Gone are the days when Montrealers could joke about the idea of heading to Laval in search of a great meal. A growing number of first-time restaurant owners and established restaurant groups are moving north of the Island, joining the long-established family-run businesses serving everything from Italian favourites to regional Quebecois specialties. Here are the best picks of the bunch.Read More
The 16 Best Bites in Laval
From heaping plates of Armenian delicacies to ambitious plates of seasonal food — there really is something for everyone in Laval
Oregon Bar à vin
The hottest Laval opening in 2017 was this wine bar from five restaurateurs who call the suburb home. Located in a strip mall, the restaurant’s menu features inventive seasonal small plates worth a trip to the end of the metro line. Plus, there’s sommelier Simon Boudreault’s wine list, which leans just as natural and biodynamic as any downtown spot worth its fleur de sel.
Restaurant Vien Dong
This family-run restaurant — open since 2002 — bills itself as a healthy locale for fresh Vietnamese, Thai, and Chinese specialties. Dishes worth leaving Montreal for include the steamed savoury rice cakes with shrimp and the flank steak served on a sizzling platter with sweet potato fries and a sunny-side-up egg. Many of Vien Dong’s dishes are also gluten-free or vegetarian.
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The downtown Mexican restaurant’s first off-island location brings its much-loved al pastor, baja cod, and crispy cauliflower tacos to Chomedey. The rest of its fusion menu (think cornbread and Mexican General Tso’s chicken ) and large tequila list also made the jump.
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This Laval offshoot of the renowned NDG oyster bar and seafood restaurant is the island’s best bet for seafood towers, lobster rolls, surf and turf, and New England-style chowder. The main difference from the original Monkland location is the addition of a kids’ menu and a bit more seating. There’s also a separate outdoor ordering and pickup area reminiscent of the company’s catering food truck — perfect for Laval parking lot tailgating.
La bête à pain (Laval)
The lauded Ahuntsic bakery from chef-owner Marc-André Royal (Le St-Urbain) has spread both south and north in recent years, bringing its exceptional bread and pastries first to Griffintown and then to Laval. The expanded space allows for more leisurely lunches, brunches, and afternoon snacks served with coffee or natural wine.
Fabrizio Covone’s Neopolitan pizzeria in Little Italy is credited with starting the 90-second wood-burning pizza oven craze in Montreal when it opened back in 2006. This upscale-casual Laval outlet is an equally smart business venture, catering to the area’s large Italian community and its many Italophiles. The dough comes topped with officially Neopolitan-sanctioned toppings, including San Marzano tomatoes and Italian mozzarella for its menu of red and white pies.
This downtown chain brings upscale vegetarian cuisine to the Centropolis with king oyster scallops, beet tartare, tacos, and burgers. The restaurant features the same organic wine and beer list, smoothies, cocktails, brunch options, and Instagrammable blue lavender lattes with pea flower powder — just with better parking.
Café Ricardo Laval
The second location of the St-Lambert daytime-only café brings Quebecois celebrity chef Ricardo Larrivée’s crowd-pleasing recipes to Laval. From inventive cakes (think peach and chamomile cake and a salted caramel mille feuille pot) to spicy corn ribs and a shish taouk-style chicken burger , the café serves well-styled versions of the latest comfort food trends. Drinks include global wines, local beers and ciders, and cocktails mixed with Quebec spirits.
It’s a whole vibe at this 14,000-square-foot restaurant from The Lucky Bell Group (Le Blossom, Kamehameha Snack-Bar, Le Golden Dragon, Le Red Tiger) where the swanky aesthetic is as much of a draw as the sophisticated Asian fusion menu; don’t miss the inventive cocktails.
It’s worth the trip (and potentially a wait) to this Armenian bistro serving elegantly plated traditional meals for lunch, dinner, and weekend brunch. The space is modern and bright and the strip mall location makes parking a cinch.
Gatto Matto Laval
Go for the charming, modern decor (think high ceilings, floral wallpaper, pastel banquets and tons of light), but stay for the antipasti, pasta, pizza, and grilled fish and meat. The cocktail list features a variety of caesars, sangrias, and sprtizs alongside custom creations.
Westwood Bar & Grill
A5 Hospitality, Groupe Midway, and Groupe Harden runthis California-influenced restaurant in Place Bell. Designed by Zebulon Perrón, Westwood is one of the sleekest spots north of the Prairies River — think potted plants, wood, and leopard print on banquettes that curve throughout the space. Executive Chef Carlos Gomes Garcia’s Asian-French menu includes a variety of tartares, ceviches and carpaccios followed by salads, grilled fish and meat items, plus vegetable-focused sides. There’s indoor valet parking, which is equally important for many in this traffic-crunched area of Laval.
Don’t let the strip mall location fool you: Restaurant Rouby is well-worth a visit. In an already shawarma-heavy area, the menu at this family-owned Lebanese and Armenian restaurant stands out. They offer classics like hummus, fattoush, and stuffed grape leaves, alongside a not-to-be-missed Armenian Aleppi Mortadella made with wine and lean ground beef and served thinly sliced, plus a pressed/cured beef basturma.
It’s casual and to the point at this old-school Greek counter-serve stop, where the daily specials appear on display when you enter. Expect a traditional menu of dips, salads, gyros, souvlaki, and a variety of grilled meats. Pro tip: bring friends and order it all — prices are low and servings are generous.
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Restaurant Le Mitoyen
Local, seasonal cuisine is the main event at this cozy destination in Laval with a more than 40-year history. You can order the tasting menu ($115 without wine pairings, $160 with), or choose to order a la carte, but either way, expect lots of game meat options as well as fish. The menu include sa deep international wine list and a concise offering of decadent desserts.
Giant portions of fried zucchini, grilled octopus, avgolemono lemon and egg soup and lamb chops (which you can order by the kilo and come with just the right amount of char) are the draw at this family-run establishment in Chomedey. Regulars know to save room for dessert, too — the loukoumades are made to order.
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