Montreal is a very special place in North America due to its strong roots held in French culture and heritage.
With over 6,000 restaurants, the city has the largest concentration of restaurants on the continent — nearly 65 restaurants per square kilometer. The sector is very competitive and brings some closures every year, unfortunately but also newcomers, encouraging the ones who stay to be creative and finding always news ways to delight their clientele.
Even if Quebec is not renowned for its wines, it’s definitely worth to know that this is a wonderful place to drink it. Montrealers enjoy dearly good food and wines with a consumption of 22 Liters of wine per person per year. You will have the opportunity to discover very interesting wines from all over the world usually from small estates who work generally in respect of nature handpicked by each restaurant and bar.
Here are my suggestions.
1-BUVETTE CHEZ SIMONE
4869 Av du Parc, +1 (514) 750–6577.
This bar is located in Mile End, one of the most artsiest neighborhoods in North America. Mile End is a melting pot for musicians, artists and a community of Jews all living parallel lives to one another, which makes this district very unique.
“Buvette” in French is a refreshment bar, a small place to come for a drink and a light meal, waiting for a train or before going to see a show. Chez Simone is not near any train station or theater but it’s a nice addition to the city’s wine bars. With a terrace overlooking Park Avenue and a spacious and inviting interior, Buvette Chez Simone is the perfect place for a night out with friends or a late-night drink.
Their wine list is full of organic, natural and biodynamic wines that will go along with the minimalistic plates they’re offering that come pretty much all at the same time: fresh oysters that bloom under a sweet and sour salsa with mango, exquisite and hot cod acras, sweet Parma ham in thin slices, French rosette from Lyon…
No reservation. First come, first served. A crowded atmosphere so make sure to come up early.
1234 Avenue du Mont-Royal Est, +1 (514) 303–3822
Founded by 2 french, life-long friends from the Loire Valley, they own a vineyard in France from the Languedoc which makes this destination quite present on their list. A very welcoming atmosphere where usually Alain will be always here to greet you and find you a table.
“Wine is grape juice with a little bit of alcohol. It’s meant to give pleasure, it does not have to be pompous or elitist. And then, wine is not just a product. This is also the moment, the person with whom we are to drink with. We can taste the best bottle in the world, if it’s with a bugger, well we’ll have a bad time. “
-Alain Rochard (co-owner of the bar)
The wine list includes a multitude of references from around the world among which is highlighted the Languedoc, territory of southern France where the owners are from.
Regarding food, we also speak of local, organic to the extent possible.
Extraordinarily cool place on the Plateau Mont-Royal. A must.
3424 Av du Parc, +1 (514) 288–7779
Pullman wine bar is essentially devoted to the sinful pleasures of wine. Guests are welcome for an aperitif among friends, a gourmet degustation, or a late night snack. Their sommeliers gladly offer their expert opinion in pairing entries from an extensive wine list and tapas-style menu.
Expertise on the floor, talent in the kitchen, elegance in the dining room. A magnificent wine list, which includes hundreds of proposals, including fifty by the glass, and a very well-trained staff to accompany you in your choices.
The menu consists of small dishes tapas type, fresh, well made and presented (tartare, mini-burgers, crispy lamb, grilled cheese, etc.).
2519 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest, (no phone)
This bar, located not far from the chic Atwater Market, was created by the owners of Joe Beef & Liverpool House, successful restaurants in Montreal. This is the place to go for a decent glass of wine on the west side of the city.
Vin Papillon (Wine Butterfly in English) is a paradise for lovers of vegetables, comfort food, but also organic wines. All wines are natural and organic, and come from small producers.
My promise is that you will certainly have your hunger satisfied and discovered very good wines after an evening there!
29 Rue Beaubien Est, +1(514) 439–8747
Cul-sec is a small wine shop that offers a range of wines to be consumed on site or to take away with the purchase of a meal. In addition to offering a selection of wines that are out of the ordinary, Cul-sec puts forward nature wines, organic, and several products from the artisans of the vineyard.
