Estiatorio Skara

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Restaurant Estiatorio Skara
Quartier Dix 30
9190 Boul Leduc Suite 210
Brossard, Quebec
J4Y 0L1
Tel: 450-443-2226

Opened: April 2013
Chef Hats
Cost: $78.12- tax, tip included for two with cocktails

Quartier Dix 30 is not exactly a prime location for foodies to find their optimal restaurants. Usually these types of locations only have to offer the typical chain restaurants where tireless shoppers can find a place to rest in between their shopping expeditions or at the end of an exhausting day of walking around. But sometimes you may find the occasional independent place that has a little more to offer.
I had gone all the way to Dix 30 in Brossard to visit a food emporium called Valmont. Upon my arrival I discovered it had closed within a short span of under a year. Already there I decided make the best of it and visit a few other stores instead of heading back home. It must have been the hottest day of the century, as after two hours of walking around we were parched. My friend and I needed a place to rest our feet and soothe are parched soul. We looked up at the buildings in the center of the plaza and spotted a few rooftop restaurants and thought it would be splendid to sit up in the sky overlooking the plaza, having a drink and people watch on this beautiful day.

It is then we discovered Estiatorio Skara located in the center of the plaza on Leduc Street in the Quartier Dix30. Opened in spring 2013, it is a relatively new restaurant specializing in Greek and Mediterrean food. It offers a delicious variety mezzes, great cocktails and the fresh fish and grilled meats. Estatiorio Skara offers authentic Greek cuisine, in an absolutely beautiful stunning decor.The terrace transports you to Greece with its hues of blue umbrellas and white chairs and endless blue sky. For a moment you forget you are in a mall, until you look down or across and see the swarms of people and adjacent buildings.

Service and hospitality at Skara goes one step beyond normal. They are super accommodating. We requested a table on the terrace under an umbrella and although very busy they found a place for us.We started with a Long Island Ice Tea and Mojitos for $8.00 and did not have to wait too long.


They really quenched our thirst and were packed with alcohol. It was only four o’clock and we were feeling tipsy yet not too hungry, so we started with a small Greek Salad for at $14.00. A large salad will cost you $ 20.00, but is beyond generous and can be shared by two. It consisted of fresh hardy tomatoes, cucumber and kalamata olives and feta cheese. The salad was perfect; the tomatoes were ripe but not mushy. The cucumber was so refreshing and the feta and kalamata olives were a perfect blend.

The second mezze ordered was grilled Octopus for$ 20.00, which was also shared between two. It came with grilled red peppers, red onions & capers. My partner had never had grilled octopus and thought it was like calamari, to their surprise they really enjoyed the texture of the octopus, as it was perfectly grilled and tender, infused with lemon ,very tasty, served with bread, this was filling enough for two and too much for just one person.

Third mezze ordered was the Taramosalata- a puree of red fish roe for $ 11.00 served with baquette crisps. This was a creamy mix of puree that was not overly fishy and perfect served with baguette crisps infused with garlic and a touch of olive oil.
We loved this place. The crowd and the ambiance inside and out, we loved people watching especially the group of perfectly dressed twenty something’s who had amassed on the terrace for cocktails to celebrate a pre dinner before heading out to an event. Their semblance of Greek island tans and gorgeous swaying dresses reminded me of things we see only in the movies. Just watching them enjoy themselves was a pleasure in itself. Inside the decor is stunning, it has a romantic wispy feel with white sheer drapes covering the large windows, subdued lighting at the bar and wall to ceiling glass wine cellar. Beige and dark tones permeate the decor with large white columns that are tastefully done and not like those out of a scene of my Big Fat Greek wedding. No cheesiness here, everything is done with taste and class and the food is definitely a big plus. The flavours are delicate and lightly infused with mediterrean flavours of lemon and herbs but nothing over powering. I would definitely recommend Skara especially if you are in the area. It has got to be one of the better places in Quartier Dix 30 to celebrate or have a good meal and a cocktail or two on a hot day.

Estiatorio Skara Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

La Famiglia and Co.

