montreal oysters / lobster / seafood
I am going to Montreal next weekend to enjoy your city (party and eat). I love Oysters, Lobster and seafood and would like to find a serious place (or places) that serve all of the right. I an A chef (20 years) from New Orleans and I know my seafood. I am allreadt going to try the smoked meat and bagels thing as well as some regional and ethnic food but if there is some great seafood places i would be very insterested! I dont need classy (I owned my own four star place) and I will go to any neighborhood but I like it good! Any help is wellcome!
There's a Greek place on Park called Molinoes that has amazing grilled fresh fish...done Greek style of course. Very simple, very fresh, and a bit on the expensive side.
For oysters there's a new place that just opened up on Ste. Laurent called "Bubbles." It's a very upscale chi-chi champagne bar w/ a menu I'm dying to go try out but am waiting for a VERY special occasion to do so! It's downstairs from a high class pool bar called "Baci."
Just up the street from there is a more reasonable choice for oysters called "Maestro S.V.P." They're quite well known in the city for their selection and freshness. I've seen some terrific reviews but the closest I've come to eating there is having their famous oyster shooters at a street fair!
Hope you enjoy our fair city. I'm a chef as well...run my own catering company now. And my husband is a chef too, but w/ our work schedules we don't get out anywhere near as often as we'd like to. (I'm sure you know what that's like!)
I read your post and am interested to try Bubbles when I am there in July! I was wondering if you could recommend any other new, hot or happenin' restaurants in Montreal. I haven't been there since last fall and love to try new places every time I visit. I was also interested in Outremont or Westmount, neighborhoods I haven't previously explored too much. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
There's a couple of new places that have opened up on St. Laurent right near Prince Arthur. Sofia (right on the north west corner) has been around for about a year (?) and is owned by the same people who run Primadonna, Meditteraneo, Bice (sp?), and a couple of other very "high class" places. I'm not sure on the exact way it works but the chefs from Primadonna & Mediterraneo work at Sofia as well on some sort of rotating basis. (As I said, I'm not sure how it works...) But the end result is you get food prepared by some of the city's better chefs at a lesser cost. We ate at Sofia about a month or so ago and really liked it. Plate presentation was beautiful, the food was lovely w/ very clean flavors and the service blew us away. The servers there don't actually serve...they take your order, enter it into the computer and the busboy takes over the "grunt" work from there leaving the server free to make your every wish (almost!) come true. Extremely attentive and very very very attractive girls (which thrilled the hubby! LOL)
Another place that I haven't eaten at yet but am planning to go to sometime in the next couple of weeks has only been open a couple of months. It's a couple of doors north of Sophia and is called Ecco. Some very nice classic Italian dishes w/ a few interesting twists thrown in. The owner is very hands on...from painting the large paintings on the walls himself, to designing the menu. I've heard extremely good things about it.
In Westmount there's a place called Bistro Java U. that's a paninni/coffee place in the day time and then an elegant dining experience at night. The chef there trained at Globe and is very "cutting edge" w/ his food selections. The menu changes every two weeks and features a few appetizers/salads, a couple of fish dishes, a couple of meat dishes and a couple of pasta dishes. Not a huge menu but everything on it is carefully thought out and the presentation is absolutely gorgeous. I've heard people who have been to eat there compare it to Toqué...but I don't think I'd rate it quite that high. Their chef is young (30 ish?) and is obviously passionate about his food. I've eaten there a few times and really like the way the menu reflects the seasonality of the food.
Hope this helps a bit! If I think of any others I've heard about I'll post back.
I really appreciate the advice, thank you so much! I've been to Mediterraneo, Toque and the Globe and really enjoyed my dining experience at each one, and I'm anxious to try these new places! I've heard good things about Bistro Java on another Montreal food website as well. If you ever plan to visit Boston, I'll be glad to return the favor with some suggestions!