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Food Writers Name the Top Montreal Restaurant Standbys of 2018

The most reliablely rewarding restaurants of the year

Eggplant bharta at Pamplemousse, one of many choices for the best standby of the year
Pamplemousse/Facebook

As is tradition at Eater, we close the year with a survey of food critics, writers, bloggers, and people about town. This year we posed eight questions, from meal of the year, to top restaurant newcomers. All will be revealed by the time we turn off the lights at the end of 2018. Responses are unedited, except for grammar and translations, which are italicized.

Q: What were your top restaurant standbys of 2018?

Lesley Chesterman, Montreal Gazette dining critic:

This little known place called “My Kitchen”. Food’s really good and the wine markups are incredibly reasonable. And L’Express, because always L’Express.

Jean-Philippe Tastet, Le Devoir dining critic:

Antidote — there are a few excellent restaurants in the Eastern Townships. Antidote, with its chef Luc Vaillancourt, rates on the very top of the list.

Alma — Juan Lopez Luna cooks like a real chef; his better half, Lindsay Brennan, always finds magnificient bottles, mostly from Catalonia.

Bistro Braque — reservation mandatory. 30 seats, BYOB, coolest place on South Shore.

Boxermans — a new hot and creative chef, Grégoire Routy, a dazzling sommelière (Morgane Muszynski) and a very dynamic couple of owners on the floor, Jade Fortin-Côté and Eric Berlin.

Ian Harrison, Ricardo magazine; Eater Montreal founding editor:

Tsukuyomi for tonkotsu ramen, Falafel Yoni for sabich, and Mon Lapin for everything.

JP Karwacki, Eater Montreal and Cult MTL contributor:

McKiernan Luncheonette, Un Po’ di Più, Pizza Bouquet, and Pamplemousse. Each merited several repeat visits.

Mallory Frayn, Eater Montreal contributor:

I feel like I will say this every year for the rest of time — L’Express. I crave their football-sized steak tartare a few times a year and nothing else satisfies quite like it.

Iris Paradis-Gagnon, La Presse restaurant reporter and critic:

J’adore Le Filet et Montréal Plaza, où je sais que je ne serai jamais déçue, Paradis BBQ, pour le brunch décadent ou pour manger du bon poulet (ceci dit, Mon Petit Poulet lui fait désormais de la compétition!), Le Rouge Gorge, pour le vin et une bouchée dans une ambiance toujours agréable, Tacos Victor (sur Laurier) lorsque j’amène mon fils au resto (des frites dans un tacos, je dis oui!).

Cette année, j’ai aussi aimé fréquenter Mélisse (le menu du soir, méconnu, est vraiment délicieux), Pamplemousse (pizza sur pain naan, miam!), Moleskine (une des meilleures pizzas!), le Darling (toujours plein!), la luncheonnette McKiernan (ça vaut le détour!) et le Parasol, restaurant pop-up estival du Maïs qui s’améliore année après année.

I love Le Filet and Montréal Plaza, where I know I’ll never be disappointed; Paradis BBQ for a decadent brunch or good chicken (that said, Mon Petit Poulet is giving them some competition), Le Rouge Gorge for wine and a bite to eat in a charming atmosphere, Tacos Victor on Laurier when I take my son out to eat (fries in tacos — yes to that!).

This year, I also liked heading to Mélisse (the lesser-known night menu is really delicious), Pamplemousse (naan pizza, yum!), Moleskine (one of the best pizzas), Darling (always full!), McKiernan Luncheonette (it’s worth the trip), and Parasol, the summer pop-up behind Maïs that gets better every year.

Ève Dumas, La Presse restaurant reporter:

I always love going to Petit Alep with the kids: kebabs and fries for them, good wine and muhammara for mommy! Moleskine is another winner. Without kids, I often end up at Larrys, Diplomate or Marconi. And though I didn’t go back in 2018, I must say Candide is still doing some of the most creative, pertinent, noble cooking (and wine serving!) in all of Québec.

Mayssam Samaha, Will Travel For Food blog:

Vin Papillon, McKiernan, Pumpui, Gus, Comptoir Sainte Cécile, Candide, Le Petit Alep, Larrys. These (except for McKiernan and Candide) are all in my neighbourhood and the restaurants I frequent most often. I will, and have, trekked across town for a weekday lunch at McKiernan because it’s that delicious.

