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Montreal’s Best Chinese May Be on the South Shore: Critic

While a revamped Mile End pub is a mixed bag

Le Hien D./Yelp

It’s reviews time, and first up, Cult Montreal critic JP Karwacki takes the Champlain Bridge to get to some solid Chinese food in Brossard. He’s at BYOB strip mall-dweller Papa Jackie, and finds a “stream” of Szechuan and Cantonese dishes, along with some Chinese-American counterparts. And mercifully, it doesn’t try to do everything, so decidedly non-Chinese options like pad thai and bibimbap are not on the menu, and it’s for the better. Skip the ubiquitous dishes like peanut butter dumplings, Karwacki suggests, and go for items like the perfectly sweet and spicy XO sauce scallops and squid, or Peking duck with crispy skin and “juicy chops of bird”. Dubbing it “the community’s best kept secret”, it’s undoubtedly worth the trip to the 450, he declares. [Cult MTL]

Sir Joseph/Facebook

At La Presse, Iris Gagnon-Paradis is on critic duties this week, and visits Mile End’s Sir Joseph, formerly Pub Sir Joseph, having recently ditched the “pub” marker, remaking itself into more of a restaurant-style venue, with café service by day. Under new management, the pubby aspect of the menu has been chopped back (gone are fish and chips, but a burger sticks around), and Gagnon-Paradis laments that the offerings are perhaps a little limited, with just four mains and three entrees. In any case, a red chicory-fennel salad with ricotta (above) is the biggest success, though it could do with a little more spice or acidity. Though it’s a mixed bag overall: a Jerusalem artichoke soup with parmesan tiles is too salty and “lacks finesse”, while a squash-Oka cheese is an outright disappointment. A bit better is a trout dish — although the fish itself isn’t so tasty, it’s saved by dashi broth and marinated mushrooms. For dessert, orange-chocolate brownies go a long way to saving Sir Joseph — while she seems on the fence, Gagnon-Paradis says she’d go back to see how the place evolves. [La Presse]

Tangia/Facebook

At the Gazette, critic Lesley Chesterman is at downtown Moroccan newcomer Tangia, which opened almost a year ago, and has racked up multiple positive reviews. Chesterman concurs: she was a fan of owner Dan Medalsy back when he operated Les Caprices de Nicolas in the same Drummond Street space, and while Tangia takes a much different direction, it earns a great reception. The creative cocktails (think Pimm’s, sumac, and Campari in one glass) and “spunky” service are a solid start, and appetizers keep it rolling, particularly a red pepper walnut salad (although Chesterman suggests that the hummus seems to be an “afterthought”). It’s a big build up, and the couscous mains don’t disappoint: the braised beef could be the most tender Chesterman has ever supped upon. Desserts are good too, but Chesterman is a little perplexed by the rather un-Moroccan lemon tart. A great three stars. [Montreal Gazette]

Le Clocher Penché/Facebook

Lastly, Le Devoir’s Quebec City critic Catherine Ferland is at café-turned-restaurant and local favourite Le Clocher Penché. It’s a little loud, but that’s Ferland’s main gripe. A mixed wine list and creative cocktails (like a Bloody Mary granita) get nods, and the dish of the day appears to be a duck breast with barley-mushroom stew, served in a cast iron dish. Four hearty, homey stars. [Le Devoir]

Pub Sir Joseph

4902 boul. Saint-Laurent, Montreal, Quebec H2T 1R5 (514) 564-7477 Visit Website

Papa Jackie

4745 Grande Allée, , QC J4Z 3G1 (450) 812-9354 Visit Website

Tangia

2072 Rue Drummond, Ville-Marie, QC H3G 1W9 (514) 282-9790 Visit Website

Le Clocher Penché

203 Rue Saint-Joseph Est, La Cité-Limoilou, QC G1K 3B1 (418) 640-0597 Visit Website

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