EAT

Montréal is rich in history and (foodie) culture, which is why a food guide is necessary to ensure that you dont miss any of this metropolitan city’s most legendary gems. Montréal is serious about its cuisine; it isn’t unusual to see lines creeping out the doors of the city’s most popular establishments.

From the mainstays to the savvy new eateries, Montréal’s world-renowned chefs are whipping up some seriously tantalizing dishes. Small bites, hearty helpings of famous smoked meat, gastronomical wonders — such is the foodie fare to be found in the restaurants below, with plenty of ambience to boot.

Don’t forget to make a reservation where applicable — avoid those lines and dig in!

St-Viateur Bagel

Image credit: @stviateurbagel (Instagram)

Address: 263 Rue Saint Viateur O, Montréal

Reservations: Not necessary

Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly: Yes

Price: $

One of the great gifts bestowed upon the world by Montréal is its bagels. If you haven’t been to an authentic bagel shop in Montréal, then really, you haven’t lived yet. Our favourite? St-Viateur Bagel Shop. This Montréal gem has been churning out its legendary hand-rolled bagels since 1957. If you’re in need of a carb fix, the classic sesame seed bagel is sure to impress.

Schwartzs Deli

Image credit: @nickfreda (Instagram)

Address: 3895 Saint-Laurent Blvd, Montréal

Reservations: Not necessary

Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly: No

Price: $

Smoked meat and Montréal are basically synonymous. A trip to this metropolitan city is not complete without a visit to Schwartz’s Deli. This Montréal landmark has been serving up its famous smoked meat sandwiches since 1928 and has remained a local favourite for generations.  Don’t expect anything special when it comes to the vintage decor; the deli has kept the same look for about 90 years! Schwartz’s keeps it simple with bistro chairs, wooden tables, and newspaper clippings lining the walls.

Helicoptere

Image credit: @helicoptere.mtl (Instagram)

Address: 4255 Ontario St. E, Montréal

Reservations: Essential

Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly: Yes

Price: $$

Helicoptere is run by chef David Ollu, pastry chef Melodie Perez- Mousseau, and sommelier Youri Bussières Fournel. The trio has created a relaxed establishment that features casual prices, a welcoming atmosphere, and a refined culinary approach. The menu highlights seasonal fare through small creative plates, allowing the ingredients to speak for themselves.

Moccione

Image credit: @karolanerondeau (Instagram)

Address: 380 Villeray, Montréal

Reservations: Essential

Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly: Not especially

Price: $$

This charming and quaint Italian restaurant is the brainchild of Maxime Landry and Luca Cianciulli. Located in the heart of Villeray, Moccione’s low-key vibe complements the neighbourhood’s personality and is the perfect place to enjoy a relaxed evening. Designed in collaboration with Gabrielle Lafond and Tendances Concept Montréal, Maccione’s interior is intimate and timeless, with a vibe that straddles the line between chic sophistication and the coziness of nonna’s home. The menu is simple and traditional, with changes implemented seasonally to highlight only the freshest ingredients available.

Foiegwa

Image credit: Foiegwa

Address: 3001 Notre-Dame St. W, Montréal

Reservations: Essential

Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly: Not especially

Price: $$$

First of all, we give the name of this establishment five stars; in today’s very pretentious restaurant scene, Foiegwa gets extra points for having a sense of humour. The “French diner” vibe is a result of its vision for an establishment that captures “France meets North America.” Foiegwa’s menu leans on classic French brasserie cuisine and you can expect to find Parisian classics such as grenouille, escargot, traditional onion soup, and of course foie gras, offered in a myriad of ways. The decor is equally as impressive, as the Americanized-French-diner concept extends to the design of the establishment. The space features white tiled walls flanked by cappuccino-brown banquettes, sketches of famous Montrealers by Marc Tremblay, and slightly tinted globe fixtures to warm the atmosphere.

Monarque

Image credit: @cetinconnu (Instagram)

Address: 406 Rue Saint-Jacques, Montréal

Reservations: Required

Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly: Not especially

Price: $$$$

For those who adore great design and food, there’s nowhere better to dine out than Monarque. The restaurant is the project of the father-son duo Jérémie and Richard Bastien. First off, what sets Monarque apart from the rest is its outstanding space, which impresses with its grandeur and beautiful design. The restaurant was thoughtfully designed by architect Alain Carle. The large space is divided into three sections; a brasserie section, where you can expect a more casual dining experience; the elegant salle à manger, where you can enjoy a four-course menu; and the private dining area, which holds up to 35 guests. Monarque’s menu, which changes seasonally, is designed to highlight only the freshest ingredients through both bold and traditional French-inspired dishes. For an amazing experience encompassing complex and fresh flavours, set in an undeniably striking space, Monarque is a must-try in the heart of Montreal.