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La Famiglia
871 Boulevard Saint-Charles,
Kirkland, QC
H9H 3B5
Phone: (514) 694-5555
Cost: $ 247.48 for 10 people (not including tip)
Chef Hats: 3
Opened July 19, 2011

It was time again for our annual family get-together. This year we were a big group with 25 people in attendance and we chose a restaurant that was synonymous to family. We wanted a place that could accommodate a large group, serve Italian food & that we could bring our own wine. So we chose La Famiglia on St Charles Boulevard in Kirkland after a unanimous decision. We only had a handful of places to choose from in the West Island that would accommodate all our needs. La Famiglia was one of the restaurants that came up and seemed appropriate for many reasons.


La Famiglia is a cozy, casual family-oriented restaurant serving mainly Italian food. Not much has been written about it, it does not have a known chef manning the kitchen. It is basically just a local eatery where most West Islanders go for classical Italian food. This was not important to the family as we care more about spending an evening with family then with the logistics behind a place. One thing the family does demand is good food.

La Famiglia is a busy restaurant especially on a weekend night. You can feel the buzz of the crowd at the door starting with the line ups. The ambiance is loud, not quite the place for a romantic date, but more for loud family or group functions. Reservations are highly recommended to guarantee a table.
We had reserved seating upon walking in; set in the middle of the restaurant a long table that felt very Roman Trattoria like. A long table set for a big group.
I must say that the service was very fast and courteous; they opened our wine bottles and brought us the menus immediately. They came back shortly thereafter to take our orders, and we were all served our meal as the same time. An accomplishment in itself.

Caprina Pizza
Margherita Pizza
Margherita Pizza

We sampled for starters, a Insalata mista, a Insalata Cesare and calamari fritti, Polpette della Nonna, Cozze, and a Portobello alla Griglia, ranging from $7.00 to $15.00.
The salad was generous portions and well seasoned to taste. The meatballs were good but not the freshest, they had been sitting in the sauce for a while, the mussels were decent but also not the freshest and the sauce that accompanied them had no outstanding flavors. The fried calamari was a mix of tender and crisp morsels, accompanied by a tomato sauce for dipping. The Portabella alla Griglia was not presentable. It looked like mashed mushrooms with Arborio rice. Instead of chunks of sliced mushrooms it looked like mushrooms had disintegrated into mush, the taste was bland, presentation was not appetizing. I would definitely would not order this, very disappointing. Something definitely went wrong in the kitchen.


Polpette della Nonna
Polpette della Nonna


On the next round of dishes, were not better. We ordered three pizzas, the Speck and Arugula, for $18.00, which was good but lacked the oomph in the dough. The Caprina with goat cheese and red peppers for $19.00 fell flat. The Margherita pizza for $15.00 ordered for the kids was cold, tough and flavorless.

The pastas dishes ordered were Gnocchi al la Gigi for $18.00 and Gnocchi Rose sauce for $ 17.00. I liked my Gnocchi al la Gigi. The gnocchi were not homemade and ultimately fresh, but it was edible. The gnocchi with the rose sauce tasted frozen and were served cold. The Penne with Sausage and Rapini for $ 18.00 only warranted a “I had better comment” and Penne Bolognese for $ 15.00 and a Spaghetti al Pescatore for $ 25.00 also were deemed decent but not outstanding.

So far the family was not impressed in the food department, but that did not matter as we were so busy chatting away.

Also ordered were the Chicken Parmesan at $ 22.00 and the Veal Limone for $ 25.00 and Entrecote for $ 30.00 which was of medium quality. Although edible, the dishes were truly not authentic. The sauces were generic tasting and the quality somewhat inferior. The Entrecote priced very high was not grilled accordingly and left much to be desired.


All in all, a good time was had by all. Most of us were full and opted out for dessert only one person ordered Tiramisu for $7.00. Just some cappuccinos, tea and espresso to cap off the night with more chit chat and stories amongst the family.


