Are you stuck with the problem of deciding where to eat for a special occasion? Or maybe your parents are in town and dinner is on their dime? Although there are many places that will impress in this city, finding the best places to indulge your appetite can be difficult. For a dinner that costs approximately $25 to 35, here are some personal favourite locations where you can enjoy an exceptional meal out in Montreal.
I always choose Joe Beef whenever my family comes to visit. It’s one of those staple restaurants that everyone should experience at least once while living in this city. Joe Beef uses classic and indulgent Quebec ingredients such as maple syrup, cream, and foie gras in innovative ways. With an ambience reminiscent of a classic pub, this restaurant serves up fine dining twists on fast food such as the “foie gras double down”—a crave-inducing sandwich with peppery fried chicken serving as the bread, stuffed with foie gras, bacon, and melted cheddar cheese, all drizzled with maple syrup. The interplay between fat and sugar is mouth-wateringly irresistible. Other noteworthy dishes include a chicken nugget-style meal made instead with smoked eel, a moist piece of halibut covered in a pimento pepper crust and served with a tomato-infused butter sauce, and fresh blueberry sorbet with Madeleine cakes.
2491 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest.
Tel: (514) 935-6504
(Alycia Noë / McGill Tribune)
Au Pied de Cochon
The brainchild of chef Martin Picard, Au Pied de Cochon is known for its full appreciation of the pig. The chef creates succulent homemade sausages, head cheese, and even offers pig’s trotters—i.e. feet. A visit to this protein-centric restaurant will amaze anyone as it wastes no part of the animal, while managing to make even their most eccentric dishes delicious. Au Pied de Cochon is by no means small, but since it is usually filled to capacity it can begin to feel slightly cramped. Be prepared for a buzzing atmosphere filled with many customers, all bursting with energy.
536 Avenue Duluth E.
Tel: (514) 281-1114
Montreal is an excellent city to explore up-and-coming chefs. Park, a new-age sushi restaurant in Westmount, only serves what chef Antonio Park considers ‘in season’, and ships fresh fish in from all over the world. Chef Park creates an unusual and delightful experience that reflects his modern approach to food, with the kitchen open to the view of those in the dining room. Visible all night long, the chefs work meticulously to carve fish and craft gorgeous sushi presentations. When you order a tasting plate, the chef creates any type of sushi after his inclination. Although the patron has no choice, the combinations I have experienced—such as jalapeño hamachi and B.C. albacore topped with kimchi—blew my mind, bringing sushi to a whole new level.
378 Ave Victoria, Westmount.
Tel: (514) 750-7534
A relaxed bistro delighting with traditional British fare, Lawrence is another one of my recently discovered favourites. Walking into the restaurant that seats at most 30 people, your first impression may be that the atmosphere is informal—the entire restaurant is contained in one room, and there is no one waiting to greet you at the door. It may be tempting to write-off the restaurant, but you must put aside your preconceived notions about British food and typical dining settings when you eat at this restaurant. Simply enjoy their bizarre creations like rabbit offal (internal organs) and sorrel on toast, arctic char with horseradish and red wine, and beef cheek and tongue served atop lentils.
5201 St. Laurent Blvd.
Tel: (514) 503-1070