Montreal Restaurants

Montréal has one of Canada's most cosmopolitan restaurant scenes with trendy new eateries popping up regularly, their menus heavily influenced by flavors from around the globe, and often with an added touch of French flair.

Montréal's top dining destinations are plentiful, especially as young chefs move to hip destinations in Mile End and the Plateau areas to open new restaurants. Downtown, convenient to many hotels, finds most of its restaurants clustered between rues Guy and Peel and on the side streets that run between boulevard René-Lévesque and rue Sherbrooke. Rue St-Denis and boulevard St-Laurent, between rues Sherbrooke and Jean Talon, have long been, and continue to be, convenient and fashionable areas, with everything from sandwich shops to high-price gourmet shrines. Old Montréal, too, has a collection of well-regarded restaurants, most of them clustered on rue St-Paul, avenue McGill, and place Jacques-Cartier.

You can usually order à la carte, but make sure to look for the table d'hôte, a two- to four-course package deal. It's often more economical, offers interesting specials, and may also take less time to prepare. For a splurge, consider a menu dégustation, a five- to seven-course tasting menu that generally includes soup, salad, fish, sherbet (to cleanse the palate), a meat dish, dessert, and coffee or tea. A menu dégustation for two, along with a good bottle of wine, will cost around C$250.

Most restaurants will have an English menu or, at the very least, a bilingual menu—but some might only be in French. If you don't understand what a dish is, don't be too shy to ask; a good server will be happy to explain. If you feel brave enough to order in French, remember that in Montréal an entrée is an appetizer, and what Americans call an entrée is a plat principal, or main dish.

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  • 1. Impasto

    $$$ | Little Italy | Italian

    This unpretentious, industrial-chic Little Italy restaurant has garnered a great reputation, thanks in part to its celebrity-chef owners, Stefano...Read More

  • 2. Le Serpent

    $$$ | Old Montréal | Italian

    The expertise and irreproachable service at Le Serpent truly make it an essential stop on any Montreal foodie itinerary. The industrial-looking...Read More

  • 3. Le Vin Papillon

    $$ | Verdun | Italian

    First and foremost a wine bar, this tiny 30-seat spot also dishes out delicious vegetable-centric, market-based cuisine. The cuisine features...Read More

  • 4. Da Emma

    $$$ | Old Montréal | Italian

    The cellar of what used to be Montréal's first women's prison hardly sounds like the ideal setting for an Italian eatery, but grandma Emma's...Read More

  • 5. Nora Gray

    $$$ | Verdun | Italian

    The crowd that fills this casual and lively spot nightly is hip, and the simple, modern Southern Italian comfort food and impeccable service...Read More

  • 6. Pizzeria 900

    $$ | Outremont | Italian

    No one does pizza quite like these pizzaiolos; they are, after all, legally certified by the Associazione of Vera Pizza Napolitana in Italy...Read More

  • 7. Globe

    $$$ | The Plateau | Italian

    Given new life by a new kitchen crew, Globe is no longer just a place to rubberneck celebrities and ogle model-slash-waitresses. Now, happy...Read More

  • 8. Osteria Venti

    $$$ | Old Montréal | Italian

    Authentic regional Italian cuisine comes to life at this restaurant, housed in a rustic 200-year-old building on a cobblestone street in historic...Read More

  • 9. Il Mulino

    Little Italy | Italian

    No longer "rustic," Il Mulino has a fresh decor that matches its kitchen's uncompromising standards. This upscale, family-run trattoria in Little...Read More

  • 10. Macaroni Bar

    $$ | The Plateau | Italian

    Top Chef Canada contender chef Sergio Mattoscio has built up a following and this, his restaurant–supper club, draws fans and foodies alike...Read More

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