Élise Tastet, Tastet blog:

Casual: L’Express for classics and great wines, Parvis, Réservoir and Falafel Yoni for lunch, Bar Henrietta for wines, Sumac for chicken shawarma and fries, Pumpui for spicy comfort food, Hà for pho, Cafeden for chicken wings and papaya salad, Bottega for pizza, Tousignant for hangovers, Larrys for everything.

Fancy: Montréal Plaza, Le Serpent, Cadet, Maison Publique

Mélanie Boudreau, La Pique-Assiette blog:

Satay Brothers, Grumman ’78, Balsam Inn, Taverne Square Dominion, Vin Papillon, Jun I, Cadet, Candide, Café Ferreira, Kaza Maza, Loïc, Réservoir, Club Chasse et Pêche, Pastaga, and the SAT Food Lab during the summer.

Tommy Dion, Nightlife.ca critic and writer, blogger for Le Cuisinomane:

Restaurant 3734 in Saint-Henri. Delicious, affordable, good vibe. Comptoir Rhubarbe for lunch. Food is always spot on and a lovely wine selection. Elena and Gema for Neopolitan pizza.

Allison Van Rassel, food columnist at CBC/Radio-Canada Quebec City (note: these are Quebec City restaurants):

In no particular order and in all budgets: Honō Izakaya, ARVI, Battuto, L’Orygine, La Bonne Étoile, Buvette Scott, Diner Saint-Sauveur, Renard et la Chouette, Kraken Cru and Poulet Portugais.

Un Po' Di Piu

3 Rue de la Commune E, Montreal, QC H2Y 0B1 Visit Website

Bar Henrietta

115 Avenue Laurier Ouest, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2T 2N6 (514) 276-4282 Visit Website

Café Parvis

433 Rue Mayor, Ville-Marie, QC H3A 1N9 (514) 764-3589 Visit Website

Grumman'78

630 Rue de Courcelle, Le Sud-Ouest, QC H4C 3C5 (514) 290-5125 Visit Website

larrys

5201 Boulevard Saint-Laurent, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2T 1S4 (514) 503-1070 Visit Website

Moleskine

3412 Avenue du Parc, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2X 2H5 (514) 903-6939 Visit Website

Bar Pamplemousse

1579 Boulevard Saint-Laurent, Ville-Marie, QC H2X 2S9 (514) 543-1579 Visit Website

Le Serpent

257 Rue Prince, Ville-Marie, QC H3C 2N4 (514) 316-4666 Visit Website

Le Club Chasse et Pêche

423 Rue Saint-Claude, Ville-Marie, QC H2Y 3B6 (514) 861-1112 Visit Website

Tacos Victor (Mile End)

