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Middle Eastern or North African Restaurant Recommendations?

We will be in Montreal late this week and are looking for a good Middle Eastern or North African restaurant recommendation...all of which are sadly lacking in Vancouver. What would you recommend?

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  1. Le Petit Alep (casual) and Alep (fancier) near the Jean Talon Market for northern Syrian/Armenian.

    Kaza Maza (casual) and Damas (fancier) in Mile End for southern Syrian.

    Daou, also near the Jean Talon Market (casualish) or in the St-Laurent borough (a bit fancier), for traditional Lebanese.

    Abu Elias (not a restaurant, more a butcher shop and take-out counter with a few seats) for first-rate grilled sandwiches and a few more specialties.

    Haven't been particularly knocked out by the couscouseries and Moroccan/Algerian restos I've been to in the last couple of years, so I'll leave those to someone else to recommend.

    Don't miss the baklava: Amal Bohsali and Mahrouse are tops.

    All the above have been discussed extensively on the board. Plug the names into the search engine for links to the posts.

    3 Replies
    1. re: carswell

      Are you able to travel to places other then downtown? If not then Abu Elias and Mahrouse might be too out-of-the-way :(

      Adding:
      -La Maison du Kebab on atwater. Persian food, delicious, though the decor is unpretentious. Bring cash.
      -Magdala on bishop for ethipian cuisine. Very good and fun, better then Le Nil Bleu in my opinion.
      -Au coin Berbere: Moroccain couscous. Delicious for a BYOB, service is friendly but slow, don't be in a hurry.

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      Nil Bleu Restaurant
      3706 Rue Saint-Denis, Montreal, QC H2X3L7, CA

      1. re: SourberryLily

        Magdala seems to maintain a very odd schedule. I've passed and seen them closed on Friday/Saturday nights, and open the next week, no explanation given. I agree that the food is much better than Nil Bleu, but best to call well in advance to confirm.

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        Nil Bleu Restaurant
        3706 Rue Saint-Denis, Montreal, QC H2X3L7, CA

        1. re: davekry

          Good point! The service is friendly and good, but i've also seen them closed for no apparent reason. Too bad.

    2. Couple comes to mind :

      Kaza Maza or Damas for syrian(-ish) cuisine, the former I think is a bit more laid-back than the later.

      Le Petit Alep and Alep for syrian(-ish) cuisine, the former I think is a bit more laid-back than the later.

      for north-african or lebanese cuisine, I will let others answer.

      1. I love Kaza Maza! There is also Rumi, which is also very good, on the corner of Hutchison and Fairmount or its more casual location on St-Laurent. Why is it that all of these places have two locations, one fancy and one not??

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        Rumi
        5198 Rue Hutchison, Outremont, QC H2V4A9, CA

        1. La couscoussiere d'Ali Baba is a fun place for an evening complete with entertainment (see website) and the food was very good on my single visit there.
          http://www.couscoussiere.ca/

          1. love Zawedeh, though the location isn't great: corner Peel and Sherbrooke, ground floor of the Best Western. There's also El Morocco, 3450 Drummond, for traditional Moroccan-Jewish: spicy and yummy last time I checked.

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            El Morocco Restaurant
            3450 Drummond, Montreal, QC H3G1Y2, CA