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Jan 13, 2009 11:27 AM

Love is in the air

My boyfriend of six years and I are planning our first trip to Montreal Feb. 13 to 15th. February 14th is his birthday and I have a funny feeling will be a big night for other reasons as well (an engagement perhaps???) Can anyone suggest a cozy and romantic restaurant for dinner that night? No particular cuisine in mind, we like almost everything! Any suggestions for after dinner drinks or a special dessert? Thanks!

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  1. GOod luck. Valentine's day is habitually a money making night for restaurants. Set menus at horrific prices with less than stellar food.

    1 Reply
    1. re: maisonbistro

      i agree. i am visiting that same weekend and am trying to find a place that is NOT doing a v-day big deal. lebanese, here i come!

    2. Bon Appétit, where are you staying? That might be some help for giving advice. Perhaps Old Montréal or the Plateau? I think it is very romantic to be able to go to a nice little place and stroll back to where you are staying.

      It would also help if you give some indications of your food preferences. Are you real meat eaters, or not so much? Spicy or mellow?

      This is sweet, so I'm sure a lot of people really would like to help you optimise your visit.

      2 Replies
      1. re: lagatta

        We are staying at the Fairmont Queen it as nice as the website promises? We are most definitely meat-eaters. I love spicy food, my boyfriend not so much...
        Awesome food is definitely a must but a great atmosphere is really important to me as well.

        1. re: bonappetit14

          The Queen Elizabeth is not that nice... it's old and not really renovated (although I heard they will renovate soon); if I were you, I would go to Le Germain: - it's a Boutique Hotel, very nice and romantic, about 5 minutes walk from the Queen Elizabeth actually. And they have great breakfasts!

      2. Wow, that's exciting! We will try our best to help.
        What's your budget for this special birthday night?

        10 Replies
        1. re: anachemia

          It is most important that we absolutely love the food! We don't get away that often so I'm not going to stress about the money...anything goes!

          1. re: bonappetit14

            If that is the case you might try L'Express or Da Emma. I think they do not do a V-day menu and stick to their traditional and exceptional fare. L'Express is a traditional French Bistro (the best and most consistent in Mtl in my opinion :) Da Emma is a wonderful Italian (but not like you know it :) it is aaaawesome. For both places you are looking at about 200-300$ for two people plus tip.

            1. re: oana

              Wow, I really would not call l'Express romantic.

              1. re: mainsqueeze

                It always has been for me :). I guess it also depends on the company ... When I go there with my husband and we sit at the bar or a table at the back and we eat for 4 hours and share an aperitif, a beautiful bottle of wine, digestif and a lovely espresso it seems quite romantic to me. Maybe it's all the booze :)

                On a side note it is so funny to see your symbol because I am staring at a Little Sheep business card as we "speak" and am craving that broth! :).

                1. re: oana

                  Mmmm, must be contagious, I am now craving Little Sheep too...thanks a lot! ;-)

                  Sorry, LS probably does not fit the bill for a romantic dinner...unless you don't mind reeking of garlic for days.

                  1. re: oana

                    I just find the logo too cute. I almost feel guilty about eating that sweet little sheep.

                    As for L'Express it's super bustling and loud and the tables are squished together and the service can be rushed. It's the last place I'd think of for a romantic tete-a-tete.

                    For atmosphere, I would choose Club Chasse & Peche, which the OP should look into. Oysters, suckling pig risotto, salted caramel tarte, all in a gorgeous atmosphere. Sounds perfect to me.

                    1. re: mainsqueeze

                      I never found CC&P romantic. Quite the contrary. While sitting in my very comfortable chair I could just spot my wife sitting waaaay the other side of table in her comfy chair. With all the noise from other tables I certainly wasn't going to whisper sweet nothings in her ear--shout them maybe.

                      The food, however, has always been outstanding.

                      1. re: SoupSon

                        This really made me laugh :) what a visual :) thank you SoupSon :).
                        We are always on the lookout for outstanding food so this will be something to look forward to.

                        1. re: SoupSon

                          Oh, we have only been to CC&P once and we lucked out with a corner booth so I guess that added to the coziness. And the staff was GREAT.

                        2. re: mainsqueeze

                          Not me :). Yum yum :)

                          Yes you are right the tables are somewhat close together :) and about the service I never noticed it was rushed. I guess it is because everywhere we go we specifically ask to be served slowly. I have not been to Club Chasse & Peche I can look forward to it now :).

              2. I have a really good place in mind for you which is in a hotel too. This is the restaurant Koko in Hôtel Opus on Sherbrooke corner St-Laurent bld. It is pretty expensive but the atmosphere, the service and the food are excellent. Later in the evening, the restaurant is transformed in a supper-club. I would suggest you to go see the site yourself so that you feel the ambiance a bit more: or the site for the hotel (around $300 per night for a room ''king privilege''. I went there with my boyfriend for our first anniversary and the hotel, as well as the food, were perfect. I would qualify the restaurant as theatrical, romantic, upbeat. Ask for an intimate table when you reserve at the restaurant. That's my suggestion!

                2 Replies
                1. re: Nath_montreal

                  Well, this is not a site on hotels, but Opus is certainly a more interesting foodie location, as you can walk (or take the bus or a short, cheap taxi ride) to many restaurants often mentioned in this site, and are just northeast of the downtown area and due north of Chinatown.

                  There are some nice small hotels in the Plateau area now that would probably be less expensive.

                  How about tapas at Pinxto?

                  L'Express is romantic if romantic means a crowded Parisian bistro for you, not the "slow" kind of romantic. Depends on what appeals.

                2. I would suggest Lemeac or Laloux for your special night!

                  With a quick google, you can find the menus for both. They're both excellent. Laloux has better food in my opinion, and fantastic service. It's really a lovely experience. However, Lemeac may have a little more of the atmosphere you're looking for. The light is lower, things are a little more intimate, and it's a great place for an intimate dinner.

                  You can find Laloux in the Plateau, along Pins near St. Denis. Lemeac is further north, in Outremont - a lovely neighbourhood for a walk though quite far from where you're staying -- so if you don't mind a cab...

                  Hope this helps! What an exciting trip.

                  3 Replies
                    1. re: bonappetit14

                      You can also try Pop - next door to Laloux. The food is great, the wine amazing. The ambiance isn't exactly Romantic although it is very nice. I also second Lemeac - even though it's a bustling place, you can't go wrong with the food. The Pain Perdu for dessert is a must, or the grilled pineapple also. YUM

                      1. re: bonappetit14

                        Of all the suggestions I've seen in the thread, I think Laloux would be the best fit, in terms of good food and romance. L'Express is way too bustling to be considered romantic, and CC&P is hit or miss - if they put you in the middle of the main room, you probably won't hear your BF proposing ! Another possibility, and closer to your hotel, is Cafe Ferreira - but if so you should ask for a table upstairs, as the downstairs room can be quite noisy. And you have to love seafood. If you're looking for more cozy and intimate, another potential choice, more off the beaten track, would be Le Petit Toscan. It is a very small place, with refined italian food, and a lot more conducive to whispering sweet nothings than the other suggestions. The only caveat is that from my experience, the quality of the food depends on whether the owner-chef is cooking that night (excellent), or if it's his subordinate manning the stoves (humdrum).