Kanda Sushi

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Kanda Sushi
3237 Boulevard des Sources (Galeries des Sources)
Dollard-des-Ormeaux, QC
H9B 1Z6
Phone: (514) 685-8808
Chef Hats: 2.5
Cost: $ 21.39 (tax & tip per person/lunch)
Casual Eats



With time things do change, the last time I ate Kanda Sushi on Boulevard St Jean in the West island many years ago upon its initial opening ,I was not too impressed. The sushi was not fresh, and other dishes were not comparable and I never returned. Meanwhile all you can eat Sushi restaurants began popping up all over town. A few years back it had become all the rage among the young millenniums and the trend seems to be going strong with no imminent end. I have been to some very good ones that are mostly situated in the new Chinatown, a stretch on St Catherine between Guy and St Marc in the downtown core. For the perpetual foodie, these types of restaurants are considered a casual eats. Unless you are eating at Park or Jun-I, where Sushi is more of an art and you are being served by the masters and every morsel has been carefully thought out.

Last October 2015, I heard that Kanda was moving from St Jean Boul. and opening up shop in Galeries des Sources. I was still not too impressed and I kind of stayed away. West Island has a handful of good all you can eat sushi restaurants; some are good and some are really bad, basically they have replaced the Italian eateries and Greek brochetteries that once lined the boulevards of this suburb. Therefore Kanda in my books was just another generic all you can eat franchise specializing in Sushi and Pan Asian food, making six branches throughout Montreal and outskirts.

Recently Kanda Sushi was suggested for lunch, not really having a choice in the matter as majority won, I decided to tag along and join in or eat alone. For $ 15.99 all you can eat lunch, I couldn’t go wrong. A Tim Horton sandwich would have cost me $ 10.00 plus tax anyways. So I decided to splurge.


You can find Kanda on the outside of the mall, a door away from Maison Corbeil. Not ideal in terms of locale, but once inside, it is totally modern and hi tech, something that will appeal to many millenniums. They also have tablets for menus instead of the old paper ones where you can order your food from. You have a choice of as many dishes as you want and its served tableside. No need to get up and go serve yourself like yester years. The décor is very lively and upbeat. The seating is a hue of red and blue leather banquettes and tables. The service is speedy and efficient. You will find all your favorites dishes, starting with any type of sushi and sashimi, soups, appetizers, teriyaki and tempuras. As well as some basic Thai and szchecuan dishes.


You can choose the portions based on the number of people you are. The portions are small and enough for one person, so make sure you order two portions if more than one person wants the same item on the menu, cause one is not enough to share. You can order as many times as you want. Kanda is also BYOB so don’t forget to bring your favorite sake.


In the evening the price increases to $ 25.50 per person, but it is still worth your while. Soft drinks are additional and some desserts like Fried Banana will cost you extra on your tab. Also anything that is not completed will cost you $1.50 on top of your original cost. Do not over order and no doggie bagging allowed or this is considered take out and it will cost you additional as well.


After that fateful day, I have visited a few Kanda Sushi around town and not all work in the same manner and not all are of the same quality. In June we visited the one on Decarie and were a little disappointed in terms of quality and service. I prefer the Dollard branch it seems more with the times and the food is decent and service friendlier. It also has more of a family atmosphere especially on the weekends with their large screen TV’s and lounge music. Not for those fickle at heart. It can be disturbing on the senses for some. But for a casual in and out lunch, it’s just perfect.


Dupond & Dupont

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Dupond & Dupont
1297 chemin Canora
Town of Mont Royal, QC
H3P 2J4
Chef Hats: 3
Cost: $ 37.35 (for two, tax and tip included)

The start of most good things begins with a name. So I ask myself why name a restaurant Dupond & Dupont.
It sounds very French; a good idea in our lovely French city that often evokes Paris with its cafes and restaurants. Can it be the name of two owners who invested in opening the restaurant? Not in this case, it actually comes from the two identical fictional characters in the Adventures of Tin Tin, a lovable French Belgian comic series that most Montrealer used to watch when growing up. For those who may not know, they are the two incompetent detectives that provide some sort of comic relief in the series. A Laurel & Hardy team of sorts, with one discernable factor their funny looking moustaches. If we examine the series carefully, these two comical characters constantly undo each other with their repetitive actions and dialogue. If you have driven on the roundabout near the Canora Train station to get to different points in the city you have gotten confused at least once and driven around again in the most comical way. Every true Montrealer knows this.

Hence the name was coined by Madjit Goulamhoussen the owner of Dupond & Dupont. I understand full well as many years ago, I used to use this route to get to Outremont and then Downtown. I too have driven around in circles in the most comical way. It was then that I spotted the blue awning and sign for Dupond & Dupont. I admired the large terrace outside and the overall look of the place, very Parisian I thought and how I would like to be sitting there sipping coffee instead of having to rush off to work.

