As summer arrives, the openings on Montreal’s restaurant and bar scenes aren’t cooling down at all. June, July, and August will bring new projects from established players like the owners of Impasto and bar Coldroom, as well as promising new ideas from no-waste, eco-friendly pubs, to a refined dessert restaurant. Here’s what you should look forward to.
Who: Michele Forgione and Stefano Faita (Impasto, Pizzeria Gema), and two of their staff from those restaurants, Benjamin Lemay Lemieux and Anthony DiIorio.
What: A casual trattoria —Brooklyn-style pizza will be a focal point (instead of the Neapolitan style at Gema), with a few pasta options, and natural wines. Bonus point of excitement: they’ll be getting into delivery for the first time.
When: Late June or July.
Where: 206 Jarry East in Villeray, in the former Pizzeria Filotio.
Who: Kevin Demers, of noted Old Montreal bar the Coldroom; creative chef Chanthy Yen (formerly of Mile End restaurant Fieldstone) will guide the dining program.
What: A very British pub and parlour with cask beer, cocktails inspired by the Victorian era, and staples like bangers and mash or English-style meat pies.
When: Later this month (June).
Where: In the former La Gargote location, 351 Place d’Youville in Old Montreal.
Who: Brothers Ari and Pablo Schor, with both bringing experience from Liverpool House (particularly Ari, a chef there for six years).
What: The brothers will bring elements of their Argentine upbringing to this bistro, but it’s not an Argentine restaurant, so don’t expect meaty parrilla-style grilled meats. Mediterranean influences (particularly from Spain and Italy) will also figure on a shuffling menu that will include pasta and seafood, all while showcasing Quebec produce.
When: Early July.
Where: 3900 Ethel in Verdun, in the Bistro Piquillo space.
Who: Evan Gubersky, Pablo Rojas, and Hakim Rahal — the same owners as tasting-menu-only restaurant Provisions just a couple doors over, as well as Adam Shiller (Tuck Shop), with sommelier Alexandra Guay playing a big role.
What: Boucherie Provisions isn’t new, of course, but it’s getting a reboot — the sandwich and meat counter remains, but a meaty wine bar is joining them, with charcuterie, sausages, and brochettes available in a 5 à 7 friendly menu. Wine, selected by Guay, will figure prominently, with lots of natural options.
When: Pretty much right now.
Where: 1142 Van Horne, in Outremont.
Who: A5 Hospitality. See also: numerous restaurants and bars including Jatoba, Kampai Garden, Nhau, and Flyjin.
What: The sudden spike in restaurant options in Laval continues — this project is being billed as a grill and seafood-type spot, headed by chefs Renaud Letellier (ex-Bouillon Bilk and Hoogan & Beaufort) and Pinou Thong (Park), with a sharp design from Zebulon Perron.
When: No date yet, but they’re promising summer.
Where: Place Bell in Laval, local 312.
Who: Restaurateurs Sandra Forcier and Jared Tuck, with pastry chef Valentin Rouyé (ex-Hoogan & Beaufort) on the food side.
What: A sleek restaurant focused on desserts — but don’t expect chocolate fondant cakes. It’ll be refined, delicate, and creative, and with plenty of wine (including sparkling and dessert options) to boot. For the less sweet-toothed, charcuterie options will be on offer.
When: Ratafia already did a pop-up opening for Grand Prix weekend, but will be permanently open in early July.
Where: 6778 St-Laurent, in the former Epoca space.
Who: Sommelier Nikolas Da Fonseca (ex-Petit Mousso), Marina de Figueiredo (ex-Candide), and Antonin Frenette-Laporte (brewpub Isle de Garde), and they’ll work with Isle de Garde, brewery Harricana, and wine importers Ward & Associates.
What: A wine bar focused on cold-climate wines (think central and Eastern Europe and some from Canada), with simple, seasonal small plates to share.
When: In the early part of summer.
Where: 1290 Beaubien E, taking over the space of former bar Brutus.
Who: Chef Anthony Bottazzi (Caffe Biancamano, with experience at Le Serpent and Maison Boulud, with co-owners Massimo Zuccheroso and Daniel Abbandonato.
What: Billed as an osteria Italiana, this new restaurant will focus on southern Italian cuisine, but a take that moves away from hyper-traditional takes, favouring seafood and vegetables, in a casual setting.
When: Likely the first half of summer.
Where: 6672 Papineau on the edge of Petite-Patrie (at St-Zotique).
Who: Jeremiah Bullied, chef and former owner of Mile End Spanish restaurant La Sala Rossa.
What: An eco-friendly pub — it’ll have its own greenhouse, with comforting yet creative pub-style food. On the pub side, Poincaré will focus on craft brews, low-intervention wines, and a few cocktails. For food, seasonal vegetables will be cured, pickled, fermented to make them available outside of their seasonal periods. Oh it’ll even have a rooftop terrasse (but most likely not until next summer).
When: Early July.
Where: 1071 St-Laurent (second floor), in Chinatown.
Who: Dominic St-Laurent, who owned now-closed restaurant Le Ballpark (in the same location), and new owner Cédric Charron.
What: An all-vegan ramen restaurant, with tofu and noodles to be made in-house, as well as sake and house kombucha.
When: In July.
Where: 6660 Clark, in Little Italy, corner St-Zotique.
Who: A group of north-side locals with backgrounds in the music, arts, and culture scenes.
What: Montreal’s first no-waste pub: it’ll have no paper napkins or plastic straws, drinks will only feature edible garnishes, and take-out will be in mason jars. The aim is that the only “waste” will be compostable organic matter — and even the meal portions will be variable to cut back on food waste.
When: It was slated for spring but still seems to be in the works for summer.
Where: 6839 St-Hubert, in Petite-Patrie.
- After blasting back onto the island with a downtown location, Krispy Kreme is planning to open in Côte-des-Neiges.
- Korean food magnates Mon Ami will open an all-you-can-eat barbecue restaurant downtown, right by Concordia.
- Sushi restaurant Ryu is plotting a location in Griffintown — it’ll be in the base of condo development Le Se7t.