks for great insight - bummed that I will miss lobster rolls and foie gras! SnackHappy - thank you for the links and the correct spelling for pintxo- I was looking and could not find it. Fritzy - I love escargot and may need to see how I can squeeze Lemeac in there. Here's my food itinerary. What I'm struggling with is doing APDC so late in my itinerary - is this a place your (heart and arteries) could do 2x in one weekend (I'm a huge f.gras fan) and since I get in at 9:15PM into Montreal and have customs, etc. can I get to a 10:30 at Tapeo (hence the backup at Lemarac). I have two meals that are TBD. Any thoughts most appreciated:

                Friday Dinner - 10:30PM - Tapeo
                Friday Dinner (back-up) - 11:30PM - Lemeac
                Saturday Brunch - 1:00PM - Le’Express ( I really want to try the b. marrow here – do you know if it would be on the lunch menu?)
                Saturday Dinner- 8:30PM- Pintxos
                Sunday Brunch/Lunch – TBD (Le Cartet perhaps)
                Sunday Dinner - 8:00PM- Au Pied de Cochon
                Monday Breakfast – TBD (needs to be earlier as I have a 12:00 meeting)

                Two other questions - 1) I'm wondering if you can recommend a good place for multicourse dinner with wine pairing and 2) if Toque! would be a good place to add? We've been to v. nice restaurants before like French Laundry (3 Mich.Stars) in the Napa and Michael Minas (2 Mich.Stars) in SF. Both were a disappointment considering the price and reputation and I guess we were expecting more and they were pretentious.

                1. re: margaretsanfran

                  Regarding APDC, depending on your self control (or lack of it), you may not want that Monday breakfast. I've eaten there and not been hungry the next day.

                  1. re: margaretsanfran

                    *Wow* - that's quite the inspiring meal itinerary, makes me want to play the tourist in my own town some time!!!

                    > Sunday Brunch/Lunch – TBD (Le Cartet perhaps)

                    For brunch, you might want to try Byblos, an Iranian cafe that has really unusual, delicious brunches. On my first recent trip there I had their rose-water omelet with an assortment of breads & delectable orange-blossom preserves.

                    1499 Avenue Laurier Est, H2J 1h8, Montreal, Quebec, Canada - (514) 523-9396


                    1. re: kpzoo

                      How about Reservoir for Sunday brunch? Great fish & they make a simple two egg & bacon plate a gourmet experience...
                      Or La croissanterie Figaro?
                      It sounds like you need something close by your hotel - where will you be staying?

                      1. re: Joy of food

                        I'm staying at the softiel - I have not idea where that is exactly - if thats old town, or plataue. We are willing to travel and walk for good food :)

                        1. re: margaretsanfran

                          "I'm staying at the softiel - I have not idea where that is exactly"

                          Central downtown a couple of blocks west of the McGill campus. You're in easy walking distance of all of downtown, 15-20 minutes by foot from the St-Laurent glitz strip, 20-25 minutes from St-Denis (Plateau and Quartier Latin) and Old Montreal. Public transportation connections are good and taxis not outrageous.

                          1. re: carswell

                            Thansk Carswell! Do you have any recs for wine pairing dinners or thoughts on going to Toque! Amazingly I was able to reservations today via open table for 9PM on Saturday. Also - I was thinking of trying to get to ADPC on Friday night then and Pintxos on Sunay. ADPC don't have reservations available but I'll get there around 11:30PM so I'm hoping it will have thinned out (they said it probably won't) Any thoughts?

                    2. re: margaretsanfran

                      There's always Bone Marrow on the menu at l'Express.
                      One hidden secret at l'Express, is the 2nd wine list; much more complete than the default one on the back side of the menu.

                      One suggestion for high end experience is "La Chronique" (

                      1. re: margaretsanfran

                        Wow--great line-up! If you love French food I would put Toque in place of Tapeo, only because you are heading to Pintxo on Saturday so that seems like a lot of tapas (even though they are definitely very different places). Toque can be fairly pretentious too (they might pretend to be surprised you are trying to reserve a table 'only' a week in advance), but the food is very,very good, and their fois gras is excellent (my hubby is from south-western France, (we just returned from vacationing) and I would put Toque fois gras up against many that we have eaten over there).

                        Have a great weekend!

                        1. re: foodismyfriend

                          Thanks! Have you done the 7 course with winepairing for Toque and do you get to choose courses or do they choose for you?? We might do it on Saturday night instead.

                          1. re: margaretsanfran

                            This is likely too late a reply--but I have not done the 7 course but hubby has and doesn't recommend it, likely because he is a bit of a wine snob and is never quite happy with recommendations from the sommelier.

                            Post about the food when you can!!!

                            1. re: foodismyfriend

                              Yes magaretsanfran, please do let us know how your weekend went.