It seems to be more like a thoroughfare for me, instead of a town center in this sleepy community of Town of Mont-Royal and certainly not one that many people flock to. This epicenter does not have many restaurants or businesses but a handful .You can count at least four in the immediate vicinity. La Pizzaola on the opposite side in the old train station and Galo a few hundred yards away and Villa Armando on Graham and Premier Moisson next door to Dupond & Dupont. Not exactly a very hip neighbourhood in terms of Foodie standards, but then it caters more to the locals than to the masses.

What has always impressed me was the quietness of the neighbourhood and some days in my crazy world I crave quietness. If you are this type of person, you will like this place. Warning, it does get busy at lunch time with the crowds coming from the local businesses, but in the evening it is a perfect place for a quiet dinner and a tète a tète. After so many years of passing through, I decided to a stop in at Dupond & Dupont for brunch before heading home from an appointment I had in TMR. It was always a place I wanted to experience and upon entering the premises I was pleasantly surprised at its nice decor and its affiliation to Premiere Moisson.

The inside of Dupond & Dupont can best be described as casual-yet elegant with nice color hues and tones of blue, brown and beige, very soothing on the senses. The restaurant was indeed very quiet with just a handful of elderly patrons and one wait staff and a hostess. We got a window seat in the sunshine on a beautiful day, and we were served coffee and orange juice immediately.

The service was friendly and not at all rude, they were efficient in taking our order and speedy with getting our meal. My dining partner wanted lunch; I wanted a hardy breakfast with eggs. They were able to accommodate us.

I ordered an omelette with ham and cheese for $ 13.00. It came with a side order of fries and salad. My partner ordered a Croque monsieur Sandwich with turkey, which came with salad and fries as well for $ 12.00. The Omelette was very satisfying and tasty, a large mound stuffed with ham, Swiss cheese, mushrooms and a mix of onions and peppers. The fries were crisp and the salad had the right amounts of seasoning and was lightly coated with oil and vinegar. The Croque Monsieur was perfect; it came served on a fresh baguette from the Premiere Moisson bakery next door. It contained slices of turkey and plenty of melted cheese. The portions were generous and we got free coffee and tea refills. I really enjoyed the quiet atmosphere and we were able to think and talk quietly. After our meal before heading home we stepped next door to Premiere Moisson and picked up some foie gras and patisseries to have later on during the day for or tea time.

Dupond & Dupond may be a local hangout, but it is a perfect neighbourhood for those who want something different and very private. They are not only a breakfast or lunch place, but are now open on certain nights of the week for dinner. Check hours for opening. Parking can be found on the street on the side of the building.
Maybe you will have a few laughs going around in circles too, no matter what; you’re guaranteed to have a good time or at least a pleasant one.
Dupond et Dupont Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Pizzeria Piccante

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Pizzeria Piccante
3343 A – Boul. des Sources (Centennial Plaza)
Dollard Des Ormeaux, QC
H9B 1Z8
Tel: (514) 421-2111

Cost: $ 29.44-Take Out
Chef Hats: 4

Pizza has become my comfort food, whenever I need a quick bite or simply a quick pick me up. I celebrate the end of a hard week with a convivial meal, a few bottles of Valpolicella  and plenty of laughter. It has become somewhat of a routine for me as it is familiar and comforting. That being  said, it doesn’t mean that I am not be innovative or stagnant in my choices.  I do deviate  once in a while by trying  new thing and new places. As the ultimate foodie I am a discriminate  eater and difficult to please. What is good for the gander is not always good for this goose.

When it comes to pizza, I always try to find the ultimate perfect pizza. The crust has  to be a certain way, just right, not too thin nor too thick. I prefer chewy pockets of fluffy dough slathered in good pizza sauce , the sauce has to have the right blend of acidity and must come  from good quality tomatoes. It has to be infused with the right amounts of garlic, oregano, and spices .The topping are optimal, the freshest mozzarella di buffalo or fiore di latte, or any cheese that tickles my fancy “ du jour “ like blue cheese, goat, cheddar or a blend of Quattro formaggi. Of course there are some combinations of vegetables that mix well together with certain types of cheeses too.

