Food, glorious food!

2 Aug



Living in the city with the most restaurants per capita in North America, no, it is not New York dudes, but Montreal itself, there is an amazing cosmopolitan window of opportunities and choices, and I have to say I am really short on my list on the “must” restaurants to visit. 

And since at some point, I have to get started…

Yesterday one of my best friends treated me for dinner as a birthday gift, and the choice was “Le Smoking Vallée” just around my neighborhood in the “wanna be” trendy St-Henri Burrough.

It is a cute “bring your own wine” bistro almost hidden in between Notre Dame Ave and Beaudoin street. At first sight you would think it is just a newly renovated triplex, but alas, inside it is far from it.

It takes the place of the old “Aux Trouvailles” and there is no sign outside that shows the location of the restaurant so do not confuse it with the John 2.0 dinner in the corner (another “newbie” in the neighborhood). Make sure you are at the right place.

The menu consists of a 4 meal course, but you can choose à la carte if you do not want to pay $50 +tax or eat the whole course. But believe me the food is worth every cent.

My personal favorites were the Gazpacho with almonds and spicy pasted cheese, simply EXCELLENT and the salmon salad with beats (though I hate em, they were incredibly good), goat cheese,and pear.

The soup however changes periodically.

The white tuna tartar with caviar over a curry paste bed and tempura is really refreshing, healthy, and the portion is perfect. You will feel perfectly filled, no more no less and even have space for dessert. Try the glaced Scottish caramel parfait with québécoise strawberries and caramelized almonds. Really good.

“Is there a fly in the Metamucil?” – you might ask


Surprisingly on a Wednesday evening, the restaurant was PACKED, not a single table available, which is good for business but bad for casual conversation. It is very, very loud and the staff, though extremely friendly take some time to offer you water or a refill of it. Also you might want to consider taking the subway instead of your car as there is no easy space for parking.

The owner must be a communist who believes in the equality of bowel movement as there is only one, I repeat, ONE single bathroom for the whole restaurant so prepare for a line up and be careful not to get stuck inside as the door is badly leveled and if you lock the door you might get trapped for quite a while without being heard. (It happened to a friend…)

Aside from these little skirmishes the place is GREAT and really brings and revamps the area that St-Henri is slowly trying to become “the new Plateau” of Southwest Montreal.

Check it out! 

This humble nobody rates it with 4.5 out of 5 stars! 



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