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Jun 18, 2007 07:50 AM

Boston restaurant/beer bar owner looking for sound food advice for first trip to Montreal

Looking for tips as to the places with creative, high quality food and comfortable atmosphere with casual dress code. Outdoor terrace and/or solid craft beer list would be a plus. NO tourist traps please! We will be based in Old Montreal for three nights the 27th-30th of June. Thanks ahead for your help.

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  1. I'm from Boston and returned recently from a terrific trip to Montreal. The dining highlight for us was absolutely Au Pied de Cochon. It's very casual, more so than I imagined even though I had read a great deal about the resto. They don't have a terrace but the large front windows were all open when I was. The entire meal was a fantastic experience. Unfortunately they do not have much of a beer list. They've got a house brew that was fine and a couple English ales (think I'm recalling correctly). The focus here is really on the wine, which had wonderful by the glass options.

    6 Replies
    1. re: kittychow

      Glad you had a good experience at Au Pied. The beer list is, as you say, not extensive. APdC features the beers of McAuslan, a local microbrewer.

      McAuslan itself has a very nice terrace located on the Lachine Canal. They serve a casual menu, but I don't think it's any great shakes, gastronomically.

      1. re: rcianci

        IMHO, if you're going to feature a brewer you could hardly do better than McAuslan. Any idea if "Pied de Cochon" beer is a McAuslan product, and if so which McAuslan-branded brew it most closely resembles?

        1. re: Mr F

          I've heard that McAuslan makes the house brew at PDC. Sadly I have not yet tried it so I cannot comment on which style it most resembles.

          1. re: Mr F

            Unless they've changed suppliers recently, the PdC beer is brewed by McAuslan. Closest in style to Griffon Extra Pale, I'd say. APDC also has, or used to have, regular St-Ambroise Pale Ale and St-Ambroise Stout, both models of their kind.

            Brewpubs with great food aren't legion. Réservoir's food is great and beer pretty good. L'Amère à boire's Czech-style Cerna Hora is world-class but the food is hardly cutting-edge (the lambburger is worth a lunchtime detour, however). Le Sergent Recuteur's beer is OK but the pizzas are reportedly lackluster. Dieu du Ciel's beer is arguably the city's best overall but the food is limited to snacks. Snacks also reign at Le Cheval Blanc, whose idiosyncratic beers are always fun. Brewtopia offers one of downtown's better selections of sandwiches. I've yet to visit newbie Benelux, though they do bill themselves as a café.

            1. re: carswell

              According to Brutopia's website, they are open 3 to 3 daily except they open at noon on Friday. So except for Friday, that would be a late lunch. (I like their IPA there).

              1. re: Fritzy

                I second the recommendation on the IPA, though I've recently been told that the Cask Ale (only available in the basement) is a must-try. I would also say I can vouch for Benelux, drink- and atmosphere-wise, but I'm not often hungry at 2 in the morning. A pretty unique selection, but probably best reserved for a different thread.

      2. I second the Au Pied de Cochon recommendation. As you say, creative, high-quality food and comfortable atmosphere, with casual dress code. Local ingredients (lots of foie gras), Incredible seafood, and an idiosyncratic chef/owner who really understands hospitality.

        1. French pub chain les 3 Brasseurs has several locations here, and brew in each and every one of them.. They only sell their own beer too, and it's superb, and cheap! a litre for 8.50! The food's not bad either.

          5 Replies
          1. re: C70

            The beer at Les 3 Brasseurs is alright, but the food is chain restaurant fare. I wouldn't recommend it.

            1. re: SnackHappy

              Anyone tried Forquet Fourchet owned by Unibroue? We sell a lot of Unibroue's beers here and I'm told the restaurant is good. Thoughts?

              1. re: marlysdad

                I'd like to know, too. Because anything that involves period costumes automatically falls off my radar. I would never go there just to check it out.

                1. re: SnackHappy

                  Period costumes? God help me. Forget it.

                  1. re: marlysdad

                    I went to the one in Chambly about six years ago and ordered a flight of beers on the terrasse, which was enjoyable. Didn't eat there, however. The wait staiff are all in period costumes (yikes). I recall that there was one section of the menu devoted to amerindian dishes.