Montreal Weekender: November 18th through 20th, 2011

This weekender is dedicated to the downtown (centreville) and Chinatown core. Oftentimes we try to zone in on a notable neighbourhood in Montreal, vibrant with culture, good eats, and fun things to explore. Now it’s the core’s turn to wow you. (And it also probably happens to be where a lot of our young professional readers work!) Montreal’s downtown is the city’s main business district – full of banks and office buildings in addition to large department stores, our famous hockey arena, and of course Chinatown. On the weekends, this area comes alive in a different way than during the week, and here’s how you should totally spend your weekend downtown…

Friday night book yourself a table at Restaurant Europea. Nestled on Montagne just below St. Catherine, Restaurant Europea takes over a beautiful townhouse where chef and co-owner Jerome Ferrer offers up decadent French fare. Opt for the table d’hote that is basically Ferrer’s classic four course ‘discovery menu’. It’s affordable and delicious. After dinner head to Dominion Square Tavern for cocktails and schmooze amongst Montreal’s coolest and most beautiful people.

Saturday morning take in brunch at Le Renoir in the Sofitel Hotel. You will need to splurge for this meal, but it’s well worth it. We suggest anything off of their ‘light’ menu (especially their egg whites on top of multigrain toast topped with mushrooms and sun-dried tomatoes). Spend the afternoon walking and shopping (specifically, head to the Cours De Montreal, Montreal’s famed underground mall that boasts some very cool and unique one-of-a-kind boutique clothing shops). Take in a movie at the Scotiabank Theatre in the late afternoon. Book yourself a late dinner at Ferreira Cafe, Montreal’s premiere Portuguese fine dining restaurant (maybe even one of the best Portuguese restaurants in all of Canada). We suggest the porcini-crusted roasted black cod with a port reduction and mashed potatoes. Spend the night partying at Cavalli just up the street. This swanky supper club is always packed with notable people ready to dance and drink the night away.

Sunday start the day off with lunch at m:brgr, Montreal’s hot spot for burgers and salads. Build your own burger and make sure to order a side of their famous sweet potato fries (with chipotle dipping sauce). Or if you are feeling adventurous, tackle their pogo and or Michigan Hot Dog. Take a walk to Chinatown and stop into all the fun Chinese grocery and specialty stores. Have a mid afternoon dim sum snack at La Maison Kam Fung, located in the second level of a small commercial centre. This is truly one of the best spots in the city for dim sum (and it closes at 3pm, so make sure to get there early). Spend the rest of the day walking the streets and taking in the final days of no-snow and semi-warmness.

Image courtesy stock.xchang.