Food & Drink

Montreal's Best Brunch Spots

Published On 09/08/2016 Published On 09/08/2016

Brunching in Montreal is a weekend rite of passage. A Sunday just doesn’t feel the same without some overpriced eggs drizzled with copious quantities of sauce, followed by a pitcher of Bloody Caesars or mimosas. But given the hefty price tag that usually accompanies these outings, you want to make sure your money is well-spent, preferably at some of Montreal’s best brunch spots.

Flickr/Robin Zebrowski

Restaurant L'Avenue

Plateau

Every day of the week, amidst madly painted walls and under a hanging motorcycle, L'Avenue's breakfast-goers take selfies with sculpted eggs Benedict and generous cocktail glasses. This is our favourite breakfast in Montreal, but be warned -- even on a weekday at 8:30am, you’re likely to stand in line for your fruit skewer.

Burgundy Lion

Burgundy Lion

Saint-Henri

If you are looking to feel like an English traveler while eating your breakfast, come to this dark-but-warm pub on a weekend morning. We're suckers for the kippers & mash brunch option (Burgundy Lion's rendition can convert anyone to a smoked-herring-in-the-morning kind of person), but you can always go for a traditional and have your eggs with a side of beans -- and, of course, a Caesar.

The Sparrow

Mile End

Marked only by a small round bird sign above the entrance, this popular brunch place may be hidden from sight, but not from mind -- it’s high on the list of locals’ favourites. Try the shakshuka with merguez sausage, or the Turkish breakfast... and always go for the bourbon lemonade.

Ksenia Prints/Thrillist

Le Vieux Velo

Rosemont

Come to this charming cafe with an eclectic vintage air and mismatched plates for hearty, traditional breakfast in the early morning, or all day during the weekend. The atmosphere here is just relaxed and homey enough to make you forget how many cups of coffee you’ve actually had.

Lawrence

The Main

What started out as an ad-hoc brunch arrangement served out of the previously mentioned The Sparrow, has blossomed into an empire. Lawrence now has a butcher shop, a small plates restaurant, and of course, its flagship fine-dining namesake establishment. The brunch specials are always changing, but you can expect hearty fare with special attention paid to unusual cuts of meat.

3734

3734

Saint-Henri

A newcomer to the Montreal brunch scene, 3734 wins us over by offering what might be the one of nicest ways to have your breakfast: lounging on a cute terrasse in one of the city’s hippest neighbourhoods. The food here is simple, but done well, and really, that's all you need.

Regine Cafe

Régine Café

Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie

Regine Café is a charming little neighbourhood spot with slightly upscale fare and beautiful pastries. The brunch here is legendary (as well as the persona Regine) throughout the city, and tastes as good on the inside as it looks on the outside.

Le Cartet

Le Cartet

Old Montreal

Known for its decadent French fare, Le Cartet's brunch is something special indeed. The food here is meticulously executed, and you can bet that everything you get is truly prepared with expertise and care.

Beautys Luncheonette

Mile End

The Beautys Special and the Mish-Mash are why people have been queuing up outside the doors of this Montreal institution since 1942: a bagel with smoked salmon, cream cheese, tomato, and red onion, and an omelette with hot dogs, salami, onions, and green peppers, respectively. According to the owner, no matter how many times you’ll try to recreate these simple dishes at home, you will keep coming back for that good ol’ Beautys taste.

Ludger

Ludger

Saint-Henri

A stylish place decorated in 1970s art nouveau, Ludger may seem just like another hip Saint-Henri joint upon first blush. But a taste of the poached eggs in cream and spinach will send you to food heaven, while the chicken & egg sandwich will cement your dedication to lunch food for breakfast. Open only on Sundays for weekend brunch.

Fabergé

Mile End

Fabergé is definitely a place to see and be seen during weekend brunch hours, filled to the brim with fashionable people strutting their best nonchalant but totally chic weekend outfits. Once you get past the trying-too-hard vibe, the food here is what’s it’s all about: generous, modern, and decadent.

Prohibition

Prohibition

Notre-Dame-de-Grâce

Prohibition is NDG’s hippest subterranean brunch option. From glorious eggs to famous fried chicken and challah French toast, the food here doesn’t skimp on flavour, presentation -- or calories.

Salmigondis

Salmigondis

Little Italy

Though brunch doesn’t come cheap in a city with so many options, the selection at Salmigondis is well worth the higher-than-usual prices. It’s a place you go for a well-tailored, expertly served, and perfectly executed experience, whether for brunch or dinner.

