4230 Boul .Saint-Jean (corner Shakespeare)
Dollard-Des Ormeaux, Québec
Tel : (514) 624-6010
Cost: 122.73 (tax and tip included for 3 persons)
La Perle Restaurant has been a staple of Sichuan and Thai cuisine in the West Island since 1990. In its heyday the line ups to get in for a meal at La Perle were long, but once inside you were guaranteed and served the best all you can eat Asian food on this side of Montreal.
I remember going there with family & friends almost once a month for a couple of years to enjoy a convivial meal together. We enjoyed it so much, that it inspired me to take courses on how to make Sichuan & Thai food at home. Soon afterwards I was branded the Queen of Sichuan by those friends who I invited over for dinner. That was 25 years ago and a lot has changed. Today, the line ups at La Perle have withered and the “in thing” has become all you can eat sushi and Japanese food.
This year while driving by with my daughter she mentioned that a friend of hers always goes there with his parents and asked why we had never been to La Perle. I attempted to explain much to my embarrassment that I was not sure why; was it because we had been there so many times that we decided not to revisit it. The truth being I had forgotten it was there. Neatly tucked away in the corner this building on St John’s Boulevard, we decide to try all the other new places in the area that opened over the years that we forget it was there, and how much we used to enjoy it. It is only when we pass by that we are confronted with the reminder that it still exists.
So I made it a point to return to La Perle this year with the family for her birthday. Stepping inside was a blast from the past. I found not much has changed in terms of decor and ambiance, but it still serves great and tasty all you can eat Sichuan and Thai dishes that will warm up your soul any day.
For 29.95 (except Saturday $ 30.95) you have a choice of 115 dishes and you can order all of them if you wish. The menu contains many of the all time favorites and more. We ordered as much as we could for her to savour. She is by far the perpetual Asian food lover. She was not disappointed and is quite used to all this all you can eat type of venue. But in all honesty, we did not get to finish lots of the dishes. No qualms by the staff. Our waiter did not make any comments and was pleased to serve us, even if he knew we were over ordering.
La Perle is best enjoyed with lots of friends, if they don’t mind spending $ 29.95. You can try as many of the typical things as most of us are accustomed to by now like Soups, Hunan dumplings, which are perfect here, Crispy spring rolls, shrimp toast, satay chicken in peanut sauce, General Taos, crispy beef etc.
There are other items on the menu like shrimp and chicken in coconut, basil & curry sauces which are to die for. Get a good mix of both Thai and Sichuan to get the full effect of this great cuisine. The portions are generous but they adapt the portions to the number of people you are.
All in all the experience was good. I asked myself why we had not been here more often over the years. Note: You can order a la carte as well and they also have take-out and delivery service if you wish. At a time in West Island when many of the Chinese restaurants have closed, La Perle is still a gem in an ocean of businesses that has stood the test of time.