Where to eat in Montréal during the holidays
This article was updated on December 3, 2019.
We can all agree that gathering and sharing a festive meal amongst loved ones and friends is one of the things we look forward to during the holidays. Whether you’re visiting Montréal or are looking for dining options to avoid doing the dishes, here are some places to celebrate the season one meal at a time.
Toast the holidays and try Québécois cuisine at the same time! You can’t talk about traditional terroir cuisine without naming Au Pied de Cochon. Specializing in foie gras (duck liver), Chef Picard’s team celebrates this local delicacy and export product while featuring other Québec ingredients and traditions on their menu. Another option is the ultra-casual Québécois diner La Binerie Mont-Royal. Located in the Plateau, this charming spot offers counter dining and serves traditional meat or fish pie, and famous “pouding chômeur” – Québécois-style bread pudding. Visit Mâche Restaurant in the heart of the Quartier Latin for some classic comfort food, such as "pâté chinois" (shepherd’s pie), poutine and burgers, to keep you warm.
The holiday season doesn’t have to be about indulgence and excess. Here are some places that serve lighter fare instead of heavy holiday meals. Invitation V is one of the city’s most popular vegan bistros, with an eclectic menu inspired by Chef Kelvin’s international travels. Lola Rosa’s slogan is “the vegetarian restaurant preferred by non-vegetarians.” It’s a big claim to entice meat-eaters over to the veggie side. They have two locations that serve vegetarian and vegan dishes – don’t miss out on the vegetarian poutine! Get your fill of greens at Mandy’s, Montréal’s premiere gourmet salad bar. With 18 different signature salads, as well as build-your-own bowls, the options are endless. Another great vegetarian spot is LOV, which offers the “taste of well-being without compromise” with its gourmand plant-based menu. Visit any one of its four locations across the city.
It’s undeniable that the holiday season is a magical time of year where the diet is on hold and you go all in when you get the chance to. The Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth hotel offers a stunning holiday menu. From a multi-course Christmas Eve dinner service, Christmas Day brunch and dinner options, its bar and restaurant, Nacarat and Rosélys, will ring in the new year with cocktails and canapés, a seven-course festive dinner on the 31st, and a brunch service on the 1st. If you’re going all out, book a seat at one of the city’s most prestigious tables – Restaurant Europea. Try its fancy brunch during the month of December or reserve for its swanky New Year’s Eve celebration that will feature a multi-course dinner and live music.
Welcome 2020 with lady luck on your side at the Casino de Montréal! Celebrate the holidays in a choice of four unique dining experiences. Le Montréal and Pavillon 67 both offer festive menus that cover the month of December through Christmas and into the new year. Ring in the January 1 count down at renowned L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon and choose from two multi-course menus that will surely impress or party the night away at the Cabaret du Casino with Pavillon 67's celebrated buffet dinner and a show.
New Year’s in the Old City
The Old Port of Montréal during the holidays is definitely a destination to take in some of the sights and sounds of the cheerful festivities. Check out the Experience Vieux-Montréal’s roster of restaurants that are offering special Christmas and New Year’s Eve menus. All properties are serving various multi-course menus from December 24 to January 1, including Verses Bistro and Modavie, which will have live jazz to set the mood, and Jacopo and BEVO Bar + Pizzeria, which are offering an authentic Italian dining experience, to name a few. Have the first meal of the new year with a hearty festive holiday brunch at Vieux-Port Steakhouse or wake up to a Parisian-inspired boozy brunch at Brasserie 701, which, with Méchant Boeuf Bar-Brasserie, will feature bottomless mimosas on its menu.
Celebrate “Noite de São Silvestre” (Feast of Saint Sylvester) on December 31 at Helena or at Montréal’s only revolving restaurant, Portus360, and soak in the magnificent views of the city while ringing in the new year with Chef Helena Loureiro’s and her team.
Some other spots around town that you may want to check out on Christmas or New Year’s Day for special celebration meals: Chez Lévêque (holiday dinner and brunches), Restaurant La Raclette (bring your own wine or champagne for countdown), Le Balcon for a dinner and a show, or the ever popular Restaurant Carte Blanche, located in the heart of the Gay Village.
Holiday hours vary for each establishment. We suggest you call ahead.
Jason Lee, blogger
Jason is a food eater and picture taker. As the blogger behind Shut Up and Eat, he covers everything food, from recipes to reviews. Jason has vowed that he will not stop until he has officially eaten his way across Montréal. It’s a big claim, and it’s one he’s making.