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Best Martini in Montreal?

Alright Montreal Board Readers,
I've done my due diligence and don't think this has been been addressed as its own topic: Who makes the best martini in Montreal? My wife and I are coming up this weekend for a couple of nights and have reservations at two BYO's (P'tit Plateau and Le Quartier Général), but where should we go for a martini before or after?

BTW--Gin, of course.

Looking forward to the suggestions--and possible debates.

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  1. I've had good Martinis at Lawrence and Chien Fumant (they are not actual bars ... so ... )

    Around that area, you could try Le Lab, or for a different vibe altogether, go to "La Distillerie"

    I was there last friday, and it was fun, ok, it's loud and a bit young-ish but the drinks are good and all made fresh; I'm certain you can get them to make you a straight martini.


    1 Reply
    1. re: Maximilien

      +1 for La Distillerie (if you can get a spot), their martini is more than decent, but nothing beats their spruce beer Mojito on a hot night.

    2. The bar Plan B makes a mean martini (among many other fantastic cocktails), has a very cool backyard terrasse and is just a block away from P'tit Plateau.

      And with that... case closed, time for happy hour? ;P

      1. Baldwin Barmacie makes excellent cocktails, and if you go pre-dinner you'll avoid the crush of trendy youths who pack it sardine-style after 10PM.

        Baldwin Barmacie
        115 Avenue Laurier Ouest, Montr, Montreal, QC , CA

        1. We go every year and last year, at suggestion on these boards, we went to Le Lab. Too young a crowd (for us) and I thought the "very young" bartender was going to say: "A mar--what?" So, we just ordered off the chalk board...some interesting, not very strong drink. It was a sort of fun place, but not a martini place, by any means.

          1. [clambers atop soapbox] The tricky point is that the SAQ limits the kinds of gins available in the province and don't get me started on the deplorable selection of vermouths. So don't expect a martini made with say, Boodles and Lillet in town. [gets off soapbox]

            Outside of martinis, there are some interesting cocktails happening at Dominion Square Tavern and Griffintown Café.

            2 Replies
            1. re: TheSnowpea

              bravo, Snowpea, you tell 'em, girl. Why do you suppose they do that, limit the yummy stuff?
              for the OP, maybe some of your chic-er places in Old Montreal--hotel bars, 17th c. taverns by the water, etc.

              1. re: bakersdelight

                "Why do you suppose they do that, limit the yummy stuff?"

                Because traditionally, Quebecois are/were not into hard alcool and/or mix drinks.

                but it's changing slowly.


            2. :-) the thing is, Montreal's not really a cocktail town, more a wine and beer kind of place. Cocktail culture has yet to make a true inroads, esp. in restaurants.

              1. The bartenders at Salle a Manger made us excellent drinks and that is pretty close to le P'tit Plateau. I liked the drinks at Chien Fumant also. Both those places made excellent no alcohol drinks for my pregnant wife (not just a bloody mary hold the vodka) and nice old school cocktails for me. I bet they would make the martini you're looking for.

                1. I haven’t had a great martini in Montreal since the Noilly Prat recipe was changed, but if Chien Fumant makes a good one, it’s worth noting that Quartier Generale is right across the street.

                  1. The Beaver Club in the Queen Elizabeth hotel. They've been my go to martini for the past 40 years. Absolutely and completely tradition bound.