Montreal’s culinary superstars love their local ingredients, particularly regionally raised foie gras. Credit the craze to chef Normand Laprise, of the failed Flatiron eatery Cena, who made this global delicacy his specialty at Toqué! Depending on the season, find your foie gras seared and served with macerated plums or sliced thin atop an apple purée.
The best of the city’s Gallic bistros remains the revered L’Express (3927 Rue Saint-Denis; 514-845-5333). The restaurant, painted a Provence yellow, has Montreal's finest frites.
Montrealers take their bagels seriously: Baked in wood-fired ovens, they’re smaller and sweeter than ours. Fairmount Bagel and St-Viateur Bagel both serve standouts 24 hours a day in the Mile End, a neighborhood rich with ethnic eateries, like the upscale Estiatorio Milos (Greek) and the soulful Guyanese restaurant Le Jardin du Cari (21 Rue Saint-Viateur Ouest; 514-495-0565).
A former foundry, Cluny ArtBar has furnishings made from recycled sheet metal that accentuate the rough-hewn, industrial space. Terrific sandwiches soften the aesthetics. Open for lunch Monday through Friday and dinner on Thursdays.