I have had the privilege to live in Montreal for five weeks for a French immersion program (don’t even get me started on how much I LOVE languages…I could rant about that forever!) and during those five weeks, I was on a mission to explore various restaurants, wine bars, book stores and cafés (I am a foodie, so don’t be surprised by my list that mostly involves eating and drinking wine 😉 ). Montreal has a special place in my heart because of it is cultural diversity and its beautiful buildings and surroundings. Montreal has a European vibe to it that is mixed with the Canadian vibe, which makes it such a unique city. Will I ever move to Montreal? That would be such a pleasant surprise from the Universe! The foodie in me (ahem) will share my favorite restaurants in Montreal that I recommend you absolutely have to try…here we go:
- My favorite Café: Tommy Café. It is located in Old Montreal and it is so so so elegant! It is located in the British Empire building so the architecture has a historical yet, somehow, modern vibe! I had a mocha there ( my favorite drink, duh!) and it was delicious and well-crafted! If you go to Montreal, please, do yourself a favor, grab a book, a magazine, your journal ( or your friend, significant other, family member) and go to Tommy! You will have an amazing time.
- My Favourite Wine Bar: Pullman. Oh, God, Pullman…where do I start? This wine bar is a hidden gem in Montreal! From the moment you walk in the door, you are greeted warmly by friendly staff who are eager to make sure you have an amazing time there! When you are seated, a professionally trained (and very friendly!) sommelier would be more than happy to help you choose the right wine for you. Pullman has a sophisticated atmosphere…and it is also romantic, they have tiny candles on each table! Pullman is perfect for a date or just a night out with friends. And oh, their tapas! Yum 🙂 and their desserts…Yum Yum Yum. Be prepared to spend some money there, because it is definitely not cheap, however, you will have an unforgettable experience! Ok seriously, I have to stop talking about Pullman…
- My Favourite Bagel: Fairmount Bagel. My mouth is watering just thinking about those bagels! First of all, if you go to Montreal, you gotta have Montreal bagels! Seriously, they are famous for a reason! ( You also gotta have poutine, that is discussed in another point). When you walk by Fairmount bagels, your nose will catch the delicious fresh bagels smell…when you walk in, there will be a line (because you know…MONTREAL BAGELS ARE BOMB!). Keep in mind, this is not a restaurant so you will order the bagels and take them to go. I always got the sesame bagels with butter …THEY ARE THE BEST! They are soft and warm and literally melt in your mouth. I personally always ended up eating the bagel (or devouring them is a more accurate description) on my way home because I couldn’t wait till I got home to eat those bagels.
- My favorite poutine: La Banquise. Again, when you go to Montreal, you have to have poutine AND you have to eat it at La Banquise. Be prepared: THERE WILL BE A LINE!! (That is a time where you can exercise your patience and chat with your friends in line…) And again, the line exists for a reason. The reason is literally this is the best poutine you will ever have in your entire life and once you have poutine there, you won’t be able to enjoy it anywhere else. They also have an amazing beer selection to pair with that poutine…oh mama! I would advise you to start with a regular-sized poutine or share the large one with someone because the large is extremely difficult to finish by yourself unless you haven’t eaten for a very long time.One last comment: Make sure you give yourself some time to nap after you eat that poutine. YOU WILL NEED IT! HAVE FUN! 😉
- My favorite vegan restaurant: ChuChai. Since Montreal is like heaven for foodies, it shouldn’t be a surprise that there are MANY AWESOME VEGAN/VEGETARIAN RESTAURANTS. ChuChai was an extraordinary surprise because it exceeded my expectations in every way. ChuChai specializes in Thai dishes made with mock meats and mock seafood. It also has a great selection of cocktails and no, not your regular cocktails (forget about Sex on the Beach and Rum and Coke), it has some awesome unique cocktails that you probably haven’t tried before. Whether you are vegan/vegetarian or a carnivore, you will have a spectacular time at ChuChai and you will eat very exquisite healthy food!
- My favorite Bakery: Première Moisson. What foodie doesn’t appreciate good pastries or French bread? (Definitely, not me!). This place is SO GOOD! It has the biggest selection of various French bread and pastries that I have ever seen…I am talking Croissants, cheesecakes, chocolate cakes, birthday cakes, macaroons…(Okay, I will stop here) They also have sandwiches for breakfast and lunch! and oh, their coffee…They make amazing mochas! They also sell products like different cheeses and jams. They also have some ready-to-go wrapped gifts that would be perfect for a loved one who enjoys bakeries and their products! It also has a beautiful patio where you can grab your coffee and meal and/or dessert and sit down and relax! 🙂
- My favorite breakfast/brunch restaurant/Café: Brûlerie Urbaine. ( As a challenge, you have to try saying this correctly en Français 😉 ). Okay, I actually lost count of how many times I went to this place. They roast their own coffee on-site! so if you are a coffee lover like me, you have to go there! They also have an amazing breakfast/brunch menu AND sandwiches and pastries. Seriously, What else could I possibly ask for? Also, the staff are very friendly, professional and more importantly, patient! 🙂 It was always a delight going there. Side Note: I would actually move to Montreal just for Brûlerie Urbaine ( judge me all you want, it is THAT GOOD!)
- My Favorite Crêperie: Juliette et Chocolat. They have, hands down, the most delicious crepes I have ever had. It is also a chocolate shop, you could only imagine the type of creativity and effort that is put into their products! Also, they make their mochas with real chocolate (Again, my mouth is watering just thinking about those mochas and crepes..) They also have savory crepes, if you are not a fan of the sweet ones. If you like crepes, you have to go there! 🙂
P.S: The image above is of the mocha I had at Juliette et Chocolat! 😉 and yes the thing around the mug is melted chocolate so when you take a sip from the mocha, you taste the chocolate as well!
I hope you get the chance to visit Montreal so you can try many, if not all, of the above places! If you have already been to any of these restaurants, I would love to hear about your experiences in the comments!