LOV

Image credit: LOV

Address: 464 McGill St, Montréal

Reservations: Essential

Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly: Extremely

Price: $$

LOV (standing for Local, Organic, Vegetarian) is the kind of vegan restaurant that even hardcore dairy-lovers and carnivores would line up for. Chef Stéphanie Audet, who previously devised the raw menus at Crudessence, is responsible for the mainly vegan and gluten-free menu here, the ingredients of which she sources from local farms. The restaurant carries a botanical vibe throughout and is adorned with a Palm Beach palette of pistachio green and shades of white, featured through large, leafy-patterned wall coverings, whitewashed brick walls, palm printed banquettes, and lofty ceilings that anchor wicker cage-style lampshades. As for the menu, the cuisine also carries the botanical theme as chef Audet emphasizes the significance of all things natural, vegetarian, organic, and healthy throughout her dishes. Vegetables are the pièce de résistance of LOV’s menu, which is exclusively vegetarian (with many vegan-friendly options). Menu staples include gnocchi served with a hemp-basil pesto, the LOV poutine made with vegan cheeze and miso gravy, or the kale mac ’n’ cheeze. Last but certainly not least, LOV is known for being an incredibly Instagrammable spot.

Restaurant Mélisse

Image credit: @ondejeune (Instagram)

Address: 719 William St, Montréal

Reservations: Essential

Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly: Yes

Price: $$$

This Pinterest-perfect space is open 7 days a week for breakfast, lunch (or brunch), and dinner. Designed by Atelier Lovasi, the space features an abundance of natural light, hanging plants, potted succulents, and artwork by Geneviève Beyries. The menu is short and sweet, as the establishment emphasizes simplicity in order to provide the elements of its dishes with the opportunity to radiate their individual brilliance.

Toque!

Image credit: @restaurant_toque (Instagram)

Address: 900 Place Jean-Paul Riopelle, Montréal

Reservations: Essential

Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly: Yes

Price: $$$$

If you’re feeling really fancy or if you’re just craving a world-class culinary experience, then Toqué! is the spot for you. Known as a Montréal landmark, the establishment has been open for nearly 3 decades and has carried a reputation of being one of Montréal ’s best restaurants, if not the best, for fine dining. In fact, Toqué! was ranked as the #1 restaurant in Canada by a panel of chefs, critics, and diners. Chef-owner Normand Laprise utilizes French techniques with farm-to-table ingredients to artfully create his masterpieces. Each plate is garnished with such immaculate attention to detail that you may catch yourself debating whether to actually eat the dish and ruin the work of art. The avant-garde French offerings are paralleled by the establishment’s decor. The restaurant is playfully colourful, featuring a burnt orange bar, bright red banquettes, and a fuchsia ceiling.

Un PoDi Piu

Image credit: @francescadire (Instagram)

Address: 3 Rue de la Commune E, Montréal

Reservations: Recommended

Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly: Yes

Price: $$

Un Po’ Di Piu is upping the Italian game in Montréal with its classic trattoria-meets-1970s-modernist vibe. What instantly sets Un Po’ Di Piu apart from the rest is its appealing Old Port location. The interior decor by Zébulon Perron is just as impressive; light streams in through arched windows onto a funky, custom tile mosaic floor. The decor features a teal colour palette, crushed velvet banquettes, vintage light fixtures, and a large curved bar for added panache. Chef Nick Siambattisto’s menu centres around traditional small plates — think burrata, salumi towers, oysters, and fresh focaccia, featuring impeccable quality all around.

Dandy

Image credit: @dandy.mtl (Instagram)

Address: 244 Rue Saint-Jacques Montréal

Reservations: Recommended

Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly: Yes

Price: $$

Located in Old Montréal, Dandy is the chic little hideaway for a weekend brunch or lunch date. Chef and owner Michael Tozzi has introduced a stylish addition to Rue Saint-Jacques, as he has created the perfect casual-yet-refined establishment. Expect to eat classic comfort foods that feature a touch of Italian influence, a nod to his own roots. As for the space, the décor of Dandy was created in collaboration with Montréal design firm Blazys Gérard. A retro-modern style is peppered throughout to enhance the building’s historic character.

KHACHILIFE Editorial