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May 8, 2006 10:50 PM

First-Time Visitor Needs Opinions on Restaurants for the Difficult Sunday and Monday nights.

  • c

This is my first posting to Chowhound and also my first visit to Montreal. For my birthday, my mother wants to show me the lovely city where she was first married over thirty years ago. Unfortunately, we arrive on my birthday which is a Sunday (June 4) and we leave Tuesday morning. As I've learned through this site that's a difficult time as most restaurants are closed.

Thanks to your expertise, I intend to visit Olive et Gourmando and the St. Viateur Bagel shop for breakfast/lunch.

For dinner on Sunday and Monday, I would appreciate your counsel on deciding between:

Pied de Cochon
Pierre du Calvet
Les Ramparts

We prefer food that is simple, not overly fussy or experimental, just solid ingredients done well and bursting with flavor. I'm worried that Pied de Cochon's food may be too rich for my mother - she's just not the type to suck on marrow bones or eat fois gras with everything!

I appreciate your advice and cannot wait to visit!

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  1. Let me also add Cube to the above list.

    1. First of all...what a sweet thing for a mother to do with her daughter. My suggestion is to make a reservation at Les Heritiers in the plateau, 5091 de Lanaudière & Laurier (514-528-4953). It's a BYO and you won't be disappointed. Get the "tasting menu" which comes with appy, salad, entree and dessert. It's a BYO, so be sure to bring some wine. I believe they are open on Sunday nights, but call to make sure. Please post and let us know how your special trip went.

      1. I would do Coccagne and Cube. Both have delicious food, and Coccagne won't break the bank, considering that Cube will take a large dent out of the wallet.

        The thing is, the restaurants you list vary widley in ambiance (and price range), but these two would be my pick, and I'd try and sneak in a lunch at L'Express.

        I'm one of the people who thinks that APDC is overrated. Perhaps it's because such rich food makes me feel ill, and you can be hard pressed to find a light meal there, let alone a light dish. It sounds like your mom might be similar to myself (she may not get sick, but it sounds like she isn't a huge fan of the uber rich food) if that is the case, I would leave it out of the itinerary.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Beccaroo

          Thank you both so much for responding and for the kind words. I really like your recommendations - of the three restaurants, which one would you choose if it was your birthday? Ambience is important in addition to food quality.

          1. re: Claire

            Because I love the food at all three, this is based on ambiance.
            Because I've most recently been to Cube and Coccagne, I would be more likely to choose one of these, because I can litterally still taste the meals in my mouth.
            Of these two, I would choose Cube if I were going with a more upbeat crowd/person, and Coccagne if I were going with a more layed back crowd/person. I do think that Coccagne and Les Herritiers are better suited to parties of two than Cube is. What's nice about Les Herritiers is that the meal stretches on for about 3 hours, you eat sooo much but you don't notice it, because they have the perfect sized intervals between courses. It is very close quarters there though, and although no one is actually listening to your conversations, it can still seem a little invasive.
            I myslef had my last birthday dinner at Les Chevres, but it's not open on the 4th....It was I Think the ideal setting for a family birthday dinner, and of your three, I think Coccagne is the most similar (for a fraction of the price, though the desserts aren't the same, but oh well)

        2. TRIP REPORT:

          Montreal was lovely. My mother and I stayed at Pierre du Calvet which was wonderful. Cube was my birthday dinner and I could not have been happier with your recommendation! I even mentioned the fried goat cheese amuse bouche which they brought out as well.

          We had a sentimental lunch at the Chateau Champlain where my parents honeymooned more than 30 years ago. The chef at that time gave her his french onion soup recipe which I grew up on. She wanted to revisit and wouldn't you know, it tasted exactly the same! She couldn't have been more pleased.

          The second night's dinner was at Cocagne, this was not a great fit for us. Some dishes were superb, others tried harder for artful presentation than taste.

          Thanks again for your suggestions!

          1. This is as it should be! You took suggestions - some were a good fit...others weren't - and you had a good time, in spite of it all. I think many people want each and every dinner out, most certainly when they're on vacation, to be the BEST EVER! And life just isn't like that. What might be good for you might be not-so-good for someone else. Good to hear that you and your mother had a good time. I'm going to Montréal at the end of the month & can't wait to go to Cube!