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Jul 29, 2011 08:47 AM

Traveling to Montreal with a Fine Dinning Chef

Hi Folks - The BF and I rarely get vacations as working in fine dining doesn't allow for much time off. That being said we managed to book four days and three night in Montreal in August- Thursday to Sunday.

I've booked Au Pied de Cochon for a dinner one night but I still have two others to select and of course breakfast, lunch and any must have snacks.

On our wish list we'd like to go one BYOW and one Greek meal. If this can be combined even better!

We have lots of Asian in Toronto so I think we will skip that while in Montreal but everything else fair game. The more unusual the better - feeding a chef is a unique challenge at times so boring is a no go!

Price points from cheap and cheerful up to $350 for two with wine. We are willing to cab or transit as necessary.

Thank you in advance!

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  1. I'm also a Chef and I really enjoyed Joe Beef . I've heard good things about Brassiere T.
    Garde manager looks good also. i might be planning a trip to Montreal myself soon, and those three are on my list plus Le Bremner, Chuck Hughes new restaurant.

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

    1 Reply
    1. re: bboss

      For a splurge,I'd recommend Club Chasse et Peche.Cheap&cheerful The Main or Schwartz's or Coco Rico for rotisserie chicken.
      For a great brunch or bistro experience check out Lemeac Bistro.

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

    2. If you're willing to spend up to $350 a meal, then definitely Milos for Greek. Not BYOB, but excellent food. Most of the BYOB Greek places seem to be clones of each other, and ordinary at best.

      1. I *think* there's a Chef's Table at Europea, but cannot find a reference to it on the site. Phone them up? Be that as it may, that might be too much like being at work for him.

        1227, rue de la Montagne, Montreal, QC H3G1Z2, CA

        1. (I did not check for summer closures or opening hours modifications)

          For greek and $$$ : Milos (parc ave.) or for a little less $, there is Mythos (parc ave.) with a street side terrasse.

          For BYOB : "Monsieur B", "Le Quartier Général", "O'Thym" ...

          For breakfast : get croissants and other goodies from "Boulangerie Guillaume", or go to Olive&Gourmando ...

          For Lunch, again a lot of options; Lawrence, Le Comptoir, Le Réservoir and in Old-Montreal Olive&Gourmando, Titanic, ...


          1 Reply
          1. re: Maximilien

            Max! We're going in a couple of months....and to all 3 of your recs for BYOBs!!! All three are fantastic and our favs! I think the poster will enjoy as well.

          2. Stay away from Old Montreal!!! For a food adventure spend a day at the Jean Talon Market. Too many good choices for lunch to list but the panninni at Capitale is the best I have encountered in North America and be sure to check out the surrounding butcher shops.
            I have lived all over North America and for this foodie Jean Talon Market is the most exciting place for both great food and the people who share the appreciation of how important food is to a good life. Check out NIno's to see what an excellent green grocer finds. Talk to the Capitaine about eggs several wonderful frommagerries and the the pie place. All North American cities have great restaurants but the excitement of food is brought to a new level at JTM.
            Quincallerie Dante near the market is a place every cook and chef should check out. I have been brought or have brought people to the jean Talon Market for over 60 years it is always exciting and every trip brings new and exciting experiences.

            18 Replies
            1. re: Moedelestrie

              Stay away from Old Montreal? really?
              Ok right, here are few of the places that you would manage to "avoid":
              Club Chasse&Peche (that would be my recommendation for the Thursday lunch at Chateau Ramesay’s nice terrasse - General comment: I would use weekdays’ lunch spots to hit high-end restaurants at way sweeter prices)
              Les 400 Coups (my lunch recommendation for Friday, the only time they open at noon)
              Bremner (not a fan of C. Hughes but, to be fair it’s pretty good and less boisterous then Garde-Manger - BTW since it is still mostly unknown, the reservations come by somewhat easily, especially for a party of two )
              Toqué (alternative to CC&P for Thursday’s lunch)
              These are all restaurants I would (strongly) recommend to visiting foodies…