Bagel Etc

The Main

Though Leonard Cohen is no longer a regular at this Saint-Laurent fixture, Bagel Etc remains as bustling -- and popular -- as ever. Come here for interesting twists on that infamous Montreal breakfast fixture, the bagel sandwich, and the wall of different hot sauces to adorn your sandwich or plate of eggs.

Le Richmond

Le Richmond

Griffintown

Another brunch spot you visit when you want to feel like a Rockefeller, or at least a Bronfman. The people here are beautiful, the setting is gorgeous, and the food is lavish -- but you’ll be paying through the nose for the whole affair. At a place with a retractable terrasse, what else would you expect?

Lavanderia

Westmount

If you’ve been dying for some thick cuts of prime meat with your breakfast, then Lavanderia is the place for you. An homage to chef Antonio Park’s Argentinian upbringing, this beautiful Westmount restaurant is a sharp departure from the meticulous, pricey sushi we’ve come to associate with Chef Park, but the same flair and attention to detail are visible in every dish served here.

Le Bon Vivant

Le Bon Vivant

Saint-Henri

We just can’t get enough of Le Bon Vivant’s Mexican breakfast skillet. Piled high with cheese, tortillas, and homemade salsa, this sizzling-hot dish arrives to your table with a side of cold avocado crema -- and a warning not to touch the pan. The rest of the menu is just as playful, pulling from cuisines all around the globe.

Restaurant Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara

Villeray

One of the hottest new restaurants in Montreal is Santa Barbara, which riffs off authentic Mexican food with skill, flair, and an attention to detail that is usually reserved only for fine dining. All the sweet and savoury breakfast options here are excellent, but you simply can’t pass up a taste of the restaurant's cocktails -- they’ve been making a name for themselves throughout the city. Open for brunch only on weekends.

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Ksenia Prints is a freelance writer and food blogger, photographer, and recipe developer for At the Immigrant's Table whose second passion is music festivals. Follow her exploits in the kitchen and beyond at @immigrantstable.

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1. L’Avenue 922 ave. du Mont-Royal Est, Montréal, H2J 1X2 (Plateau)

This breakfast and brunch favorite often has a line of people waiting to get inside the artfully decorated confines of this Plateau resto.

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2. Burgundy Lion 2496, rue Notre-Dame Ouest, Montréal, H3J 1N5

This British-style pub and restaurant doles out a variety of brews and liquors, and they have lengthy menu with options for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert.

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3. Sparrow / Le Moineau 5322 boul. Saint-Laurent, Montréal, H2T 1A5 (Mile End)

This resto & cocktail spot's always filled with Mile End neighborhood regulars who come back for The Sparrow's baller weekend brunch. On the must-eat list: banana and chocolate-filled donuts, smoked salmon & scrambled eggs, and a potato & cabbage dish called Bubble 'n Squeak.

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4. Le Vieux Vélo 59, rue Beaubien, Montréal, H2S 1R1

Le Vieux Velo is a great spot for an early morning breakfast, but if you're a late riser don't worry, they serve brunch all day.

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5. Lawrence 5201 boul. Saint-Laurent, Montréal, H2T 1S4 (Plateau)

This Montreal resto and cafe does the best breakfast and brunch in town. The reason? Instead of giving you fresh rolls before your meal, they give you fresh DONUT PUFFS. You're welcome.

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6. 3734 Épicerie Comptoir 3734 Rue Notre-Dame O, Montréal, H4C 1P7 (Saint Henri)

This corner bistro/boutique food store serves a small menu of upscale comfort foods on a beautiful sidewalk terrace that boasts some of Montreal's best people-watching. The grocery store section is filled with products and produce from a multitude of local vendors, and the restaurant cooks with the same fresh ingredients daily. The regular menu features comfort foods like bacon grilled cheese alongside more adventuresome options like kimchi hot dogs and grilled octopus. Brunch service on the weekend is especially popular, with some of the best egg dishes in the city. The little space fills up quickly, so be sure to make a reservation.

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7. Régine Café 1840, rue Beaubien Est, Montreal, H2G 1L6 (Rosemont)

This popular resto/cafe serves up tasty breakfasts, brunches, and lunches every day of the week using local flavors. If you're looking for something a bit out of the ordinary, order their breakfast poutine.

