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Sep 17, 2012 08:25 PM

Unique Ethnic Cuisine

I remember eating at a Druze restaurant in NYC. Very unusual and very good; probably one of the few in North America (if not the only one). So I got to thinking, what are unusual and unique ethnic cuisines in Montreal that you might not find in other cities. There used to be a Uigur restaurant here, but I heard it closed. There is a Nepalese one in Lachine.

I am asking this also because we have friends coming who are world and world cuisine travellers, so I am wondering what we can surprise them with. (It could also be a regional cuisine like from a particular part of a larger country. For example, the Magdalene Islands restaurant in Verdun. Or, until a year or so ago, in Ottawa there was an indigneous foods restaurant in the Market area there).


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  1. How about Restaurant Su (Turkish) in Verdun. Heard great things about Aryana (Afghan) in the West Island, will be checking it out. soon.

    > the Magdalene Islands restaurant in Verdun

    Do you mean Les Delices de l'Ile Maurice? That's food from Mauritius in Africa, not the Magdalen Islands. ;-) If you mean something else, let me know cause I'm intrigued.

    5 Replies
    1. re: kpzoo

      Les iles en ville, 5335 Wellington, Verdun. Magdelen Islands cuisine in a home cooked atmosphere.

      Another example is the Ile de la Reunion restaurant/virtual golf range in St. Sauveur. Excellent food!

      (and yes, I know about Les Delices. There used to be another Ile Maurice resto on St. Laurent. And I think there is an Ile de la Reunion restaurant on Duluth in the Plateau).

      1. re: williej

        Thank you, so cool!

        Adding to my list of places-to-try in Verdun.

        1. re: williej

          Unfortunately the Reunion restaurant on Duluth has closed.

          There are three Indonesian restaurants here now, Nonya, Gado Gado and Mia Tapas (also a food sculpting institute).. Khyber Pass is an Afghan place. Maybe llama at Mochica, the Peruvian place on St-Denis?

          1. re: Plateaumaman

            How are the Indonesian offerings at Mia? I've only been for their (Western) brunch.

            1. re: jptimbaud

              I haven't had a chance to try it but an Indonesian friend of mine approves, so that's a good sign as she's quite picky.

      2. Quebecois cuisine isn't unusual and unique enough for you? Tortiere, maple syrup, poutine, michigans, cretons, oreilles de crisse, pizza-ghetti, smoked meat and bagels aren't exactly the stuff you find everyday in other parts of the world.

        1 Reply
        1. re: EaterBob

          We're looking for something both our friends and us will enjoy. I enjoy Quebecois food all the time!

        2. Not unique but Kaza Maza on Parc Ave and Alep on Jean-Talon are good Syrian/Middle Eastern options, and Café Ellefsen on Saint-Zotique for Scandinavian (probably few other places serve Norwegian poutine).

          Byblos Café on Laurier Est for a Persian breakfast (offered weekdays too), lunch or casual dinner (omelettes, a variety of mezze, sandwiches and two stews with saffron rice daily, with a smaller, cheaper option at lunch). It's good, casual and affordable and a nice space.

          1. Not far from Les îles en ville is Chez Maggy (4912 Wellington) which, as far as I know, is Montreal's only Bengali restaurant. I went there last night and was very pleased with the tilapia curry. For $14.95 I had the fish curry, salad, parota, rice, lentils and curry vegetables. The appetizers aren't expensive either, 50 cents or a buck for each (samosas, pakora, etc.). It's cash only. The owner, Maggy, is very nice and you can bring your own wine. I highly recommend it.

            There's also an East African restaurant the next block up as well that is very good. I had the goat which was supposed to be braised but when I got it, it was actually grilled to perfection. You have to be patient with both places because the service can be slow but it is well worth the wait.

            1 Reply
            1. re: mattmtl1213

              During a 3 night visit to Montreal, we went to Chez Maggy's to check out the Bengali food. It was DREADFUL. The pakora were fine, but the curries were terrible. Almost no seasoning (and not just no salt: no spices or aromatics either) and the curries were thin and watery. It was really disappointing. It was without doubt the worst Indian food we've ever had, and that includes my own culinary misadventures. Maggy herself seemed nice, and I am sorry, but the food was terrible.