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Montreal May 2011 Visit...(need recommendations)

New York City foodie here and visiting Montreal in May 2011. Can you please give me a few of the "must-visit" restaurants for a foodie. Looking for delicious food in a fun and unpretentious setting that will give me a good sense of the Montreal dining scene. Some places I've been reading about are:

APDC
Garde Manger
Joe Beef
Le Local
Le Clube Chasse et Peche
DNA

Thanks!

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Joe Beef
2491 Rue Notre-Dame W, Montreal, QC H3J1N6, CA

Le Local
740 rue William, Montréal, QC H3C 1P1, CA

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  1. All good, but the first 4 are quite similar (IMO, and other will disagree) in style and cooking spirit and they are all very Montreal, but "Le Local" is the least good of the lot.

    Le Club is more high-end cuisine and more "formal".
    DNA is more funky.

    Other good suggestions :
    Le Comptoir
    Le Filet (little sister of Le Club).
    3 Petits Bouchons
    Le Chien Fumant
    5eme peché.

    Max.

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    Le Chien Fumant
    4710 Rue de Lanaudière, Montreal, QC H2J 3P7, CA

    1. le Clube Chasse et Peche is the best of your choices.
      Anton

      1 Reply
      1. re: antonfercher

        +1 on CCeP and their new place,Le Filet,looks very interesting. You might have a hard time getting reservations at Garde Manger now that Chuck is an Iron Chef champion.

      2. We just got back from Montreal yesterday and we visited PDC and Garde Manger (both we had to reserve months in advance) but if you can get in, I would recommend both. PDC is definitly not something you want to do every few weeks, once a year is enough but they serve some interesting food (we had squid ink poutine, fois gras poutine, duck in a can, trotters and the duck carpaccio). We sat at the bar which again I highly recommend if you want to see whats going on in the kitchen. The service was excellent.
        Garde Manger was amazing, and amazingly loud. I'm not one for the club scene but it was a great atmosphere and they rocked some good tunes. Food was pretty good, more seafood based so lighter than PDC. Great service and a line up out the door for seats, so make sure to reserve. It's not a place where you can hold a conversation, but if you just want to chill, sit at the bar and just enjoy. We had the cajun crab, lamb, lobster poutine and the brownie. We did find the prices a bit much, but we would return for the atmosphere.

        1. I am not a local montrealite, but coming in from Toronto, I did read many reviews and the list below is what we decided on. My boyfriend and I just got back from a 4day trip to Montreal.
          The list we went to:

          Kitchen Galerie (been there twice now, and loved both times: my bf calls it good food and entertainment: the chefs are hilarious and friendly and one of them even sings while cooking in the open kitchen. The menu changes everyday depending on what's in season and what's fresh in the market. )

          Le Comptoir Charcuterie et Vin (went for lunch, cute little place, food was good)

          Bocata (i would not recommend this place. it's apparently a "happening new" tapas place but found that it was not worth the money we dropped at this place)

          Quartier General (BYOW place; 40$ per person for table d'hote, which is quite good since you bring your own bottle of wine. In the middle of a residential block, but the resto itself is nice with large windows. They have 2 seating: one at 6:30 and the other at 9:30. If you like lingering more than 3 hrs, i would go for the 9:30 seating. To be truthful I liked my soup and appetizer but did not like the main dish, but boyfriend like all the course, and he is a picky eater...so)

          If you are planning on visiting Jean Talon market, there is a bakery cafe called Premier Moisson and that place had really yummy pastry and sands. for lunch or quick bite. I would recommend the chocolate eclaire with a cafe au lait...I ate 5 within the span of 4 days...(yes, the guy probably thought I was prego with an eclaire craving)

          I would go to Holder in Old Montreal rather than Garde Manger. It seems Garde Manger is a hit or miss, even for the locals living in Montreal. Although Holder is not by a famous Food Network chef, it at least has consistent reviews. We have been to both Holder and Garde Manger before and (based on our little tiny experience), we had a better time at Holder.

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          Kitchen Galerie
          60 Rue Jean-Talon E, Montreal, QC H2R1S5, CA

          1 Reply
          1. re: newbie_gourmand

            Any further information on Bacata in Old Montreal recently reviewed (in French) in Voir?

            http://www.voir.ca/publishing/article...

