Italian delis are criminally underrated. Where else can you get a sandwich, stand at a counter and enjoy an espresso and overhear bickering of how well your favorite European football team is doing? Montreal’s Italian community is vast and stretches from one end of the city to the other. Here are some awesome delis to get your fix of everything Italian…
There’s no talking about Italian delis without thinking Little Italy. A great spot to pick up freshly made breads, pastries and prepared food is Pizza Motta. Located right in the Jean Talon market, this spot is the hub of all Italian goodies.
Lined from wall to wall, their deli cases features everything from rectangular roman style pizza sold by weight, to fried calamari, aranchini to cold salads and hot prepared meals. Masterfully prepared by bellowing nonnas behind the counter busting your chops for taking too long to order.
You can find Cavallaro Fine Foods in the Westmount neighborhood of Montreal, representing all things Italian for over 20 years. Purveyor of higher end Italian products, you’ll find an extremely vast selection of oils and vinegars. Owner Tony Russo explains that his passion for food started off when he was a giovane of 15, washing dishes in a restaurant when he was called up to the line to help prepare food for a dinner service. This inspired his love for food over the years and explains the great variety of hot meals available in his store; featuring osso bucco, to a Sunday roast available on most days and not exclusive to the weekend.
Pasta Casareccia is another spot that shouldn’t be missed when looking for a great Italian deli. Located in the west end of town, Pasta Casareccia is deli and restaurant, specializing in homemade pastas and hard to find Italian specialty items. From Italian coffee percolators to awesome prepared meals ready to cook. They’ve also got your dinner parties taken care of too – their catering menu will get you out of a jam quickly!
One of my personal favorites is Deli La Trattoria in Kirkland. This spot is the most legit out in the suburbs and must be your first stop whether you’re coming in or leaving the island of Montreal. Their modest offerings of Italian pastries such as lobster tails, canoli and zeppoles (in time for St-Joseph’s day) are limited, but guaranteed fresh and are homemade. Italian specialty products to be discovered as well as their own bottled sauces. Do not miss their hot meals and famous sandwiches – get the sausage sandwich with their signature chili sauce.
Pizza Motta, 303 Avenue Mozart East, (514) 270-5952
Cavallaro Fine Foods, 4865 Sherbrooke West, (514) 484-080
Pasta Casareccia, 5849 Sherbrooke West, (514) 483-1588
Deli La Trattoria, 19787 Chemin Ste-Marie, (514) 694-0595