People often ask me for restaurant recommendations in Montréal. Here are some of my favourite places. In selecting these places, I consider:
- Quality of the food
- Atmosphere, friendliness, ambiance, comfort, accessibility
- Likeliness of coming back to that place over and over again
L’Arrivage – Restaurant at the top of the Musée Pointe-à-Callière in the Old Port (350 Place Royale) – great brunch on the weekend, great view over the Old Port. Open daily 11:30am-4pm.Try their French toast. $15-25.
Arts Café – Cozy retro café (201 Fairmount West, just east of Ave. du Parc) – great sandwiches, soups, and salads; amazing deserts. Beer, wine, tea, and coffee. Good for studying – quiet, lots of light, free WiFi. Great performers at Open Mic nights. Try the smoked salmon bagel and the espresso brownie! $7-10.
L’Atelier d’Argentine – Argentinian Steak House and Cocktail Lounge in the Old Port (355 Rue Marguerite d’Youville) – great brunch on the weekends, and great happy hour cocktails and tapas during the week. Great view of Habitat 67. Open daily. Try their Zombie cocktail. $25-45.
Bagel Etc. – Breakfast diner (4320 Boulevard St. Laurent, corner Marie-Anne) – one of the best breakfast places in the city. Open 7:3-am-4pm everyday, all day breakfast! Busy on the weekends around brunch time. Try the eggs benny – the Hollandaise sauce is very good, or just the classic breakfast. $10-12.
Beauty’s – Diner (93, Avenue Du Mont-Royal, corner St. Urbain) – best traditional breakfast food in Montréal. Also open for lunch (burgers and sandwiches). Always a line-up on the weekends, but it moves fast, and you are greeted by the friendly owner! Everything is delicious, but try the waffles! $10-12.
Breizh Café – Crêperie Bretonne (3991 Boulevard Saint-Laurent, between Duluth and Rachel) – best crêpes in the city. Open 11 am-9pm, closed on Mondays. Try their Nordic galette with smoked salmon and dill sauce, and the simple butter-and-sugar crepe for dessert. $10-25.
Byblos – Persian café (1499 Laurier Est, just west of Ave. Papineau, 10-15min walk from Metro Laurier) – great Persian brunch and lunch place. Cozy, open spaces, decorated with Iranian treasures and books. Breakfast comes with a traditional bread basket and home-made jams. Try the rose petal jam, feta omelet, and the cardamom tea! $12-15.
Café Neve – Coffee, Brunch, Lunch – (151 Rachel Est, corner de Bullion) – great food and coffee! This used to be an old bike repair shop converted into a café. The bike theme is still there in the decor. Great for studying, air-conditioned in the summer, lots of light, free WiFi. Try the Florentine poached eggs served on baguette with pesto and bacon! $7-10.
Leméac – French Cuisine (1045 Laurier Ave. West, near Durocher St.) – great brunch on the weekends. Open daily non to midnight. Special late-night dinner deals after 10pm. Great desserts! $25-45.
Lunch and Dinner:
Arepera – Venezuelan cuisine (4050 Rue De Bullion, corner Duluth) – Great arepas and fresh juices. Arepas are cornmeal buns, similar to English muffins but a bit heavier and gluten free. Busy at dinner time; don’t take reservations.Closed on Mondays.Try their cheese and plantane arepa with the guasacaca sauce. $8-12.
Atti – Cuisine Coréenne (2077 rue University, Metro McGill, hidden below street level, just south of Sherbrooke on University) – great, light, and delicious Korean food. Every meal comes with a small soup and appetizer. Sit-down. Even comfortable to eat at the bar. Try the sweet-potato rice noodle stir fry! $10-12.
Avesta – Turkish Cuisine (2077 Saint Catherine St. West, corner Fort St. close to the Atwater Forum) – great Turkish food. Open 11am-11pm, closed on Sundays. $10-15.
La Chilenita – Empanadas and other Chilean food (130 Roy, corner de Bullion) – best empanadas in the city. Open daily 11am – 8pm. Try their meat empanadas and the Neapolitana empanada, as well as the dulce de leche dessert roll. $5-10.
Burger Royal – Burgers and milk shakes (3820 Boulevard Saint-Laurent, corner Roy) – Great burgers with fresh (not frozen) and in-house ground beef. Their philosophy is: Farm to table. Grass-fed, Free Range, Hormone Free & Antibiotic Free Beef & Poultry. In House Grind & Handmade Patties. Local Produce. Open daily 11:30 – 10pm. Try their Mushroom Melt Burger! $10-15.
Chez Gatsé – Tibetan Restaurant (317 Ontario St. East, corner St. Denis) – great Tibetan food. Try their momos and shapales with ground beef! $10-15.
Gourmet Burger – Stylish burger joint (1433b rue Bishop, south of de Maisonneuve) – best burgers in Montréal! Small but cozy place. Try their different mini burgers and the yam fries with garlic mayo! $5-10.
L’Gros Luxe Café – Tapas (3807 Rue Saint-André, corner Roy, close to Parc Lafontaine) – great tapas, grilled cheese sandwiches, and cocktails. Open daily 11am-12am. Second location in Mile End at 150 Rue Bernard West, corner Waverly. Try their roasted cauliflower and tacos! $10-20.
