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report on Downtown Montreal Italian Restaurants

report on Downtown Montreal Italian Restaurants

Nov 11th, 2008, 10:39 AM
  #1  
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report on Downtown Montreal Italian Restaurants

We had a wondeful time in beautiful downtown Montreal this past weekend. Enjoyed the shopping, dining and The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (Andy Warhol Live).
We had dinner @ Bis, Capannina and Il Cortile. Of the 3, Il Cortile was our favorite and Bis our least favorite. Capannina was in the middle. At Bis I ordered seafood pasta w/ mussels, clams, lobster, shrimp and scallops for $44. The pasta was overcooked & so were the shrimp....very rubbery. The lobster was still in the shell but it was mostly shell!! When I told the waiter I was not thrilled to be cracking shells & digging for lobster he said "Next time tell us & we will shell it" Too late b/c there won't be a next time.
Il Cortile was excellent. The only thing that was odd was their practice of serving San Pellegrino as if it's complimentary but charging for it. I know that a lot of restaurants are doing this now. When you arrive @ your table there are 2 large bottles of San Pellegrino on the table. We wld have ordered San Pellegrino anyway but some people may not appreciate having to pay for something that appears to be complimentary.
OceanBreeze1 is offline  
Nov 15th, 2008, 06:51 AM
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Do you mean Bice ? instead of Bis ? I would tend to agree with you for food quality at Bice, they were closed for more than 6 months and reopened last may.

Il Cortile does not disappoint. Capannina is rather ordinary, but ok.

There is a small italian bistro at 1218 Stanley st, below ste Catherine st. that I discovered recently and their food
is amazing, it's called Bistro Marinara.

I'm glad you enjoyed your trip !!


mitchdesja is offline  
Nov 15th, 2008, 12:57 PM
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Mitch, thanks for the tip on Bistro Marinara.

No, I meant Bis: 1229 de la Montagne. It's located on the east side of de la Montagne south of Ste. Catherine next to Europea(where we had a rez for dinner but found the maitre de so unwelcoming & arrogant when we stopped by the day b/f our rez to "take a look" that we went next door to Bis, made a rez there & cancelled our rez @ Europea.)
OceanBreeze1 is offline  
Nov 17th, 2008, 02:12 AM
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thanks for the precision, I'll pass by and have a look soon.
mitchdesja is offline  
Nov 19th, 2008, 06:04 PM
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Ocean Breeze1: I have never seen this practice of putting bottles of San Pellegrino (or any other water, for that matter) on a table and tricking the customer in thinking that it is complimentary. I think it is an obnoxious practice. You mention that you have seen it before. Where? I'd be curious if other people have had that experience. You have seen the practice before, I have not, and could have easily been tricked into buying two expensive waters. I would not return to a restaurant that practiced that kind of deception on its customers, no matter how good the food is, unless I found that it was common practice at every restaurant in Montreal and that they were not an exception.
annetti is offline  
Nov 20th, 2008, 10:14 AM
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I see it in Florida. I have not seen this @ any other Montreal restaurant.
And, @ Il Cortile they replenish the San Pellegrino...we drank 2 bottles & a 3rd appeared!
OceanBreeze1 is offline  
Nov 21st, 2008, 03:11 AM
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I go to Il Cortile often and they do ask you if you are going to have the SP ; they assume that most people know it's not free. They bring a bowl of ice to the table to cool the water. I prefer flat bottled water, ( montreal tap water does not taste good), so they remove the SP and replace it with the bottle of flat water.

I really don't think they are trying to scam you; wine sales generate way more profit than water.




mitchdesja is offline  
Nov 21st, 2008, 11:07 AM
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Mitch, at Il Cortile they did not ask us if we wanted the SP. The bottles were already chilled. They brought a small bowl of ice & lemon( I think that adding ice to bottled water is contradictory b/c the ice cubes are usually made w/ tap water!!!) There were 2 large bottles of SP on the table when we arrived. One person in our party commented "That's a nice touch." He assumed it was complimentary. I knew better so I was not surprised when they added the 2 bottles of SP to our bill. However, the person who had assumed it was complimentary expressed similar sentiments to those of annetti! In fact, he said he would not go back to Il Cortile b/c he thought the practice was deceptive. So, I can see where annetti is coming from on this.
OceanBreeze1 is offline  
Nov 21st, 2008, 12:34 PM
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I actually just started seeing this trend in Montreal restaurants....I HATE it, and always refuse even if I am craving SP lol! It's just a ploy for some extra $$$. I hope that it doesn't catch on at every restaurant....


Layla
aucho53 is offline  
Nov 21st, 2008, 03:21 PM
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If putting bottles of water on the table at every restaurant was done and IF the customers know the "rules" that you are expected to pay for the water, then it is not a deception and I would have no problem, but the way it was described to me by Oceanbreeze1 and later elaborated upon when his friend felt deceived, I must say that this is NOT good business. It left Oceanbreeze1's friend feeling tricked.

About 4 or 5 years ago, I planned a restaurant outting for some old friends from work. There were about 12 of us or so and during the meal someone asked for some water. People were talking and laughing and no one paid too close attention when bottles of water arrived. The person who had requested the water later said they wanted tap water. Anyway, the bill arrived for the meal and people dug into their wallets and I started reading it. It was about $60 extra for that water, not including the tax and tip on it. I complained to the manager and they deducted the amount, after a long while and many of the group were already gone. The waitress met me at the parking valet with the returned cash. Although the money was returned, I have never gone back to this restaurant. It was a pleasant enough place and the food was good, but practices like that which may or may not be the server's idea are not good business. Also, the restaurant had promised us a private room and when we arrived they had given it to another party and gave us a screen to separate us, so they had been off to a bad start!
annetti is offline  
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