I like creating the flavours of nations on mine, grilled veggies like red peppers, zucchini, eggplants, mushrooms, onions, raw or caramelized, garlic with olive oil or no sauce at all and just a sprinkle of parmesan cheese. Arugula, spinach, prosciutto, blue, goat or feta, Meat lover’s pepperoni, bacon, and ground beef. The list goes on. I like to experiment till I find a mixture that pleases my palate.

At Pizzeria Piccante, you will find any of these combinations. Its opening at the end of June after an anticipating three month in the Centennial Mall in Dollard des Ormeaux is sure to satisfy any cravings. Their menu boasts some interesting pizza choices as well as great salads.Pizza comes in two sizes- Small and Large , the small are 11 inches and range in price from $ 11.00 for a Margherita to $ 15.00 for the gourmet plus . Larger family sized pizzas are $18.00 -$24.00.

Along with a good pizza a must sample is a side order of any of the Insalatas. I sampled the Insalata di Capri; it came with generous portions of mixed lettuce. The Capri had dried cranberries and goat cheese as a topping for $ 8.00. The Rustica is another good idea with a mix of greens, bocconcini cheese and prosciutto for $ 9.00, topped with their secret house salad dressing the combination is a divine for all those salad lovers. It doesn’t stop there, they have Nutella pizza for dessert for $ 9.00 and Di Mela with Apple & Caramel pizza for $ 10.00 which is a first for me as I have never seen it on any Montreal tables as of yet.




The original Pizzeria Piccante was situated in Laval, but it has since closed and has set up shop in the West Island. The pizzeria is owned by two brothers,who have twenty years experience in the restaurant business making pizzas. Having worked at the Brick Oven in Vancouver for many years is where they got the most arduous experience.

They really liked the feel of the neighbourhood and the great sense of community, and decided to set up shop here. “Everyone has been extremely friendly and we are happy to be part of the West Island community”.

Pizzeria Piccante is not a fast food delivery pizza parlour, the brothers want you to come in and enjoy the locale and their food in a relaxed convivial atmosphere. If you wish to eat at home you can always place an order and pick it up for take- out. Just give them a shout and they are more than willing to accommodate your needs.

All the pizzas are freshly made on the spot, not frozen or pre-cooked. Method of cooking used is a gas stone oven. Everything is made with quality ingredients, such as pure virgin olive oil, 100% San Marzano tomatoes and fresh good quality imported and local cheeses. You can also find pizza with truffle oil on their menu for those pure foodie aficionados. They are fully licensed and alcohol is moderately priced.

The restaurant is simple and very low key for now. They wanted to keep it simple, in terms of decor with nothing too fussy. The decor is minimalistic with a modern urban chic look. The lines are clean crisp and bright. The theme  is black and white . The writing is on the wall, you can check that out for yourself.  You will find a banquette along the window to grab a quick bite and a tables and chairs that can seat about 25 peoeple. The atmosphere is causal and  relaxed  the feeling is family friendly and convivial. But Pizzeria Piccante can also double as a great hang out with friends to grab a great pizza or even a dessert place for great dessert pizza and great coffee. Right now most of its clientele is the lunch crowd and it gets very busy.

I walked in the eve of Canada Day to get some good pizza, they were among a handful of places opened for business that day. The place was brimming with friends and family having a good time, the atmosphere was intoxicating and I felt like I was with among family and family. The pizza was really to my liking ,lacking none of the things I truly enjoy in a good pizza. the portions were generous, the service very friendly and accommodating, the  salads were huge. I was invited to come back, over and over again.

XO Cacao

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XO Cacao
3343 Boulevard des Sources (Centennial Plaza)
Dollard-des-Ormeaux, QC
H9B 1Z8
Phone: (514) 683-3050 xocacao
Cost: $ 34.37 – tax and tip included.
Chef Hats: 4

Montreal has weekly restaurant openings but so is not the case in the land of suburbia. Openings are few and far in between, but a few days before Valentine’s Day in February a new dessert place called XO Cacao quietly opened on Sources Boulevard in Centennial Plaza. Aside from the sign in the window that once housed Pasta Tutti Giorni, no one was aware this innovative desert shop came to fruition at the most opportune time. Long awaited by some West Island Foodies, who were fed up with the handful of usual café and desert shops that have existed for years, we craved something different.

