Top 5 (or 10) must eats for 1 week in Montreal
My girlfriend and I be in Montreal for one week next August for the Rogers Cup tennis tournament and we're looking for tips on must eats. L’Express, Au Pied de Cochon, Schwartz’s are already on the list, as is Toque for our splurge dinner, but we'd greatly appreciate any recommendations. We’re open to all cuisines and we love good street food as much as a 4-star tasting menu. We’ll be staying either around Sq. St. Louis or up around the Laurier/Mont Royal metro stations (haven’t decided yet – any advice?). Thanks.
Here's a list of some of my favoirite MTL restaurants and dives that I use to dazzle any visiting tourist/potential mate:
If you guys are into sushi, I would suggest Tri Express at the end of Laurier east (near corner papineau) - Superstar Chef Tri Du(of Treehouse fame) puts together a beautiful tasting menu of unforgettable pieces of edible art in this eclectic little spot furnished by refurbished antiques. Share the 40$ Omakase and split the Sushi Pizza(Salmon, Tuna or Lobster options at the same price - by far the BEST I've ever had) Also, taxes are included in the price, so it's actually a lot more reasonable than at first glance..
For breakfast, I would recommend either Cosmo's Snack Bar(a Montreal greasy-spoon establishment...truly an experience to be had) on sherbrooke west, or if you're into something a little trendier and cleaner, I'd suggest L'Avenue on Mount Royal. For L'Avenue, which is a stone's throw from where you're staying, I'd suggest going relatively early on weekends(before 11) since the lineup can get pretty long. Also, their club sandwich is my benchmark for club sandwiches anywhere.
Lemeac is a fantastic French restaurant on Laurier with a bistro menu special after 10pm (22$ for appetizer and main...just as good-if not better-than L'Express and more reasonably priced past 10)--> my favourite place to bring out-of-towners for a late dinner(but don't let that discourage you from going earlier)! Also has a very delicious fancy breakfast on weekends. Reservations recommended. Show up before midnight. Very, very extensive wine list. Also, they mix a lychee martini strong enough for a man, but delicate enough for a girlfriend ;)
If you're going to splurge, I'd suggest going to Cavalli, but only if I were pressed to splurge. The decor is realyy sexy, food&service damn good, the hottest italian sports cars always parked out front...you know the type. If you're in for the tennis tournament, however, I'd suggest making reservations sooner than later...Stay *away* from the trendy restaurants on the St Laurent strip, but if you must, Primadonna has a damn good seafood linguini.
For street food, I'd have to say Boustan on Crescent for lebanese chicken pitas (the off-the-menu 'creation' will satisfy your drunchies for 5$) any Frites Alors! or La Belle Province(save the one on St Laurent) is a safe bet for very decent poutine, as they only use fresh-cut fries and real cheese curds. As for pizza by the slice, well, save that for a future NYC trip.
Up in little Italy on Dante street, there's a wood-burning pizzeria called pizzeria napolitana. Pretty much the best personal-size pizza in town..they bake the sauce on top of the cheese(go figure). For the price and the tastiness of their pizzas and baked pastas, *and* the fact that it's BYOB, you can't go wrong. Also, I think it's a little closer to the tennis courts than the other places, so it'd be a great way to start/end the afternoon.
Hope it helps; cause now I'm damn starving :p
Enjoy your stay!
i'm sorry to disagree, but I would stay away from l'Avenue. The food is okay, but it is quite expensive for what you get. I mean, it is eggs and bacon..! not as if they were using exceptional ingredients or being creative.
maybe i am just crabby because i do not understand why it is always so busy!
I mean, I'm not gonna argue with that.
The prices have gone up a tad, and the line is really long, but if you go early enough (like I said), and don't mind shelling out the extra 3-4 bucks for breakfast, it's worth it. They use really good ingredients, coffee is excellent, everything is cooked to perfection, and the atmosphere and ambiance is really cool(have you seen those bathrooms??).
What's more is that it's literally down the street from where they're staying, and it's definitely worth poking your head in, at the very least.
I would, however, suggest staying away from Beauty's....Don't even get me started.
p.s. Go and have the club sandwich...It will spoil you forever.
Went to Montreal in August 2006 and truly enjoyed both Globe, at 3455 St. Laurent, and Chez L'epicier (the Grocer) at 311 rue Saint-Paul Est. Both meals were knockouts (even with terrible seasonal allergies while at L'epicier). Completely different vibes at each - Globe is (was?) more trendy and L'epicier was more traditional (although food was very cutting edge). Hope your trip & eating goes well.