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Reviewer Says Accords Le Bistro Sucks No More

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But the same can’t be said for Brasserie Harricana

Accords le Bistro

It’s relatively common for food reviewers to revisit restaurants and either uphold past reviews, or determine that they’ve gone downhill. What’s less common is for them to eviscerate a restaurant but later go back and give them a second chance, and that’s what the Montreal Gazette’s Lesley Chesterman (commendably) does this week. Her original review of Accords le Bistro (the Accords Quartier des Spectacles) location was brutal, likening the wine to nail polish remover, amongst many other problems. To be fair, Accords did later shuffle chefs, and it seems to have helped. Chesterman “lapped up” generous chunks of miso-flavoured tuna, and praises duck confit-stuffed pappardelle. Three stars. [Montreal Gazette]

Le Journal de Montréal critic Thierry Daraize did not have such a good week — attempting to combine business with pleasure, he happens upon the previously well-reviewed Brasserie Harricana in Mile-Ex, where he can both do his critical duties and watch a Habs game. Luckily for Harricana, as a microbrewery, he approves of the beer, but pretty much burns the food: “Une cuisine réchauffée qui ne réchauffe pas vraiment.” He does have nice words about their deviled eggs, but laments reheated duck confit croquettes and seems pretty disgusted by a pan-fried calf’s liver dish as grey, overcooked and drowned in cream sauce and accompanied by “elastic” mashed potatoes. Two and a half stars. [Le Journal de Montréal]

At La Presse, Ariane Krol stops by exceedingly allergy-friendly Petite Patrie restaurant Zero8. It’s best known as the restaurant which serves food free of major allergens, including seafood, peanuts, gluten, dairy and eggs. It’s the sort of specialty place overlooked by critics — while it has had media attention, no reviewer has stopped by in the years it’s been open. Krol likens the menu to a “bistro de quartier”, and finds both smoked duck and bison flank steak dishes remarkable. But not all is well — the burger loses its zing in order to fit with the allergy-free ethos, and there are finesse issues, such as an undercooked poached pear dessert. Krol says it’s good, but she wouldn’t go across town for it. [La Presse]

And finally, Le Devoir’s Jean-Philippe Tastet throws back some Ti Punch at the hit Arcade Fire-Jen Agg coproduction Agrikol. He definitely enjoys the good vibes, and gives a special shout-out to well-curated music, but stops short of a rave. Tastet doesn’t go into as much detail on the food as usual, but seems to find it all satisfying with minor issues such as oxtail and cashew chicken being a touch overcooked. Three and a half stars. [Le Devoir]

Brasserie Harricana

95 Rue Jean-Talon Ouest, Villeray—Saint-Michel—Parc-Extension, QC H2R 2W8 (514) 303-3039 Visit Website

Accords - Le bistro

2, rue Sainte-Catherine Est, Montreal, QC H2K 1K4 (514) 508-2122 Visit Website