          2. Thanks to everyone for the helpful advice. I've booked the following and would love to hear your thoughts and comments:

            Thursday: Holder
            Friday: Le Clube Chasse et Peche
            Saturday: APDC

            16 Replies
            1. re: brian211

              I have eaten several times at the restaurants from your original post except for Le Local (which I didn't find that great). CCP and APDC are excellent choices. Garde Mander is loud, but service is good and so is the food (some items have been on the miss side on some visits). Not to sure about your choice for Holder. I would have gone with Joe Beef or DNA. The last meal we had at DNA was awesome, from the service to the creativity of the dishes. Max also but some very interesting choices. Chien Fumant is a very small place on the Plateau that would be a change in scenery from the other restaurants you selected. Since poutine has become popular in NYC recently, you may want to try one in Montreal. La Banquise is the go to place. If you have the time, you could compare Schwartz's to NYC deli and either st. viateur or fairmount bagels. Let us know if you try those. Have fun trip.

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              Joe Beef
              2491 Rue Notre-Dame W, Montreal, QC H3J1N6, CA

              Le Local
              740 rue William, Montréal, QC H3C 1P1, CA

              1. re: stephlovestoeat

                Thanks for the feedback. Yeah, I'm not totally locked into Holder and open to change. I may swap into DNA since that is high on my list.

                1. re: brian211

                  Sounds like solid choices Brian211. If you're looking for a quick yummy lunch, check out Coco Rico for rotisserie chicken,Its one place I never miss when I'm in Montreal.

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                  Coco Rico
                  3907 Boul Saint-Laurent, Montreal, QC H2W1X9, CA

                  1. re: petek

                    I prefer Romados for a chicken lunch. I think its 10 times as delicious and pretty close by Coco Rico's. But that's just my opinion.

                    1. re: wizardoflittlearmenia

                      I'll have to give Romados a try next time I'm in town. When you say"pretty close by Coco Rico's" how close?

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                      Coco Rico
                      3907 Boul Saint-Laurent, Montreal, QC H2W1X9, CA

                        1. re: Maximilien

                          Thanks Maximilien! I've walked by that place many times.Can't believe I've never checked it out.

                          1. re: petek

                            Definitely listen to wizard and go to Romados, it's beyond 10 times better than Coco Rico.

                            -----
                            Coco Rico
                            3907 Boul Saint-Laurent, Montreal, QC H2W1X9, CA

                        2. re: petek

                          romado's is a great deal and their tarts are amazing however for 1.50 more i really prefer coco ricos because tarts not as good but give you wayyyy more chicken and i find the chicken is hotter/juicier. also like the baked potatoes cooked in chicken drippings over regular ole romado's french fries

                          1. re: billybauer17

                            It's rotisserie chicken at Coco Rico, and grilled chicken at Romados. As a result Coco Rico's is juicier - but it's a completely different style and different taste.

                            -----
                            Coco Rico
                            3907 Boul Saint-Laurent, Montreal, QC H2W1X9, CA

                            1. re: cherylmtl

                              I was just going to ask if there was a difference in the cooking style between the two.

                              Cheers :)

                              1. re: petek

                                Is Coco Rico on the same block as Schwartz? When I was in Montreal a few years ago, we had lunch at Schwartz, then walked down to some chicken place for chicken, roast pork and potatoes. The food was delicious but do not remember the name.
                                After that, I think we walked further down to Potato Patat (?) for some poutine. Not sure if we hit the chicken place or poutine first but I remember all 3 were very close together.

                                -----
                                Coco Rico
                                3907 Boul Saint-Laurent, Montreal, QC H2W1X9, CA

                                1. re: caitlink

                                  Yes ,Coco Rico is on the same block as Schwartz,just further up the hill(east?).

                                    1. re: kpzoo

                                      Apologies, north is the correct answer.

                2. re: brian211

                  Holder is currently my favourite restaurant at the moment.
                  They have the best beef tartar and lobster ravioli.
                  http://www.restaurantholder.com/index...

                  Garde Manger has great lobster poutine and halibut that last time I went.

                  Le Meac on laurier has great beef tartar as well however I prefer the one at Holder. The scallops here are amazing!
                  http://www.restaurantlemeac.com/en-CA...

                3. Check out Tuck Shop. It's a great new Montreal restaurant,

                  1. Thanks again everyone for all of the advice.

                    One question, what is the dress code at Le Clube Chasse et Peche?

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: brian211

                      No there is no dress code. But most of the customers there are elegant dressed.

                      1. re: antonfercher

                        I can't think of a restaurant in Montreal that has a dress code, though you might feel most comfortable at CCP wearing at least a dress shirt and non-denim trousers. One would not feel overdressed in a suit, though I personally don't think it's necessary.