Kaza Maza – Cuisine Syrienne (4629 Ave. du Parc, between Mont-Royal and Villeneuve) – great Syrian food, open for dinner and brunch. Life music on Tuesdays. Great for small groups of guests. The place is not very big, reservation recommended. Try the garlic chicken Kefta and the Syrian wines! $15-20.
Lychee – Cuisine Asiztique (187 Mont-Royal Est, corner Hotel-de-Ville) – great Asian fusion place. Sit-down and take-out. Very cozy and friendly place. Everything is delicious. Try the Pad Thai or General Tao Chicken. $12-17.
Le Nil Bleu – Ethiopian Cuisine (3706 Rue Saint-Denis, across from metro Sherbrooke) – delicious food, great for sharing in small and large groups, and for couples. Their dishes are served on a large savoury crepe, to be eaten with your fingers. Great atmosphere and service! Open daily 12:30pm – 11pm. Try their lamb and spinach dishes.$20-35.
Prato Pizzeria – Stone-oven Pizza (3891 Boulevard St-Laurent, corner Napoleon) – best stone-oven pizza in the city. $15-25.
Rumi – Persian cuisine (5198 Hutchison) – best Persian restaurant in Montréal. Open for brunch, lunch, and dinner. Great and cozy atmosphere, very friendly staff. Delicious food. The mint tea is very sweet! Everything is exquisite, but try any of the lamb dishes! $20-30.
Maison Phayathai – Thai cuisine (1235 Rue Guy, corner St. Catherine) – authentic and delicious Thai food. Open for lunch and dinner: 11:30-2:30pm, and 5:00-10:00pm. Try their eggplant dishes! $20-30.
Sala Rosa – Tapas Espanol (4848 St.Laurent, between Villeneuve and St. Joseph) – great Spanish tapas and wines! Busy on the weekends, but even comfortable to eat at the bar. Sometimes they have live flamenco dance shows. Try the friend goat cheese balls with honey! $10-20.
Vasco Da Gamma – Café Portuguese (1472 Peel St., south of de Maisonneuve) – amazing sandwiches, salads, soups, deserts, coffee and tea. They also do catering for events and functions. Busy during lunch time during the week, but service is very fast and friendly. Try the tuna burger or the grilled veggies and goat cheese panini! $10-20.
Vegan and Vegetarian:
Aux Vivres – Vegan (4631 Boulevard St. Laurent) – best vegan food ever! Great terrace in the back, open in the summer. Great for any time of the day, brunch, lunch, dinner. Sit-down and take-out. Sometimes busy on the weekends around brunch time. Try the corn bread with fresh guacamole appetizer and the dragon bowl! $10-12.
Crudessence – Vegan, raw food (105 Rachel, between St. Urbain and Esplanade) – fresh juices, smoothies, salads, sandwiches, brunch and amazing deserts! Try the cashew nut blueberry “cheese” cake! They also sell cookbooks and health foods, and have other locations at MacKay and Atwater Market. $15-20.
Chu Chai – Cuisine Thailanadaise Végétarienne (4088 rue St. Denis, between Duluth and Rachel) – everything on their menu is incredibly delicious and all vegetarian (even the duck!). The restaurant is divided into two sections, one formal, one casual (bring your own wine) and a take-out counter. Front terrace in the summer. Try the coconut shrimp soup, duck salad, and the duck red curry! $12-17.
Bars, Pubs, and Breweries:
Dominion Square Tavern – Restaurant/Pub (1243 Metcalfe St., corner St. Catherine, Metro Peel) – Great cocktails, gourmet food, and a lovely atmosphere in this historic pub, recently refurbished with beautiful decor by the same owners who run the Whisky Café in the Mile End. Right across from the Scotia Bank Movie Theatre, great spot for before and after the movies. Mon-Fri 11:30am-midnight, Sat-Sun 4:30pm-midnight. $20-45.
Olde Orchard – Pub (20 Prince Arthur St West, corner St. Laurent, other locations downtown and on Monkland Ave.) Open daily 11:30am-1am. Great pub food and atmosphere. $15-25.
Reservoir – Local micro brewery (9 Avenue Duluth East, corner St. Laurent) – Artisanal beers and snacks. Great terrace upstairs. Open for brunch on the weekends, $15-25.
Whisky Café – Tasting bar and lounge (5800 Boulevard Saint-Laurent, corner Bernard) – carries over 150 scotch whiskeys, Portos and wines. Open daily 5pm-1am. $15-35.
Kem Coba – Ice cream and sorbets (60 Ave. Fairmount West, corner Clark) – best gourmet ice cream in the world! Their soft-serve changes every two weeks. Open noon – 9pm. Closed on Mondays and in the winter. Try their salted butter ice cream! $3-7.
Sophie Sucrée – gluten free and vegan bakery (167 Avenue des Pins East, corner de Bullion) – Now also open for brunch.Open daily 11am-6pm. Try their banana bread and coconut-icing cup cakes! $5-20.