Martin Juneau, the man behind this bar is a busy man (owner of other restaurants in town such as the amazing Pastaga). He is full of ideas and passion for gastronomy and wines. That’s what pushed him to create a small place where the real stars would be the bottles.
Cul-sec is not strictly a restaurant, but rather a wine bar that gives you the opportunity to leave with bottles at the end of the meal.
A brand-new formula in Montreal, since institutions generally do not offer to buy bottles individually to take home.
115 Avenue Laurier Ouest, +1(514) 276–4282
This charming bar located in the Mile-End neighborhood is a superb place where you can enjoy a drink and a bite to eat. The establishment is part of my favorite places to go to feast.
The owners have put together a superb bar with some Portuguese accents. Friendly and pretty decor, which again surprises with its delicacy and harmony. “Henrietta” comes from the Portuguese side of Alexander Baldwin (one of the owner), and the bar is inspired by Portugal and its taverns during the 1960s.
You will find there natural and organic wines and many bubbles, between 40 and 80 $.
Bar Henrietta is a bar, but you can eat some small plates of delicious treats, Portuguese inspirations prepared by the chef: homemade batata, small salads, hams, sausages, cheeses, Portuguese sandwiches (grilled cheese and pork piri-piri), chicken and other delicacies.
You will love the place and would want to spend all your evenings at Henrietta!
111 St Paul Ouest +1 (514) 289–3777
“Our formula is to offer a warm and welcoming place to our guests and take good care of them. We are always ready to help them or join them to make their evening a success. “
This bar located in the old Montreal is a very nice place to go out, ideal for a 5 to 7.
The owners wanted to create a bar where to enjoy good wine, cocktails and food, in addition to all the other wonderful things in life.
At Philemon you will be offered a bold and affordable wine list that features products from a dozen of small estates from the world who work in general in respect of nature.
Plates to share cheeses, cold cuts, vegetables, tapenades and others, simple dishes. Many flavors and spices influenced by the eclectic mix of the chef (Russian, Haitian and Moroccan).
The Philémon offers its guests a pleasant and festive atmosphere.
212, rue Notre-Dame Ouest, +1 (514) 282 2020.
This impressive and charming wine bar located in the Old Montreal combines the knowledge of wine with local Quebec cuisine.
It will delight the connoisseurs and curious as its aims are to pair the ingredients and flavors of Quebec with the wine that will accompany it best. Moreover, it is from this intention that the establishment was named.
“Since the beginning, our intention was to offer wine pairings with the dishes”.
They like to make people travel with their glasses of wine.
You will be able to lunch and dine there. Pork loin, fish of the day, risotto of the day and other delicious cuts of meat are here offered, with starter and coffee.
Why going to Accords? To discover wine and a meal that is a real tasting.
196, Fleury Street West, +1 (514) 508–5033
This friendly wine bar located in the heart of Ahuntsic focuses on excellent service and the joys of wine. It offers a warm, inviting cuisine with a homegrown Québec flair.
Cavistes offers bistro-style cuisine and a carefully curated wine list featuring over a hundred wines from all over the world. The restaurant has won the Wine Spectator Restaurant Award of Excellence every year since 2014. The Menu includes among other boudin, salads, the classic steak or tartar with fries.
1041 Avenue Van Horne, +1(514) 495–4000
Beautiful little bistro of Outremont, freshly opened during summer 2017, Boxermans is the project of three young entrepreneurs: Jade Fortin, Eric Berlin and Sean Murray Smith.
“We wanted to become a little local bistro, accessible to everyone, at any time of the day”.
This cool, really pretty bar with a vintage touch offers a menu with items between $ 3 and $ 14.
The wine list offers beautiful finds! Bottles of whites, bubbles, rosés and reds ranging from $ 31 to $ 100, highlighting interesting small producers. Boxermans also offers cocktails, digestifs and appetizers designed by the owners along with craft beers and ciders.
It’s unpretentious, friendly, and when you come in here; you’re just fine!
Telephone Code: from abroad, dial 001.
Language: English and French. Every true Montrealer is fluent in both English and French.
Currency: Canadian dollar.