              Now, to stick to the other OP requirements:
              Without hesitation seconding Milos for the Greek – The reason behind the menu’s missing items is exactly why you wanna go there: They only serve the best fishes available... IMO, BYOW are generally dissatisfying and quickly losing attractiveness in the new wine by the glass era. Therefore, I could only recommend two places: Quartier-General (not strongly, as I cannot say the cuisine is particularly inventive albeit generally well executed) and Madre, an interesting Nuevo Latino place with the following caveat: the few times I have been, they had hits and misses. Others would point to Le Petit Plateau but I have not been in ages… Brunch… I love le Reservoir, but not everybody would agree… Some people told me Le Cartet’s Brunches are nice, never been, but the space is inviting for sure and most probably crowded with scenesters on Sunday mornings …

              Please give us feedback

              Le Cartet
              106 Rue McGill, Montreal, QC H2Y, CA

                1. re: kpaxonite

                  Yes, I totally agree, I was up to add it...

                  1. re: Ched1000

                    DNA booked for Sat. And now I must not eat a thing until we arrive!!!

                    1. re: JennaBean

                      The chef took one look at the photos inside DNA and killed it. Le Quartier Général is now booked instead.

                      Le Quartier
                      1001 Sq Victoria, Montreal, QC H2Z2A8, CA

                      1. re: JennaBean

                        Judging a book by its cover. He's missed an opportunity.

                          1. re: kpaxonite

                            I fully understand. He's just more of a classical kinda fellow over the uber trendy. he didn't think he's be comfortable and then he read some reviews on other sites talking about snotty servive and that was the deal breaker. All it all, I'm sure between Cava, Toque, APD, and Quartier Général we should have some good meals not to mention what we will fill in for breakfasts and lunches!

                            1. re: JennaBean

                              Les 400 coups should definitely be on your list if you're still looking...

                            2. re: kpaxonite

                              FYI: DNA was featured in Travel Channel's bizarre foods episode about Montreal (cockcombs sour candy, tripe lasagne, blood pannacotta).
                              Me personally I was dissappointed with Le Quartier General. Although their food is less typical French bistro and their descriptions mouthwatering, the execution and flavour were lacking. I'd take le P'tit Plateau any day over QG.

                                1. re: kpaxonite

                                  While it's not a BYOB, les 3 Petits Bouchons is without a doubt, my favourite new wine bistro in the city. I went there for the 1st time with my friend last week, and was simply blown away. Service was really friendly, the food speaks for itself, not overly done up, local/organic. And then the perfect wine pairing, of course. Check it out for an unbelievable meal!

                                2. re: estilker

                                  I feel that same way about QG. Looks better on paper than on the plate. It's not bad at all, but I can't figure out how they made that En Route list. Unless that list is just some bull.

                                  1. re: SnackHappy

                                    Remember Garçon! ? Made the en Route list too, though the brigade that got it there quit en masse the day the issue came out. Everyone I knew who went after en Route said "meh"

                                  2. re: estilker

                                    le P'tit Plateau isn't on the list b/c of a small pet peeve of mine - little butter packages in the bread basket. I know I know I'm so silly but I can't help it. We all have our idiosyncrasies and that would be one of mine!

                                    And that video would further convince him not to go. As we have a resto here that does that very thing and does is exceedingly well. Black Hoof if you ever get to Toronto be sure to check it out!

                                    But thank you for your input and time!!! :-)

                                    1. re: JennaBean

                                      I would say that Black Hoof is closer to Le Comptoir than to DNA. Had a very memorable meal there.

                                      Enjoy your trip!

                      2. re: Ched1000

                        As much as I love Old Montreal I suggest that the summertime is not the time to wine and Dine in Old Montreal to many people and I find the restaurants are not at their best especially at lunch time. My personal opinion is that old Montreal is not to be visited between June and Labour day except when I want crowds and a Ben and Jerry's ice cream. I agree lunch at Chateau Ramezay is very special and the restaurants you mention are very good but fine dining means never being rushed. Thanksgiving weekend would be a great time to visit Old Montreal.

                        1. re: Ched1000

                          Toque is booked for Friday lunch. My BF's exe chef booked it for us as he's friend's with these folks so I'm sure we're in for a serious lunch experience!!!