114 Avenue Laurier O, Montréal, QC H2T 2N7 Visit Website

CAFEDEN

6576 Boulevard Saint-Laurent, Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC H2S 3C6 (514) 419-1589 Visit Website

Paradis BBQ

4165 Rue Saint-Hubert, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2L 4A7 (514) 303-4165 Visit Website

Chez Tousignant

6956 Rue Drolet, Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC H2S 2T3 (438) 386-6368 Visit Website

Dominion Square Tavern

1243 Rue Metcalfe, Ville-Marie, QC H3B 2V5 (514) 564-5056 Visit Website

Le Diplomate

129 Rue Beaubien Ouest, Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC H2V 1C3 (514) 303-9727 Visit Website

Pastaga

6389 Boulevard Saint-Laurent, Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC H2S 3C3 (438) 381-6389 Visit Website

KazaMaza

4629 Avenue du Parc, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2V 4E4 (514) 844-6292 Visit Website

Comptoir Sainte-Cécile

232 Rue de Castelnau Est, Villeray—Saint-Michel—Parc-Extension, QC H2R 1P5 (514) 271-9888 Visit Website

Montréal Plaza

6230 Rue Saint-Hubert, Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC H2S 2M2 (514) 903-6230 Visit Website

Rouge Gorge

1234 Mont-Royal Est, Montreal, QC H2J 1Y1 (514) 303-3869 Visit Website

Darling

4328 Boulevard St-Laurent, Montréal, QC H2W 1Z3 (514) 379-1233

Le Petit Alep

191, rue Jean-Talon Est, Montréal, QC H2R 1S8 (514) 270-9361 Visit Website

Parasol Bar à Vin

5439 Boulevard Saint-Laurent, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2T 1S5 Visit Website

McKiernan Luncheonette

5524 Rue Saint-Patrick, Le Sud-Ouest, QC H4E 1A8 (514) 759-6677 Visit Website

Gus

38 Rue Beaubien Est, Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC H2S 1P8 (514) 722-2175 Visit Website

Falafel Yoni

54 Rue Saint Viateur Ouest, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2T 2K8 (514) 424-7767 Visit Website

Mon Petit Poulet

2343 Boulevard Rosemont, Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC H2G 1T8 (514) 543-4828 Visit Website

Boxermans

1041 Avenue Van Horne, Outremont, QC H2V 1J4 (514) 495-4000 Visit Website

Sumac

3618 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest, Le Sud-Ouest, QC H4C 1P5 (514) 935-1444 Visit Website

Le Filet

219 Avenue du Mont-Royal Ouest, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2T 2T2 (514) 360-6060 Visit Website

Ferreira Café

1446 Rue Peel, Ville-Marie, QC H3A 1S8 (514) 848-0988 Visit Website

Elena

5090 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest, Le Sud-Ouest, QC H4C 1T1 (514) 379-4883 Visit Website

Satay Brothers

3721 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest, Le Sud-Ouest, QC H4C 1P8 (514) 933-3507 Visit Website

Maison Publique

4720 Rue Marquette, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2J 3Y6 (514) 507-0555 Visit Website

SAT FoodLab

1201, boul. Saint-Laurent / 3e étage, Montréal, QC H2X 2S6 514 844 2033 Visit Website

Bottega

65 rue Saint-Zotique Est, Montreal, Quebec H2S 1K6 (514) 277-8104 Visit Website

GEMA

6827 Saint-Dominique, Montreal, Quebec H2S 3B1

Restaurant 3734

3734 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest, Montreal, Quebec H4C 1P7 514 303 0777 Visit Website

Comptoir Rhubarbe

5091 Rue De Lanaudière, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2J 3P9 (514) 903-3395 Visit Website

Antidote FoodLab

35 Rue Belvédère Nord, Mont-Bellevue, QC J1H 4A7 (819) 791-9117 Visit Website

Mon Lapin Bar à Vin

150 Rue Saint-Zotique E, Montréal, QC H2S 1K8

Balsam Inn

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

Restaurant Mélisse

719 Rue William, Ville-Marie, QC H3C 1N9 (514) 379-3794 Visit Website

L'Express

3927 Rue Saint-Denis, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2W 2M4 (514) 845-0673 Visit Website

Épicerie Pumpui

83 Rue Saint-Zotique Est, Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC H2S 1K7 (514) 379-3024 Visit Website

Marconi

45 Avenue Mozart Ouest, Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC H2S 1C1 (514) 490-0777 Visit Website

Loïc

5001 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest, Le Sud-Ouest, QC H4C 1T2 (514) 439-6806 Visit Website

Pizza Bouquet

45 Rue Beaubien Est, Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC H2S 1P8 (438) 320-6069 Visit Website

Réservoir

9 Avenue Duluth Est, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2W 1G7 (514) 849-7779 Visit Website

Alma

528 University Avenue Southeast, , MN 55414 (612) 379-4909 Visit Website

Restaurant Hà

243 Mont-Royal Ouest, Montreal, Quebec H2T 2T2 514 848 0336 Visit Website

Tsukuyomi

5207 Boulevard Saint-Laurent, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2T 1S4 (514) 273-8886 Visit Website

Cadet

1431 Boulevard Saint-Laurent, Ville-Marie, QC H2X 2S8 (514) 903-1631 Visit Website

Le Vin Papillon

2519 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest, Le Sud-Ouest, QC H3J 1N4 (514) 439-6494 Visit Website

Candide

551 Rue Saint-Martin, Le Sud-Ouest, QC H3J 2L6 (514) 447-2717 Visit Website

Jun I

156 Avenue Laurier Ouest, Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, QC H2T 2N7 (514) 276-5864 Visit Website

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