Where to Eat around Le Westin Montreal

Montreal is a truly cosmopolitan city, with a foodie scene that makes it a gourmand’s dream destination. Culturally rich, ethnically diverse, and architecturally beautiful, Montreal is a city where you’ll never stop discovering new reasons to return.

84 Rue Saint Paul Est, Montréal, QC H2Y 1G6, Canada
Let’s start with this. The province of Quebec produces over 80 percent of the world supply of maple syrup. You’re welcome. Which means we know our stuff; we know precisely how to use it, with what ingredients and in what quantities (that is, with everything and as much as possible). The Maple Delights shop is definitely for tourists to spend money, but that doesn’t mean that money won’t be well invested. Visitors can either opt for an on-the-spot treat, like ice cream, macarons (yes, you read that correctly), and even maple beignets, a traditional Québécois dish. Others can load up on take-away products like maple butter, all kinds of spreads, teas, and of course syrup. All of these can be gifts for your loved ones back home, or gifts for yourself—for absolutely no reason other than you being fabulous and in Montreal.
355 Place Royale
This is the closest you’ll get to France without actually going. The shop of famed pâtissier Christian Faure recently opened in the heart of Old Montreal, on the site of the first public market, and it’s already become a must-do. A look at the picture above might explain the instant popularity. The title of this highlight is a quote from Antoine-de-Saint-Exupéry—and a longtime motto of the talented pâtissier. It represents his brand quite perfectly. Biting into one of his creations is indeed nothing short of a dreamy experience. The shop also offers pastry courses so you can learn to replicate the dream creations yourself.
351 Rue Saint-Paul O, Montréal, QC H2Y 2A7, Canada
This perennially popular bakery and sandwich spot can feel somewhat out of place. With its cozy atmosphere in a plant-filled space, and its menu of warm panini, delicious sandwiches on artisanal breads, generous salads, and perfectly executed pastries, it is the sort of restaurant you’d expect to find in one of Montréal’s cooler neighborhoods. Instead, it’s in the heart of Old Montréal. That is a definite plus for travelers visiting the city’s historic sights. It also means, however, that there is a lunch-hour rush when nearby office workers vie for tables. If you can plan on an early or late lunch—you’re on vacation, after all—you can avoid the worst of the crowd. Olive et Gourmando is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., so if you are looking for a place for dinner, the same owners are behind the new Foxy (in the Griffintown neighborhood), which is quickly proving as popular as their first restaurant.
138 Atwater Avenue
The whole province of Quebec takes its agriculture very seriously, and consequently you can find some incredibly fresh, tasty products. The vendors at Atwater Market are passionate about what they sell, and they are more than happy to talk all things food. From sweet and tangy strawberries to ice wines, cheeses, and maple creations, the Atwater Market leaves very few unimpressed. A true staple of the Montreal culinary scene, this is a must for all foodies.
74 Avenue Fairmount O, Montréal, QC H2T 2M2, Canada
New York City vs Montreal. Oh, the debate. In the ongoing Great War of the Bagels between the two cities, Montreal has always been the favorite contender, both among the proud locals and the tourists. Let’s be honest here—Montreal wins, and there is no such thing as better bagels than Montreal bagels. If you agree with the premise of this highlight, then you might want to add this to your next Montreal trip: the Fairmount Bagel Bakery in the Mile End area. Founded by Jewish immigrant Isadore Shlafman in 1919, the knowledge was transmitted from generation to generation, and the family still uses the same methods even today. Everything is done by hand, and with love! It’s very rewarding, as a consumer, to buy things locally and encourage an almost-century-old family-owned business. And in this case, it’s double the reward: good conscience, and full stomach. What’s not to like?
3895 Boul St-Laurent, Montréal, QC H2W 1X9, Canada
While New York has its pastrami, Montréal is the home of smoked meat. (The preparation of both is similar: A beef brisket is cured in spices for a week, then hot-smoked and finally boiled before being served.) Though others may question the claim, Schwartz’s boasts that it is the original home of smoked meat, serving it since 1928. Regardless of who was first, Schwartz’s is the most popular smoked-meat option in town. Order a sandwich, on rye with only yellow mustard to accompany the meat, and you’ll soon understand why the citizens of Montréal are so passionate about the dish.
7070 Avenue Henri-Julien, Montréal, QC H2S 3S3, Canada
After Toronto, Montréal is the Canadian city with the largest population of residents of Italian descent. For more than a century, the community has been centered in one of the city’s most charming neighborhoods, Little Italy. The way to the heart of this neighborhood is arguably through its stomach or, rather, the Jean-Talon Market, where residents have come to buy produce and stock their pantries since 1933. Even if you aren’t shopping for fresh vegetables or fruits, it’s a good place to come to sample Québecois products and buy gifts like local jams, jellies, and maple products to take back home.
273 Rue Saint Paul Est, Montréal, QC H2Y 1H2, Canada
Montreal doesn’t lack for atmospheric restaurants in which both the decor and the aromas entice anyone who walks by. But my favorite of them all is, without a doubt, the Usine de Spaghetti, nestled on the quiet side of the touristy St. Paul Street in Old Montreal. What makes this place so special? A free salad bar, an unlimited bread supply, an expertly curated wine cellar, a menu that won’t break the bank but that rivals even the best Italian eatery, and a historic decor. (Brownie points for naming each dish after a Montreal fact!) Notice the ceiling-high wine racks and the intimate, dark wooden and candlelit back room where Dickens supposedly wrote parts of A Tale of Two Cities. I highly recommend the Jean Drapeau dish with a crisp wine. But mostly, I recommend staying here for a little while, to take in the romantic, inspiring atmosphere that will take you back centuries.
2491 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest, Montréal, QC H3J 1N6, Canada
This Little Burgundy mainstay is the headquarters of chefs David McMillan and Frédéric Morin, the acclaimed and enterprising minds behind an evolving blackboard menu that has been known to feature smoked meat croquettes, house-cured ham with truffles, lobster spaghetti and horse meat steaks. The duo is known to do absolutely everything in-house, even brew their own beer and distil their own absinthe. Stroll down Rue Notre-Dame, past their other restaurant, Liverpool House, to the nearby Lachine Canal after an evening at this inviting space with vintage wooden chairs, leather banquettes and a permanent air of celebration.
408 Rue Saint François Xavier
Chef Chuck Hughes’ first flagship restaurant remains one of the best good-time spots in Old Montreal, featuring a blackboard menu full of seasonal dishes and insane cocktails. The Caesar is a must-try and comes with a salad’s worth of vegetables and a whole snow-crab leg sticking out of a monster mug. After feasting on lobster salad, short ribs with cauliflower mash, or pan-fried sea scallops with carrot butter, hang out in this dimly lit joint and watch the night turn into a party, with the drinks flowing and the music thumping louder and louder as the cooks and waiters from nearby restaurants file in after their shifts.
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