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8. Le Cartet 106 Rue McGill, Montreal, H2Y 2E5

This hip Downtown spot serves up seriously good breakfast and brunch items, at prices that won't empty your wallet.

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9. Beautys Luncheonette 93 Ave. du Mont-Royal Ouest, Montreal, H2T 2S5

Montreal is a city that loves tradition, and Beautys Luncheonette is about as traditional as they come. Set in a retro 1940s space, Beautys is perfect for indulgent breakfasts and brunches, or just a smoothie in one of their old-school booths.

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10. Ludger 4001 Notre-Dame Ouest, Montréal, (Saint Henri)

Blending Art Nouveau details with a modern aesthetic, this trendy eatery offers refined takes on European-tinged fare like steak tartare, burrata, house-made pasta, and oysters. Sunday brunch is especially popular thanks to decadent plates like eggs Benedict and a standout chicken-and-egg sandwich, but specialty cocktails and a curated wine list make Ludger a solid option for an intimate and relaxed dinner any night of the week.

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11. Fabergé 25, avenue Fairmount Ouest, Montreal, H2T 2L9 (Mile End)

If you're in the Mile End neighborhood, there aren't a lot of places that can beat Faberge when it comes to a quality breakfast. And be sure to hit up their bar for smoothies, fresh juices, mimosa,s and a variety of coffees and teas.

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12. Prohibition 5674 Monkland, Montréal, (Notre Dames Des Graces)

Nestled in a cozy, chalkboard-walled basement, Prohibition is your go-to for delicious brunch and comfort food in Notre-Dame des Grâces. A steady flock of hipsters return every weekend for standouts like the challah French toast with fried chicken and pancakes with candied bacon, but dinner proves wholly satisfying as well, boasting rich yet simple dishes like basil-tomato gnocchi and pork belly with celery root purée.

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13. Salmigondis 6896 Saint-Dominique, Montreal, H2S 3B1 (Petite Italie)

After garnering enough praise for its dinners to last chef Brian Peters a lifetime, Salmigondis decided to venture into brunch and lunch territory, somehow becoming even more popular in the process. The hefty price tag says a lot about the quality of fare served here, where you'll find dishes like deer tartare, gnocchi bursting with umami, piglet bavette, and a damn good steak plate.

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14. Bagel Etc. 4320 boul. Saint-Laurent, Montréal, H2W 1Z3

Bagel Etc. is a diner/cafe that's known for its brunch specials, and the bagels are all hand-rolled, Montreal-style. Grab a seat and admire the funky decor while you dig into your meal.

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15. Le Richmond 377 rue Richmond, Montréal, H3J 1T9 (Griffintown)

This upscale, Italian-influenced restaurant is right at home in hip Griffintown. Set in a gigantic, airy loft with distinct industrial overtones, Le Richmond serves up fresh seafood, homemade pastas, and sous-vide meats, all with seasonal ingredients sourced from local farms. The dining room is full of natural light that highlights the angular, modern furniture, and there are another 90 seats out on the terrace. Reservations are definitely in your best interest, and be forewarned: Le Richmond won't let you drink without ordering food as well.

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16. Lavanderia 374 Victoria, Montréal, H3Z 2N4

Chef Anthony Park stays true to his Argentinian background with Lavanderia, a bright Westmount spot known for its thick cuts of grilled fish and meats, and fresh ceviches. The artful and airy South American restaurant has flair in the form of floral prints hung by clothes pins on high white walls, and in the precise dishes that show off Park's reputation for impeccable plating.

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17. Le Bon Vivant 2705 Notre-Dame O, Montréal, H3J 1N9 (Saint Henri)

This bright industrial-style restaurant is cooking up food from across the globe -- we're talking everything from lamb curry and salmon tartare to soba salad and a bacon cheeseburger. With a menu that eclectic, it's not surprising that Le Bon Vivant's kitchen switches things up pretty often, but the brunch, lunch, and dinner dishes always deliver -- especially the sizzling Mexican breakfast skillet piled high with cheese, tortillas, and house-made salsa.

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18. Restaurant Santa Barbara 6696 Rue de Saint Vallier, Montreal, H2S 2P7 (Petite Italie)

This fine resto specializes in vegetarian fare, but be sure to try out some of their unique craft cocktails (like the Cocktail en Vedette with tequila, honey, lemon, and sage) in addition to your veggie-centric meal.

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