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Sarah Musgrave Thinks Balsam Inn is Good and Possibly Even Great

The latest from the Gazette's casual restaurant critic.

More good food Downtown
More good food Downtown
Balsam Inn

The new sister restaurant to Dominion Square Tavern is proof that Downtown Montreal is no longer a food desert, writes Sarah Musgrave in a behind the paywall review this week: "Certainly with the addition of the Balsam Inn, the question of where to eat before or after you go to a movie is even less of a headscratcher than it used to be."

"Smaller, darker and cozier, Balsam Inn feels a little less business and a little more bar. While it’s on the edge of fancy, its mandate is affordable and approachable — you can easily pop in here for a drink and a snack, or a full meal, depending on your needs. The selection of small plates for sharing is based, as co-owner Alexandre Baldwin explained it, on how he and chef Eric Dupuis like to eat and drink themselves."

The drinks program is predictably strong and starters like caponata and a galette au four with goat's cheese soar. A smoked herring plate makes "a satisfying salad" and an order of tagliatelle cacciatore, while not huge, is enjoyable. Musgrave's verdict: "Cozy on all fronts, Balsam Inn is the perfect spot for a winter’s eve — or day."

Balsam Inn

1237 Rue Metcalfe, Ville-Marie, QC H3B 2V5 (514) 507-9207 Visit Website

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