January 7, 2014 ─ For the traditionally romantic
Nestled along Old Montréal’s historic Place Jacques-Cartier, Chez Queux sets the mood with a lush interior of woodwork, chandeliers, stone chimneys and sparkling silverware. A classic French menu echoes its elegant setting, and treats taste buds to time-honoured classics, such as gâteau de foie blond, Châteaubriand and company.
Tucked away in the presbytery of downtown’s beautiful Christ Church Cathedral, the Apollo Restaurant’s soaring architecture sets the stage for an exemplary culinary experience. The adage that “all good things come in threes” certainly applies in this elegantly relaxed bistro where diners may revel in culinary delights as foie gras, sea bream or even the catch of the day, prepared in three different ways!
For romantic roads less traveled
Hot on the heels of Montréal’s top contemporary restaurants, the up-and-coming Van Horne (on Van Horne Avenue in Outremont, of course) was ranked sixth among the top 10 Best New Canadian Restaurants according to enRoute Magazine in 2011. A totem pole, bold modern art on the walls along with Roy Lichtenstein’s paper plates and the original doors from the Iran Pavilion at Expo ’67 provide an art gallery-esque setting in which to enjoy the culinary finesse of Chef Eloi Dion, who proposes a concise, dynamic menu of market-fresh cuisine that features but four starters, four main dishes - one meat, two fish and one vegetarian – and three desserts. Add in a stellar wine list featuring many private imports and you’ve got a restaurant that’s soon to become a hallmark among Montréal foodies.
Fresh on Montréal’s foodie scene is Le Grain de Sel, a beautiful, laid-back little bistro nestled in the up-and-coming Hochelaga-Maisonneuve district. With seasonal, market-fresh cuisine, its ever-changing menu is unusual and delicious, with hints of exotic spice masterfully intertwined with local produce for scrumptious results. The atmosphere is lively, but not overwhelming – just right to share a quiet tête à tête – and the décor, with its hardwood floors, white linen and strategically-placed mirrors, is as simple and unpretentious as the fare. A varied, yet responsibly-priced wine selection featuring private imports paired with clever recommendations completes this epicurean experience that is sure to have you coming back again and again.