The team behind upscale Old Montreal restaurant Jellyfish Crudo + Charbon didn’t go far for their latest, more casual venture: Pubjelly. The wine and oyster bar, focused on apéro and late-night drinking and snacking, opens next week — and just next door.
“Jellyfish is mostly high-end. It’s a destination. But with Pubjelly, we wanted something that anyone can just go to ... We wanted to bring something cool to the area, and not just build another Jellyfish,” chef Mathieu Masson-Duceppe told Eater in September, while the project was still under development.
Now, Pubjelly, which held a soft opening in December (cut short by Quebec’s dining room shutdown), is ready to launch, with Masson-Duceppe joined by partners Francis Rodrigue (Madame Thai, Pizzeria Giulietta), Roberto Pesut (Stellina, Fiorellino, Porchetta), and Charles Mary — all from Jellyfish.
The menu, from Masson-Duceppe (who recently also collaborated on Canada’s first Club Med, in Charlevoix), includes small, vegetable-heavy plates, such as leek confit with artichoke purée, mortadella, and bread crumbs, or burrata on a bed of avocado, delicata squash, pistachios, and basil. For oysters, there’s raw or cooked, with one roasted with beef marrow and a lemon, white miso butter, and another made Carbonora style.
Then, there’s Pubjelly’s Roman al taglio pizza — a style that’s gained considerable traction in the city over the past year (see: Segreta in Park-Ex, A Posto in the Latin Quarter, and Ugo in Cité du Multimédia). Pubjelly’s version comes in full or half sizes, with a white or red base, and with a variety of toppings: Think potato, pancetta, gorgonzola, onions, and rosemary; or smoked caciocavallo cheese, ‘nduja, buffalo mozzarella, and roasted broccoli.
Pizza was a natural route for the chef who’d inherited a wood-fire oven with the space — it previously housed an outpost of La Pizzaiolle. As for the locale itself, it’s a 70-seater, filled with dark, pub-like woods, leather seating, and suspended lighting — all nestled into an over-century-old red-brick structure, originally built for a railway station.
Pubjelly opens on Tuesday, February 8 at 5 p.m., at 600 Rue Marguerite-D’Youville.