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Reviews for Piment 2, Le Bremner, Jellyfish, and Notkins

Here's a roundup of this week's big reviews:

Piment 2

— The Old Montreal reboot of Le Piment Rouge falls flat for Lesley Chesterman this week. The Gazette critic, once a fan of Hazel and Chuck Mah's elegant, Peel street restaurant, can't bring herself to muster any enthusiasm for casual sequel Piment 2. Bad acoustics, a weak wine list, indifferent service, and a meal reminiscent of "’80s Szechuan food" results in a measly one star on four.

— Marie-Claude Lortie enjoys a better meal at Jellyfish, another new Old Montreal restaurant. "[R]ares sont les endroits qui réussissent à allier atmosphère de fête et qualité dans la cave et dans l'assiette. Jellyfish en est un," the La Presse critic asserts. The kitchen's crudo et charbon ethos may not reinvent the wheel, but the plates are "franchement bien faits." Lortie loves the makeover of the former Aziatik too, but warns that the room can get loud and boisterous.

— True to his name, a beaming Danny Smiles greets readers at the top of Jean-Philippe Tastet's Le Devoir review this week. At Le Bremner, Chuck Hughes's Old Montreal restaurant where Smiles serves as chef, "la fête se trouvait dans toutes les assiettes." Tastet enjoys crab from Sept-Îles, wild mushroom risotto, a perfectly cooked sea bream with salsa verde, and, consequently, can't find any room for Le Bremner's hefty desserts. Smiles offers a "cuisine élevée, dans un demi-sous-sol" no less, the critic extols.

— Over at Le Journal de Montréal, Notkins, the downtown bar and seafood spot, gets a look from Thierry Daraize more than a year and a half after it opened. The critic awards Notkins three stars on five, based largely on the restaurant's raison d'être: oysters. A fried half-fish scores, but several other non raw bar plates — calamari, lobster mac 'n' cheese, two desserts — disappoint. All told, a meal with "des hauts et des bas."

Notkins, bar à huîtres

1101, rue Bleury, Montreal, QC H2Z 1W1 (514) 866-1101 Visit Website

Piment 2

201 Saint-Jacques Ouest, Montreal, Quebec (514) 849-8668 Visit Website

Le Bremner

361 Rue Saint Paul Est, Ville-Marie, QC H2Y 1H2 (514) 544-0446 Visit Website

Jellyfish

626 Rue Marguerite d'Youville, Montreal, QC H2Y 2E4 (514) 303-0908

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