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Jan 22, 2008 12:29 PM


Going to Montreal for a long weekend. Any place I shouldn't miss?

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  1. I assume you did search the many previous posts and could not find an answer to your question.

    so :
    how many meals are you talking about ?
    budget ? low, mid, high, sky is the limit ?
    style ? family, neighbourhood, destination restaurant, fine dining ?
    cuisine type ? veggy french, bistro type, italian, greek, quebec ? speciality, ... ?
    afraid ot public transport, walking distance only ? car/no car ?

    1. That's about as broad as "I'm heading to New York - where should I eat"? ;-)

      Here are some "best of" and other pretty comprehensive threads to get you started:

      When you're ready to get a bit more specific, we're here!

      10 Replies
      1. re: kpzoo

        Sorry, I should have been more specific. Am flying in on Thursday afternoon, leaving on Sunday afternoon. Have a res. for Thurs. evening at Pied au Cochon (I am a real lover of fois gras, any way, shape or form!). Have an evening res. for L'Express (recommended by friends) and am planning to have breakfast one morning at Cosmos.
        Outside of that, any recommendations? I don't mind spending hard earned money for fabulous food. Love all food, specifically Montreal's specalities and anything that contains fois gras!
        Thanks again, and--sorry I was not more specific.

        1. re: eastvillagegirl

          Personally, I was quite inspired with Phoenix ChowHounder Seth Chadwick's report of his recent trip to Mtl:

          I might suggest that if you want to try a couple of Montreal specialities, you must try our smoked meat at Schwartz's, try a poutine (his description of La Québécoise is great though it's a bit off the beaten path - you can certainly find poutine elsewhere), and try some of our bagels at St. Viateur or Fairmount. Just be warned that smoked meat is not the same as the pastrami or corned beef you might be used to, and Montreal bagels are not the same as NY bagels. You might also want to take a trip to the Jean-Talon market if you're into cheeses, amazing ice cream, great produce (though much less than in summer/fall) and many other yummy things.

          And Cosmos is a wonderful idea, but try not to go on the same day you're going to Au Pied or else you won't have room for dinner. They make the best homefries in the city, IMO! Also be warned that they only have a few seats inside so in the winter it's not a practical place to go with more than 1 or 2 other people, especially after 10 on the weekends.

          Enjoy your trip!

          1. re: kpzoo

            Thank you, kpzoo! Schwartz's is on our list, as well as the market
            Any other ideas for dinner? Fois gras would be a plus. We are staying downtown, but, we will travel anywhere for great fois gras!

            1. re: eastvillagegirl

              Depending on how far overboard you go, there's a very good chance Picard and crew will cure you of the need to even look at foie gras for the rest of 2008. In the remote event that should not be the case, let me echo phedre's recommendation of P'tit Plateau. Reserve for the second service, unless being chucked out to "make way for the live ones" is your idea of fun. Joe Beef is another good choice (besides PdC) for hearty, generous, market-based cooking and I'm pretty sure they'll have some version of foie you'll enjoy.

              Have fun in Montreal.

            2. re: kpzoo

              I have to warn though that when I was at JTM last saturday, the ice cream shop (Hâvre-aux-glaces) was closed for renovations.

            3. re: eastvillagegirl

              I am probably alone in this, but I'd recommend LeMeac or P'tit Plateau over L'Express, which I find overhyped, and the staff tends to be rude. But the food's decent, and it is classic french bistro, so if you don't mind the snottiness, it's a good place to go!

              You have to hit up Fairmount or St. Viateur for some hot, fresh Montreal bagels for breakfast, bring them with you to Caffe in Gamba on Parc and Fairmount for their delicious espresso.

              1. re: phedre

                I agree completely. I would avoid L'Express for the reasons mentioned...there are definitely better choices for a visitor.

                BTW, Fairmount bagels are far superior to St. Viateur.

                1. re: davidpg

                  Ok, break it up, break it up

                  Eastvillagegirl, I did warn you previously that bagels are a bit of a sore spot right now? davidpg is attempting to restart the great Fairmount-St. Viateur bagel debate. It is similar to the NYC vs. Montreal bagel debate, ie. there will never be a conclusion, it will go on like the Hundred Years War.

                  Fairmount and St. Viateur are within walking distance of each other, and it would be very easy to do a taste test if you like that sort of thing.

                  Ahh and it is winter, so hot chocolate is a great way to warm up. Many fine establishments serve excellent versions of the stuff, including Festin du Babette and Suite 88 on St. Denis, and Juliette et Chocolat at 2 different stores...

              2. re: eastvillagegirl

                I'm not sure if you've mentioned this, so I have to ask: do you like foie gras?
                You should also head down the 401 (it's a highway) to Hamilton; apparently, they have some pretty good Montreal-style bagels.

                1. re: rillettes

                  ROFLOL!!!!!! Even my hubbie is laughing!

                  Eastvillagegirl, please disregard last sentence of rillette's post, this is a sore point with us Montrealais right now...

            4. Le Margaux on Park ave is one of my favourite restaurants and great value for the price.Several dishes involve foie gras,one of the best is the trout :two slightly crispy filets on top of various vegetables and a lovely little piece of sauteed foie gras between the filets !there is also a first course of foie gras three ways, delicious...also,you can have a bottle of wine for 20 dollars if you want and both white and red are more than decent.

              1. The Kitchen Gallerie on Jean Talon near the market had a few Foie Gras choices on the menu when I ate there, though the menu is different every day so you'd have to inquire. Not sure if you have heard of it but the chefs cook as well as wait on the guests.