Birthday Layover in Montreal on a Saturday
I have a layover in Montreal Trudeau airport arriving at 10:30am and leaving for Europe at 5:30pm in a week and a half. It's the day of my girlfriend's birthday and I was hoping to do a romantic lunch or tourist visit near the airport. We're both foodies, but it sounds like the lunch options for Saturdays are somewhat limited. I've seen some of the layover posts around here but I'm wondering if anyone else would have some more ideas....
If it were me, there's no way I'd chance getting to downtown and back, with construction and all the related traffic headaches, given your time constraints - you won't end up having enough time to enjoy your meal if you venture too far. Plus you need enough time to clear customs and security for European flights - I believe they recommend 3 hours, and the lines, especially this time of year, are brutal...
I would wait until you get to Europe, and treat your GF to a romantic birthday meal a day later instead...
While it might not be outstanding (although I have not tried it, so for all I know it may be quite good), there is a restaurant in the new Marriott that adjoins the airport, which would at least allow you to relax and enjoy a decent meal and a few drinks before your flight, with no time worries.
I had a similar request a few months back - you might want to take a peek at this thread if you haven't already:
I'd really caution you in terms of taking a cab, bus, or car into downtown at the peak of summer on a Saturday. Between construction and the summer festivals, the traffic can be horrendous. If you're a cautious type, you may want to stick around the West Island despite the more limited dining options, to be safe.
Edit: Just a heads-up The Sparrow is on vacation til July 3, plus the wait times can be long if you're not there for the first seating at 10.
excellent point about the traffic.
since as carswell points out the snazzier downtown restos will be closed, and given the birthday situation, maybe a nice ste anne de bellevue spot, with a water-side terrasse? anyone know which one's the best?
had a nice lunch once at that bistro in the old stone building across from the lake in pointe claire village, anyone know the name?
Le Gourmand is what you mean, they are closed for lunch on saturdays.
There's nothing special in Ste Anne de Bellevue, imo... except Chalet Thai has excellent food in that genre. Ordinary setting though.
I would venture downtown, you have a lot of time .
Downtown lunch on a saturday, Vasco de Gama on Peel has good food in a
Chalet Thai Restaurant
96 Rue Sainte-Anne, Sainte-Anne-De-Bellevue, QC H9X1L8, CA
(Moderators, yeah, it does not start foodie, but I will get there to put some background on restaurant selections, so don't move it pretty please!)
It's going to be short on time for lunch and/or tourist visit (skip one or the other). Let's say you actually land at 10:30, you will be out of the airport @ 11:30 (let's be generous); 1 hour to get to where you want to go (there are lots of road-work). You need to get to the airport at least 2 hours before flight; so ... (and forget about the bus, it's cheaper, but probably take longer to go downtown).
suggestions : Quick lunch @ Ferreira (as mak2k suggested), quick lunch @ Lemeac (full menu available @ lunch), You could take your chance for a brunch @ Sparrow or Reservoir (different vibe, but no reservatioin for both places),
or maybe walk up St-Laurent from downtown to Schwarz (not romantic at all) for smoked meat, or maybe Janos (portugese, I think it's open on sat. ); to get the vibe of the "main".
Other will give more ... but it's going to be short on time.
there is the 747 public transit bus that connects Trudeau airport to downtown (3$ per person i think?). Hop on the bus and you'll get in downtown for lunch. There are several nice lunch spots for lunches (Ferriera, decca77 being two that comes to my mind) or you can stop a bit earlier around the concordia area for other lunches. You can search around the forum for more specific suggestions. Just make sure you are aware of the time the bus arrives