Restaurants in Montreal
As one of North America’s most diverse and cosmopolitan cities, restaurants in Montreal run the gamut from charming Parisian patisseries to cutting-edge fine dining establishments, upscale steakhouses, Jewish delis, and small local eateries serving cuisines from all around Europe, Asia, the Caribbean and Latin America. You certainly cannot visit Montreal without sampling the local favorite, poutine – French fries smothered in cheese curds and gravy – served throughout the city at gourmet establishments and fast-food joints alike. The character of Montreal restaurants varyiesby neighborhood – the Plateau Mont-Royal is a hotspot for trendy fusion fare and hipster bars in equal measure, while downtown Montreal and the Old Port house some of the most upscale establishments– but you’ll be hard-pressed to leave the city feeling blasé about Montreal’s dining scene.
Some of the best restaurants in Montreal include Le Lapin Sauté, which specializes in rabbit dishes like rabbit cassoulet and rabbit pie, served in a rustic dining room in Old Montreal; Garde Manger, which draws a mixed crowd of hipsters and gourmands and serves impeccable haute cuisine like lobster risotto, short ribs and snow crabs in an upscale and urbane setting; Au Pied de Cochon, which offers up pork, duck and steak dishes created by an award winning chef; and Queue de Cheval, which serves a dozen varieties of steak and is worth the extravagant expense. Don’t forget to stop by Saint Viateur Bagel, which has several outposts around the city, to sample Montreal’s famous bagels, dense and chewy and jostling with New York’s own doughy style of bagel for supremacy.
In 2004, when chef Normand Laprise moved his acclaimed restaurant from its neighborhood haunt up in the Plateau to this airy space downtown, he might have been sending a message with his choice of décor: red carpet all the way.
Bistro Bienville opened in 2006 on a tucked-away, tree-lined residential street that’s a five-minute walk from St. Denis. The restaurant's dining room has white walls and narrow tables, and the exposed kitchen produces an ever-changing menu of a dozen or so dishes.
Located in the city's Mile End district, Jun-I serves fresh fish and inventive Japanese-style dishes from namesake chef Junichi Ikematsu.
Laloux is a Parisian-style bistro in the Plateau neighborhood that offers all of its wines by the glass. The chefs use certified-sustainable seafood and seasonal produce to create menus that change daily.
A secret marinade and wood-charcoal grilling make the Portuguese barbecued chicken Rotisserie Portugalia's signature dish. The chicken has a loyal following and must be ordered an hour in advance.
For eight years, chef Laurent Godbout has been putting a delicious spin on classics (try his pan-seared sea bass with squid-ink risotto, scallops, and a chorizo cream sauce) in this Old Montreal dining room—and he hasn’t missed a beat yet.
Ask for a table on the shaded patio and order a bowl of vegetarian chili and a hearty sandwich.
Traditional French cuisine is the specialty at Chez Gautier, which has been a Montreal staple since the 1970's. The bistro is styled after a Parisian brasserie, with leather benches, dark woodwork, and brass pillars.
Set among Vieux-Montréal’s cobblestoned lanes, this eatery is marked only by the antler-and-fish crest hanging outside the door (appropriate, since chasse et pêche means “hunting and fishing”).
Peruvian-born chef and owner of Laurier-West restaurant Raza, Mario Navarrete Jr. opened Madre, his second restaurant, in 2007.
Dépanneur le Pick Up is one of Montreal’s many convenience stores, turned quirky lunch counter and diet-sensitive bakery. Seating is available near the indoor counter or on the back patio. Along with beer and candy bars, Le Pick Up sells breakfasts made on St.