I have said it many times that West Island falls short of original ideas when compared to Montreal and that the suburban landscape as that of Laval is splattered with too many chain restaurants that serve a generic menu and favors only consumption for the mass market. For the Montreal foodie, the maximum allowable shops allowable to not fall into the chain category is two. Anything after that is considered a franchise. A friend of mine who once owned a Second Cup explained this to me that to turn a profit one had to own a few franchises to be making any kind of money. This is a fact that does not cross a regular patron mind and that a foodie surely does not care about; we abhor franchises and look for originality. Our proverbial mission is to always find a new place that serves innovative cuisine by a renowned chef that will bring his craftsmanship to our fickle palates. These days many restaurants are owned by a group of people, branded with a name synonymous to a lifestyle. We can count a few in Montreal who have and still do turn a profit, get into trouble and open and close restaurants as soon as they have become outdated.

But West Island is not Montreal and we want our restaurants to stay as long as our children are all grown up. We establish a rapport with our shop owners and they become an integral part of our community and an extension of our family. We are loyal and go more than often.
I would like that for XO Cacao and felt at home and was awed when visiting shortly after its opening. The new local looked amazing with its streamlined black and white décor and beautiful mural of photos of the great European cities. The opposite wall features a splash of color with artful paintings made by local artists that can be purchased for a small price.


The ambiance is classic in a European sort of way. Tastefully decorated, minimalistic and uncluttered, and fitting the recent mold of many urban modern cafes and chocolatiers. The décor itself will take you to faraway lands. The service although local and unpretentious is super friendly and accommodating.


This dessert shop is definite contenders for all those die-hard chocolate fanatics that like to quench their weekly cravings in fine chocolates. We are pleased now that we don’t have to wander too far to satisfy all of our chocolate cravings. XO Cacao is comparable and better than many of the in town chocolate dessert places I have frequented of lately.

XO Cacao also serves a plethora of sweet & savory crepes with a choice of fillings to satisfy all taste buds and sweet tooth’s desires du jour. A must for me was the waffles topped with my choice of fruit and a mix of any chocolate desired , white milk or white and that extra maple syrup for an added touch of extra sweetness.

XO also serves delicious fondue with fruit for a convivial partage a deux, for those romantic date nights or long chats between girlfriends. Gluten Free-Gelato and sorbet creations made in-house for those ice cream aficionados, or simply crepes for lunch stuffed with anything from ham and cheese, chicken or spinach, egg and goat cheese, they come served with their house salad and secret house dressing. Desserts such as cheesecake, fudge cake and brownies can be sampled with any type gelato and a list of specialty coffees and teas and hot chocolate beverages of course, because where would any good chocolaterie be without it that magical blend of hot chocolate drink that adds sweet ambrosia to life.

Waffles with Strawberries White Chocolate

Everything we sampled on our first visit was delicious from the Nutella crepes to the waffles with white chocolate and fresh strawberries. To compliment that we sampled two herbal teas of our choice, picked from a tea box for $ 3.00 each. The prices at XO Cacao are very reasonable comparative to other desert shops, our crepes were only $8.00, but can range from $ 6.25 to $ 12.95 and the waffles were $ 12.00 but range from $ 11.00 to $14.00. Although the menu stipulates $ 13.95 the numbers are rounded off on the bill. You can blame the government for that. But it is all worthwhile.

Nutella Crepes

XO Cacao is truly a gem and one of a kind with their philosophy not only to shop local, but by enhancing their community through local artist exhibition; all the while by preparing high-end desserts that are affordable in a setting and ambiance unmatched in every sense.
XO Cacao Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

The West Island Deli

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West Island Deli
3689 Boul. Saint-Jean
Dollard-des-Ormeaux, Québec
H9G 1X2
Phone: (514) 624-3354
Casual Eats: Chef Hats 3
Cost: $ 39.66

I can’t say how many times I have eaten smoked meat in my life, let’s just say allot. My dad was an avid fan and when I moved to the West Island his normal routine after visiting me was taking a trip down to Chenoy’s on St John Boulevard to get the snack pack. He loved it and I still have till this day fond memories of those days.

