Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Quebec (inc. Montreal) >
Aug 23, 2012 08:15 PM


We are visiting Montreal for the first time from San Francisco for 3 nights beginning on Sept. 30th. What are the most popular restaurants now? We want to have top food and decor but no pre-fixe menus. Would love to hear from Canadian Chowhounders to learn about what we can't miss for our first visit.

Thanks for your help!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. The original comment has been removed
    1. Try these threads:

      (not another) review my list- 5 jours en Montreal!

      5 days in Montreal - help us shorten our restaurant list!

      Help me narrow, please

      By Way of Thanking All Chow'ers: My Views of Your Recommendations

      Top mid priced restaurants in montreal

      2 people, less than a week, (at least) 93 suggestions

      Montreal Food Questions.. Newbie

      1 Reply
      1. re: EaterBob

        Thanks a lot Bob. This is really helpful...

      2. Here are a few suggestions of more recent places that are generating a lot of buzz, broken down by budget and location:

        The Main: Icehouse (Southern, Casual)

        Downtown: Deville Dinerbar (deli, trendy)
        Old Montreal: Osteria Venti (Italian, quaint), BEVO (Italian, touristy but nice location)

        Downtown: Dominion Square Tavern (French, charming/historic)
        Old Montreal: Barroco (Market cuisine, trendy), Bar & Boeuf (French/Quebecois, trendy)
        Little Burgundy: Joe Beef (Market cuisine, talk of the town)
        Griffintown: Nora Gray (Italian, lots of buzz)
        Westmount: PARK Restaurant (Japanese/fusion, best kept secret)

        1 Reply
        1. re: 514eats

          I think there are more interesting choices.
          Club chases et peche
          Olive and gourmando
          Dominion square tavern
          Lawrence or sparrow
          Le filet
          Club chases et peche
          Salle a manger
          3petits bouchons
          Tuck shop
          Ice cream
          Les givres
          Havre des glaces
          Ken Coba
          Olivier Potier- the most beautiful bakery in Montreal
          We were just in SF and had some incredible meals. You are very lucky!

        2. 1. DEFINATELY: Do not miss Au Pied de Cochon-if you can watch Tony Bourdain's video on this incredibly unique restaurant that is very much Quebecois style-try through You Tube. Do not miss the resto-but you will need to get reservations in advance. Very heavy meet and rich suaces and fois gras are part of the show.

          2. LA PORTE: An incredibly chef from Brittany with great seafood and presentation skills.

          3. OLIVE AND GOURMANDO: Great breakfast sandwich, coffee, croissants.

          4. OLIVE PORTIER: Pastries from a Parisian trained chef.

          5. LAWRENCE: Very cool gastropub experience. Great brunches too.

          6. MILOS: Great seafood from the original MILOS in Montreal. They are also in New York and Las Vegas, but this is hte original.

          7. LE FILET: The casual version of a high end restaurant-fund and sort of "tapas" style.

          3 Replies
          1. re: foodlovergeneral

            #4 is Olivier Pothier on Sherbrooke West

            sorry to correct your spelling : it is a noteworthy place, I agree totally.

              1. re: superbossmom

                Thanks for correcting it; my apologies for my bad spelling.

            1. I have been to Montreal many times and my favorite eating thing to do there is graze my way through the many food courts in the underground city. Start early, about 11:15 when all of them are set up to feed the thousands of office workers who lunch there---everything will be fresh and beautiful. Many of the vendors are international immigrants so every ethnicity's food is represented. You can keep up this sport for hours on end. (If you haven't yet been to Montreal---somebody figured out that if the underground city---a zillion shops, businesses, hotels etc--- were laid out in a straight line it would be 29 kilometers long so we are talking about a LOT food courts with one mall fading into the next, and there's a whole special bunch at the train station). Do not miss this. If you're from the US---we have nothing to match it.

              13 Replies
              1. re: Querencia

                Sorry Querencia, I would have to respectfully disagree. I would never recommend Montreal's food courts to anyone.
                When I first arrived here, I was getting to know the city and ended up in the Eaten Centre food court. I saw the line at Thai Express, and thought, "Fantastic, there is good, cheap and cheerful Thai food in Montreal!" I lined up with the rest, purchased my food, took one long look at it, took three or four bites, and took it back. It was not fresh and beautiful, it did not taste like any Thai food I have ever eaten, it was awful.

                  1. re: unlaced

                    Perhaps some of Querencia's visits took place in the mid 90s when Faubourg was at its peak. I remember being impressed with the choices when I visited in 1995 and 1996. Unfortunately, Faubourg is not what it once was, and it's now a mostly vacant, depressing space.

                    Some friends have been very impressed with the Satay Brothers Singaporean food stall at the Atwater Market. Quite a few visitors like noshing while visiting the Atwater and Jean Talon Markets, and the experience is a little like visiting Faubourg was, when it was at its peak, in that you've got lots of interesting choices offered at reasonable prices.

                    1. re: prima

                      the exception would be the food court under the scotia bank theater that has a handful of counters with overflowing bounties of delicious looking food. of course lunch time is when to go.

                  2. re: Querencia

                    I have to agree with unlaced - our food courts (with the possible exception of the now-closed? Faubourg) are overwhelmingly mediocre, repetitive, uninteresting, and overpriced. I would never, ever send a visitor there.

                    1. re: kpzoo

                      Agreed - It would be sad for anyone to judge Montreal's food by eating at Food Courts.

                      1. re: ladymcbet

                        I thought Faubourg was reopened after the exterminators were supposedly successful in eradicating the cockroaches. Pity if it's still closed, miss Bangkok.

                        1. re: eatwell

                          Great - glad to hear Faubourg has reopened. I was worried about Grumman '78.

                          1. re: kpzoo

                            Not sure about the state of the Faubourg but Grumman confirmed in a recent tweet that their outlet at the Faubourg has permanently closed.

                            1. re: unlaced

                              Ah - just spotted this:

                              Very sad. I hope they find a new/better/non-cockroach infested location.

                          2. re: eatwell

                            Was at the Faubourg yesterday, so not closed. A few places were closed, but probably just because it was saturday.

                            1. re: Glaff

                              Might as well shut it down. Don't know anyone who would be willing to eat there after the cockroach infestation.

                          3. re: ladymcbet

                            I can't believe that someone's visiting Montreal for the first time and food courts even come into the conversation at all! Food courts are not a measure of the food scene of any city! They are merely there for the lunch crowd!