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Montreal a la Carte


A carefully composed plate at Les 400 Coups.

Visited Montreal twice in April (once on vacation and once for the GMIC Sustainability Conference, at the Hilton Montreal Bonaventure), and had some uneven eating.

Highlight of both visits was Les 400 Coups, an 18-month-old restaurant on the eastern edge of Old Montreal.

Knocked out by a starter of blood-sausage croquette, with silky celery-root puree, marinated apples and al dente Brussels-sprouts leaves; a main of sweetbreads with maitake mushrooms in a raisin-cumin sauce; and, at dessert, a sophisticated layering of apples, pistachios, olive oil and white-chocolate yogurt.

Also enjoyed the lamb sausage, with sautéed peppers and onions, at cheap-and-cheerful brasserie-t, adjacent to Place des Arts. Puzzled, though, by the duck rillettes, served sliced, terrine-style, to the detriment of its texture.

Less impressed with Decca 77, near the Bell Centre. Overcooked foie gras was almost a puddle (albeit a luxuriant one), and tuna main was ho-hum. Full marks, though, for the chocolate dessert extravaganza.

And over at chalet-chic-style L’Orignal, in Old Montreal, the bison osso bucco was dry…

Ventured, too, to the venerable Beaver Club, in the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth, where I enjoyed the oysters with sabayon; the black cod; and, especially, the lime soufflé with tequila ice, one of the best desserts I’ve had in Montreal, ever.

And the famous banana bread, brought with the bread basket (and again, pre-dessert, on request), was a nice touch…as was the complimentary, house-made, chocolate-covered orange peel.

 



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