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Mar 24, 2013 04:29 PM

Bizarre but true: Recommend MTL chain restaurants for visiting US relatives?

I've got visiting American relatives coming to Montreal soon. One of them is a really picky eater who absolutely hates trying anything new, and doesn't really like anything spicy (or as one person said, with any flavour at all).

Where they come from, all-you-can-eat buffets and chain restaurants like Red Lobster and Applebees are the norm. They prefer "American Italian" vs more authentic Italian... O_O Still, as the host, I want to give them at least one or two options while they're here that don't stray too far from their comfort zone.

I know this is a long shot, but what would you recommend in downtown, Old Montreal + the Plateau? Preferably sit-down dining.

I was thinking roughly: The Keg, St-Hubert, and those touristy places like Steak Frites...?

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  1. Maybe try Baton's one of the better chains

    The Keg is also a good option with the added benefit of having a nice atmosphere.

    1. BYOB Italian at Lombardi on Duluth
      Baton Rouge
      Burger de Ville
      Dunn's and/or Reubens do a ton of tourist trade downtown.

      1. I immediately thought of the Keg when I read this (before I saw you had mentioned it)... I suppose Biftheque as well. I don't really go to sit down chains but there is a Hooters in the South Shore.

        The more I think about it, I dont think I would bother trying to send them to a chain. There are plenty of mediocre restaurants you could send them to that are not chains... and lots of American style restaurants too. Why not just send them for a pizza at il foccolaio (it is really good) or something else that isn't exotic.

        1. maybe try:
          it has the added benefit that it is on crescent street

          1 Reply
          1. re: catroast

            I would go with that too, many "safe" choices on the menu.

          2. I'm going to second The Keg. Whenever my own "picky relatives" are in town, it's among their first choices, and I must admit I'm usually not disappointed myself. Don't get your expectations too high, but you could do a lot worse when it comes to chains.

            As for Steak Frites, I only went once and I promised myself never to repeat the experience. You can read the account I wrote here:

            I haven't been to Baton Rouge in a very long time, but I seem to recall it was also decent.

            3 Replies
            1. re: philippefs

              The Keg is really good. It's consistent and they're good at what they good (steak and potatoes).

              Also, the title of this thread cracked me up.

              1. re: Shattered

                not consistent and sometimes bad
                i had 2 bad experiences recently
                but it was really my fault for not complaining

                1. re: catroast

                  I don't like it either. How about gibby's? I haven't been in years but people love it, very basic cooking and a little bit more Montreal.