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.
Chef-owners Frédéric Morin and David McMillan are the mavericks behind Joe Beef, a delightfully disheveled counterpoint to the city’s often overstyled restaurants.
Just steps from the Jean-Talon farmers’ market, diners sit at a counter and watch chef-owners Mathieu Cloutier and Jean-Philippe St.-Denis cook up whatever’s freshest. (With only one other employee, the chefs are also the restaurant’s servers, sommeliers, and dishwashers.)
Rotisserie Romados is known for its wood-charcoal-grilled Portuguese chicken served under a mountain of French fries. At the small corner restaurant, which opened in 1994, cooks use a paintbrush to drizzle the chicken, rice, and seasoned fries with spiced chili oil.
Located in the Mile End area, Wilensky’s Light Lunch serves unfussy sandwiches and fountain sodas. Opened in 1932, the restaurant was made an icon by Mordecai Richler’s The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz (1959).
The Poutine (fries with gravy and cheese) come in 25 varieties starting at $4.00.
Open since 1980, the restaurant is still the spot for expertly prepared French classics such as the generous pot-au-feu or the citrusy octopus-and-lentil salad.
A cheerful after-work crowd heads to this trendy wine bar for locally brewed McKeown cider and tasty bar snacks like grilled calamari and olives marinated with fennel.
Greek seafood restaurant Milos opened in Montreal in 1979 and was chef-owner Costas Spiliadis’ first eatery, preceding locations in New York, Athens, and Las Vegas. Fresh seafood ranges from sardines and octopus to Gulf shrimp and red snapper—all served with olive oil pressed by Spiliadis’ sister
A bring-your-own-wine restaurant, L’Atelier combines market produce with comfort food by chefs Patrick Garneau and Benjamin Fortier. The Mile End restaurant is rustic with unfinished wood tables, logs sliced and stacked to resemble a woodpile, and photo portraits of local farmers.
Liverpool House sits next-door-but-one to sibling restaurant Joe Beef and serves market-sourced dishes cooked in French and Italian styles.
Opened in 1995, this sushi bar specializes in using imported fish from Japanese and other world markets. So fresh it's sometimes delivered still alive, the fish selections are the main attraction of chef Antonio Park’s omakase, or sushi tasting menu.
Set on one of the sweetest little streets in the city, next to a row of London-style terrace houses and across from an old-school convenience store, the pint-size Montée has been wooing in-the-know locals with its forward-thinking (and remarkably affordable) degustation menus for a handful of yea
Bouchonné closed in 2010.
Opened in 1928, this kosher-style Jewish deli marinates its meat for 10 full days before hot-smoking it. The preservative-free beef brisket (similar to pastrami) is ordered by the fat content: either fat, medium-fat, medium, or lean.
Lunch on pressed charcuterie sandwiches at Cluny ArtBar, a funky little art gallery and café housed in a former foundry.