It was circa 1999, when we heard about Abie’s; it was the place to go in the West Island if you wanted a great smoked meat sandwich comparable to Schwartz on the Main. Situated in a mall a hop and skip away from Chenoy’s it was the real deal, without having to actually drive to the Plateau and lining up to get into Schwartz. Rumors were that Abie’s Deli had purchased the old grill from Schwartz’s were John Haim had worked for 34 years. It was the best grill for liver steak and even Schwartz with their new grills couldn’t compare to the old taste. I loved Abie’s and would purchase whole briskets to bring down to my friends in the US, who were smitten with the old European way of smoking meat.

It was a huge disappointment to hear about the fire at Abie’s in 2013 and its slow return, then the news that they were not being able to negotiate a new lease agreement in its present location and were closing; but moving down the street to new digs in the Blue Haven mall and rebranding with a new lease on life and a new name. On lives a new era where even a long time West Island favorite McBay’s had to close after being a fixture in the West Island for 40 years due to hard times and bad management. For a while smoked meat no longer seems to be the favorite of local West Islanders, and delis were a thing of the past with all modern bistros opening up everywhere, but tradition must prevail. The West Island Deli is the only place left in this neck of the woods that serves a real decent smoked meat and all the deli favorites; like it is suppose to be. It would be a real shame if we would lose that too.

On a more positive note, the West Island Deli merits a visit, as its new location is not only much cozier, but has been totally renovated in a modern theme with grey and white brick tiles. It has a very bistro feel to it with its black tables and chairs and comfortable leather banquettes. With its surrounding white paned windows it looks more like something you would find in Paris than an old fashioned Jewish deli. Even the new logo which is splashed across each paned window has a modern European twist. Its cool urban decor is a sure draw for those late night eaters and the twenty-something’ crowd after a late night of partying. Or it is simply a great place to grab a bite, with family or go watch the hockey game with friends on the multiple TV screens that have been strategically placed above, so you get a good angle from wherever you are sitting.

Even though West Island Deli is meat heavy, it also serves great breakfasts and some healthier sandwiches, what is so beneficial here is that the deli does not use sodium nitrates as a preservative on their cuts of meat instead they use a special in house rub, a mix of pickling spices and a $ 70,000 smoker to lock in the juices creating perfect briskets that can be ordered to your choice, fatty, medium lean or dry.

We ordered two smoked meat sandwiches, two sodas and a large poutine to share. The medium fatty smoked meat sandwich was perfectly tender, tasty and juicy with the perfect amount of fat. The dry smoked meat sandwich was good but I prefer the medium fatty to the dry. Our large poutine came served in a mound of crispy fries, ample gravy and cheese curds. We received coleslaw and pickles to go with our sandwiches. The portions here are big and this was more than plenty for two small appetites.

Our sandwiches came served with mustard, and extra on the side if we wanted, which pleased me greatly because at Chenoy’s a few months earlier, I was told by a waiter that smoked meat was never suppose to be served with mustard. Unless he misunderstood my request, which meant he was not listening, this is totally preposterous, as I had always eaten my smoked meat with mustard my whole lifetime and had never heard of such nonsense.

The customer is always right and if they request something, they should be accommodated. It is not like I asked for foie gras for free, last time I checked condiments were at your discretion.

The service at West Island deli is courteous and fast. Our waitress was ever so accommodating and agreeable; she was pleasant, talkative and cheery. What a difference! We decided to drop in at the spur of the moment, to grab a bite to eat after shopping. It was a quiet night, a few patrons sat at the pick-up counter waiting for their orders; we liked the place so much we decided to dine at the restaurant to enjoy the whole feel of the place. Abie Haim was there behind the counter to greet us and let us sit wherever we wanted. Transplanted and hanging next to us in our booth were pictures of various past Montreal scenes that hung in the old Abie’s Deli, which created a great conversation piece in regards to the old Jewish community on the Main and gave us food for fodder while we ate a piece of history.

Fine dining is great but we need more places like The West Island Deli this to bring us back to our roots, and don’t forget the pickle.

West Island Deli Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info – Zomato
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West Island Deli Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato