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Delibee's

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EaterBob Feb 16, 2012 03:07 PM

Way off the beaten track (unless you live in or near Valois Bay). But I had business out there today, and was pleasantly surprised. Very Traditional Montreal Deli style combined with rustic wooden furniture and blues playing on the stereo. Which does make for a weird combination, unless you've been to Smoked Meat Pete's... But this place is much smaller, like a third the size. And there's no live bands.

I scanned the menu which seems to have all the standard Montreal deli items, but it seemed that there were a couple of interlopers as well. But I didn't pay too much attention as I figured that for my first visit (and perhaps my last) I should try their Smoked Meat. I ordered the platter. $9.95+tax. You order at the counter, and the food is delivered to the table. They don't have a liquor license.

The platter comes with four slices of rye bread, fries, a dill pickle wedge, and a ramekin piled high with cole slaw. I would guess that everything is made in house except for perhaps the pickle. I didn't ask anyone, but since the fries were very irregularly shaped I can't believe that they would have been from the company that pre-peels potatoes and delivers all over town. But then again, without asking, one never knows. They were more of a British chip-style and extremely tender and soft inside. Not too crispy, but just crispy enough. Once they cooled down they weren't half as appealing.

The smoked meat itself was juicy and tender. Much more similar in style to The Main (as should be expected since Philip Varvaro is the son of Peter Varvaro Sr.) than Schwartz's. The spicing is more discrete allowing for the flavor of the meat to come through. It was just the right shade of pink, although since I ordered mine medium, the color of the fat seemed a touch flat to me. Normally (and purely for visual reasons) I like my fat all bright, shiny and sparkly - kind of like what I would imagine a coconut Jell-O shot with an LED inside to look like. This also might have been due to the fact that we were sitting by the window and it was cloudy today. The cole slaw was crunchy, tangy and not too sour.

I was told (without asking) that all the Smoked Meat is made on the premises, and it definitely tasted like it. My platter made one sandwich the size of the special and a second sandwich slightly smaller. I definitely will return and pay more attention to the menu and the non-standard items, although I'll be hard pressed to try them when the smoked meat is this good.

I don't know what their opening hours are, but I can't imagine given their location and lack of a liquor license that they are opened late. Pretty much a lunch place. A good lunch place if you're ever in the neighborhood.

And lastly without even looking I can tell you flat out, they don't have a website. (Ooops, I looked, and I was 100% wrong)
http://www.delibee.com/

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  1. SnackHappy RE: EaterBob Feb 16, 2012 04:11 PM

    Wow, great find, EaterBob! Thanks for the report. This one's going on the "must-try" list.

    1. Haggisboy RE: EaterBob Feb 16, 2012 05:33 PM

      There's a story, and a bit of a mysterious one at that, behind Delibee and Smoke Meat Pete. Both, I believe, are owned by members of the same family (the Varvaro's), and, if my memory hasn't gone wonky, Delibee's used to be named Smoke Meat Pete before Pete moved out to Ile Perrot. The Delibee website makes no mention of Smoke Meat Pete, which is strange considering the family connection and that geographically, both are so distant from each other as to not compete for the same market share. I'm wondering if there was a family feud or something.

      1. porker RE: EaterBob Feb 16, 2012 05:46 PM

        Thanks for the info! I Might have to take a dedicated trip to the Green Hornet dive bar on Lakeshore, then stop in at Delibees.

        3 Replies
        1. re: porker
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          EaterBob RE: porker Feb 17, 2012 05:02 AM

          The Mayfair is right next door. Although after my visit, I started contemplating making a route of sketchy West Island taverns/bars. I have a friend from out of town who enjoys them in an anthropological way. Since the fire Cunningham's has cleaned up its act. And it's a pity that Clyde's is no more.

          1. re: porker
            Haggisboy RE: porker Feb 18, 2012 05:48 AM

            - "Thanks for the info! I Might have to take a dedicated trip to the Green Hornet dive bar on Lakeshore, then stop in at Delibees." -

            Just so you know, each are on different sides of the 20. I only say this because I don't want to hear a report on the radio that there are ham hocks and pigs jowels spilled all over Sources or Donegani because some crazed, drunken, pork-laden chowhounder got t-boned trying to drive from the Green Hornet to Delibee's.

            1. re: Haggisboy
              porker RE: Haggisboy Feb 18, 2012 12:09 PM

              Eloquent.
              Likey {;-/)

          2. b
            BarackHObama RE: EaterBob Feb 16, 2012 06:21 PM

            if your review is to be trusted then they have made great strides over the last decade. growing up in the west island, i went to deli bee's numerous times and found it worse than chenoy's. i was often stoned and that didn't even help ;)

            4 Replies
            1. re: BarackHObama
              porker RE: BarackHObama Feb 16, 2012 06:37 PM

              Always a bright note.

              1. re: porker
                f
                fredmir RE: porker Feb 16, 2012 07:59 PM

                There was a family feud. Pete told me himself, it was very late at his resturant, before closing when told me this. I didn`t ask what it was about

              2. re: BarackHObama
                JedZ RE: BarackHObama Feb 17, 2012 07:47 AM

                I eat regularly at DeliBee (I live in Valois). Virtually everything on the menu is homemade. (The potato salad is awesome). It's a totally family run business - when they go on vacation - it closes.

                The smoked meat is FAR superior to Chenoy's - these days there's no comparison. I too frequented Chenoy's after nights at The Maples Inn. Often wondered how I could eat so much at 3:00 am!?

                While it's true there is no liquor license, you can eat DeliBee food next door at the Mayfair Tavern - Phil owns both establishments and there has always been a pass-thru for food.

                1. re: JedZ
                  porker RE: JedZ Feb 17, 2012 08:08 AM

                  I just thought Green "Hornet".......Deli"Bee",
                  but hey Mayfair sounds good too.

              3. porker RE: EaterBob Mar 10, 2012 07:39 AM

                So the mother-in-law gets it in her head she needs a new credenza and we plan to hit IKEA on Sunday. We go to IKEA (2 boxes in trunk/backseat) and plan to continue on the 40 to Sources, Donegani, and Delibees for lunch.
                Mrs. Porker asks if we should call ahead. "Naw" I say.
                Meanwhile, shes fiddling with the new iPhone and is reading Delibee's menu online. It *is* a deli and everything is sounding good; soup, latkes, chopped liver. The deep fried mushrooms put a smile on my m-i-law's face; besides obscure furniture, she sure loves battered mushrooms.
                Theres a few cars parked out front, but something seems amiss - the lights, the total lack of people in the joint...the closed sign on the door...
                DUH.
                Closed Sunday.
                Refusing defeat, I get out and look into the Mayfair. Its my kind of place: 1950s man-tavern. Even Mrs. Porker would like this place (she accompanies me to Capri). My mother-in-law...not so much.
                Sullen, we leave.
                Ate at the Manoir, no mushrooms, but the old lady was happy with fish&chips. Cheap wine and beer dulled the disappointment.
                Maybe next time!

                1. m
                  maj54us RE: EaterBob Mar 20, 2012 08:45 PM

                  Had lunch at Delibee's and was very satisfied with my Smoked Meat Sandwich. This is an above par sandwich. It was juicy, tender but lacked a little flavor. Not much but a little more spices effects would make it an amazing Sandwich. Nonetheless it was a great experience.

                  To bad they are in a weird spot that isn't easy to see if your just wondering around. The lady at the counter told me that we can go to the bar next door and they serve their food through an opening in the wall if we want to have a beer with our meal. I didn't ask if it would be more expensive to eat next door. They should be on St-Jean Blvd or Des Sources.

                  Since it's family related to Main, I will mention that their coleslaw is nothing near the taste of
                  MAIN's coleslaw. Delibee is on the sweet side with no garlic flavors.

                  Their smoked meat also has nothing to do with the Main. Thing with the main is that they apparently don't make their own smoked meat anymore. Asked the girl at Delibee if they make their own smoked meat she said yes. Can anyone confirm this with certitude?

                  Their marinated pickles seemed home made didn't ask.

                  Not a fan of the kind of fries they serve but they were well cooked just don't like the texture.

                  10 Replies
                  1. re: maj54us
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                    maj54us RE: maj54us Mar 20, 2012 08:53 PM

                    This is the right address to find on the map

                    24 Av de la Baie de Valois, Pointe-Claire, QC H9R 4B3
                    (514) 693-1163

                    -----
                    DELIBEE'S (smoked meat restaurant)
                    24 Avenue de la Baie de Valois, Pointe-Claire, QC H9R 2T9, CA

                    1. re: maj54us
                      porker RE: maj54us Mar 21, 2012 03:26 AM

                      I finally made it there Saturday.

                      I had wanted to to sample a greater range of their menu, but was limited to the smoked meat sandwich and coleslaw.

                      Their smoked meat is certainly unique. Not Schwartz, not Smoke Meat Pete, and not The Main. The first thing that smacks you upside the head is the smokiness. When I make my own MSM, the meat is VERY smoky when coming out of the smoker. It becomes a tad muted the next day after steaming. Delibees tastes closer to the smoker than the steamer.

                      I also saw the brisket and it *looked* homemade; somewhat irregular shape, and inconsistent coloring.

                      The texture is also different - not crumbly like Schwartz, not overly cured-red, not dry, but moist through and through.

                      I didn't ask, but the taste, the look, and the texture tells me its done in-house. Certitude: 97%.

                      Some officionados my balk that the meat is cut on a slicer. This doesn't matter to me.

                      The coleslaw, i'm not sure. Its tasty, a good accompaniment, but it seems not homemade. This doesn't really matter to me either.

                      Their rye bread is fantastic.

                      We didn't try the fries, but they looked great.

                      Picked up a rye and a coupla lbs of smoked meat to-go on the way out.

                      You're right that their location isn't the greatest, but I'm sure they have a dedicated following - those in the know.

                      Mrs Porker and I are looking forward to returning. Perhaps sit in the Mayfair next door and order Tapas style...(they have calamari, latkas, pierogies, wings, karnatzel)

                      1. re: porker
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                        maj54us RE: porker Mar 21, 2012 07:34 AM

                        @Porker: My smoked meat was cut by hand. Do they also cut the meat with a slicer?

                        1. re: maj54us
                          porker RE: maj54us Mar 21, 2012 05:06 PM

                          We were sitting at a table and not able to see the kitchen prepare our sandwiches, so can't vouch if they were cut by hand or not. I'm guessing not as all slices were *very* thin and all uniform (or the guy is an uber expert cutter!).
                          When ordering the 2lbs of smoked meat to go, they asked if I wanted it warm or cold. I chose cold and the guy sliced it on a machine.

                          1. re: porker
                            m
                            maj54us RE: porker Mar 21, 2012 05:34 PM

                            Okay thanks good to know. Did you find a difference in the machine sliced smoked meat? Was it against the grain or mixed kind if cuts?

                            1. re: maj54us
                              porker RE: maj54us Mar 27, 2012 08:20 AM

                              Perhaps I should have been more observant during my visit, but I ddn't poke around and investigate all nuances.
                              The sliced meat and the sandwich meat were from two different briskets, but I ordered each "medium". The machine-sliced to-go meat was *much* fattier (a bit too fatty to eat just like that, but good when warmed) and all cut across the grain. The sandwich meat was leaner in comparison, but never dry. It looked across the grain, but I'm not 100% (I ate it without taking it apart).

                              I don't know if the to-go meat was fattier on purpose (getting rid of the truly fat section) or it was just coincidense to be cut from this area of the brisket. I'm by no means a fatophobe, but the to-go meat was disappointing until it was warmed. This seemed unlikely for the sandwich meat (which I'd enjoy hot, warm, cold, or frozen).

                              1. re: porker
                                m
                                maj54us RE: porker Mar 27, 2012 11:22 AM

                                Smoked meat no matter who sells it is the most disgusting thing to eat cold the next day. I tried using the micro wave, and the oven to give it life but the best thing to have the restaurant experience I use a pot filled with a bit of water then put a colander on top to steam it. Then I'm a happy camper ; ) lol

                                1. re: maj54us
                                  porker RE: maj54us Mar 27, 2012 12:56 PM

                                  I make a cup outta tin foil, put the smoked meat in, add a coupla tablespoons of water, and "float" in a pot of boiling water. I use a colander as well, but to warm some kimmel rye, covered. The meat steams/boils. I use the "juice" to wet the bread further, add mustard and the meat.

                            2. re: porker
                              b
                              BLM RE: porker Mar 22, 2012 11:30 AM

                              If you get it cold, it's usually(if not always) cut by machine(even at Schwartz's). Last time I was at Delibee's they told me they make their own smoked meat. Originally this was Smoked Meat Pete's second location until they parted ways(I've even been there when they were still called Smoked Meat Pete).

                              1. re: porker
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                                Zalbar RE: porker Sep 24, 2013 07:50 AM

                                They slice hot by hand (I've stood at the cash while they made my sandwich to go), and cold by machine.

                        2. j
                          JerkPork RE: EaterBob Sep 3, 2013 01:05 PM

                          I recently posted on one of the other smoke meat threads about my disappointing Schwartz sandwich. Thankfully my work is not too far away from Delibees so I'm able to visit for lunch every now and then. I've introduced quite a few people to it and they absolutely love it, Delibees IMO opinion is definitely the best in town right now. Good thing it's off the beaten path!!

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: JerkPork
                            m
                            maj54us RE: JerkPork Sep 4, 2013 01:18 AM

                            I tried Delibees and was happy with my sandwich. but Main is doing very well with a 1000 batting average for my last visits in 2013. Very moist medium fat sandwiches. Never order lean smoked meat sandwich.

                            Schwartz in my opinion is a victim of it's popularity and cannot prepare enough properly aged briskets. I still believe that something has drastically change with their meat. Taste and texture is definitely not the same.

                            1. re: maj54us
                              j
                              JerkPork RE: maj54us Sep 4, 2013 06:03 AM

                              Something is definitely wrong at Schwartz and I think we're letting them off the hook by saying that they have become too popular and they can't keep up. It's not like they were exactly dead before new ownership took over. I don't go often enough to have a good sampling but based on some other reviews in here it seems something is amiss, my sandwich last week was sub par. I've been to Schwartz in years past during The Main street sale and other busy times and always had a perfect sandwich, there must be more to the story.

                              I'll put The Main on my list, it's been years since I've been and it seems that the Varvarro (sp) family knows how to smoke a good piece of meat.

                              Lean? What the heck is that? :-)

                          2. y
                            ylsf RE: EaterBob Sep 4, 2013 07:13 AM

                            I stopped by this place on Saturday on my way into Montreal based on a rec in another thread. I had a good sandwich and it definitely hit the spot for a smoked meat craving. Staff was friendly, etc.

                            I ended up making a wrong turn off the ramp (gps wasn't clear) and that caused me to have to do a huge loop to get around back to this place. Note for other tourists there is plenty of parking in the back so you don't need to park on the street.

                            Is this a mainly English suburb of Montreal? I noticed the stop signs said "Stop" and that they staff greeted me in English right away and spoke more fluently (at least the girl who took my order).

                            Someone commented about no live music but I did notice a guy who had an electric guitar. I think he maybe works there as I saw him in the back later. Looked like maybe he was just practising during slow times??

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: ylsf
                              e
                              EaterBob RE: ylsf Sep 4, 2013 07:35 AM

                              Note

                              1. re: ylsf
                                porker RE: ylsf Sep 4, 2013 08:09 AM

                                I haven't been to Delibee's enough to build up a relationship with the people, so can't provide a comprehensive answer, however...
                                I've heard customers call the owner Phil, so assume its Philip Varvaro as EaterBob mentions. I've been here on two occasions when Phil would divide his time between the kitchen and an electric bass (it wasn't a 6 string guitar) in the dining room. He didn't seem to be practising, just playing around.
                                So I think your guy was the owner Philip (or call him Phil).

                                Yes, several burroughs, including Point-Claire, on the west island are mainly English.

                                As for Schwartz/The Main/Delibees, my feelings are:

                                I go to Schwartz maybe 2-3 times per year for mostly nostalgic reasons - sitting at the counter eating a sandwich (I agree, not as good as in the past, or perhaps more accurately, lack of consistency?).

                                I go to The Main (relatively new convert) for their menu variety AND smoked meat (plus wine....). Smoked meat generally always good.

                                I go to Delibees for a true artisinal product (their smoked meat), their mom&pop style, and varied menu. I like that its out of the way for me, making it a treat.

                                Now I gotta try Briskets - Mrs. Porker can order a smoked meat and I'll get a pork hock!

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