Hot bars for hot dates
The nightlife in Montréal vies for your attention from all corners of the city – there’s always someplace cool to go. But what spots are perfect for a date? Here are seven seriously swell bars sure to wow your darlin’.
Wood-fired foods star at Bar Pamplemousse, a Saint-Laurent Boulevard brewpub with a Caribbean twist: think jerk cauliflower, lamb meatballs and roasted lettuce with guava glaze and goat’s cheese. Those delights are accompanied by 20 local brews on tap, so cuddle up close at one of the counters and experience the flavours of Montréal.
This glittering spot on Laurier Avenue West featuring cream-painted brick and wood panelling is an ode to Portugal, with warm-hearted cocktails starring red wine (like in the Bravo) and port (like in the Innocence, a spin on a Manhattan). With lots of nooks and tables for two, Bar Henrietta pretty much guarantees a sun-kissed time à deux.
The wine list at Loïc is awesome, but the food, the food… it’s worth the trip. Chef Liam Barron is a Joe Beef alum, so settle down in this intimate bar off the beaten path in Saint-Henri for a beef tartare – arguably the best in town – and a bottle of something organic, unusual and magnificent.
Atwater Cocktail Club
A secret not-so-secret unmarked speakeasy located behind the popular Foiegwa restaurant in Little Burgundy, Atwater Cocktail Club is poppin’ with a Montréal who’s who, so chances are you’ll be rubbing shoulders with local designers, chefs and IT people. It’s great for canoodling together to people-watch over a craft cocktail-of-the-week.
Le Red Tiger
Le Red Tiger is a Vietnamese pub in Centre-Sud that’s a dinner-and-drinks place all in one, with a menu full of alluring Vietnamese street fare – chef Phong Thach’s twist on street foods like green papaya, spring rolls and shrimp cakes will get your party started. To go with the nosh, try one of the unique cocktails like the Eye of the Lager, featuring five spice and kefir lime leaf.
Located in Saint-Henri, Cordova is a Spanish coffee spot by day (great for a first date) that turns into a neighbourhood bar by night, serving Basque cider and white wine on tap. Great for a follow-up! It’s just the right size for an intimate, animated time, so soak up the atmosphere and enjoy snacks like saucy squid or seared tuna belly.
A lavish Japanese speakeasy-cum-izakaya in Old Montréal, Flyjin turns full-on nightclub at the stroke of midnight (or thereabouts) to help turn your “getting to know you” phase into something more close-and-personal. The light show is extraordinary and would get anyone bopping to the hipster EDM on deck. Treat yourself to the Yuzu Spritz or go all-out and get bottle service.
Isa Tousignant, blogger
Isa Tousignant is an art and lifestyle writer based out of Montréal’s eclectic Park Ex neighbourhood. She is Contributing Editor for Canadian Art magazine and freelances full-time for a wide variety of magazines and brands. She’s also a jewellery designer and passionate about animal costumes and their role in contemporary art.
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