Now Open: Joverse On Saint Jacques

With the hot weather and summer just around corner, the timing couldn’t be more perfect for Old Montreal to welcome a new hot-spot to the neighbourhood. Joverse opened its doors this Thursday night for the first time and the feedback has been nothing short of amazing.The concept behind Joverse is to be a place where you can stimulate your senses. In an atmosphere recalling the one of an open lounge, with an industrial and stylish decor and a warm ambiance, Joverse is set to become the ideal urban restaurant for young professional express business lunches, happy hours and festive evenings. We caught up with the minds behind Joverse to get the scoop on the concept, design, menu and their insane sound system.

What’s the concept behind Joverse?
The name Joverse is the resulting combination of two words, Joseph Versailles who was both a French Canadian entrepreneur and the mayor of Montreal East. He lead an amazing life filled with incredible accomplishments and happened to live at 52 St-Jacques (home to Joverse). Keeping that in mind, we’re trying to recreate the feeling of being ‘home’ coupled with a sense of history.

First, we gutted the space and employed a floor plan that embodied an open concept feel with subtle sections throughout.  We wanted to ensure that there was a sense of movability throughout and tried to defy the general rules of restaurant and club design.  Joverse has a sense of openness about it to encourage the idea of social interaction.

Who are the masterminds behind it? 
It’s been a democratic project from the start with every professional involved in the creative process in order to make the best decision. This house was built in 1730, so everything was irregular and all the more challenging when it came to the design and build process.

In terms of design, our main man was Guillaume Menard from Atelier Mainor.  Menard made the lamps, tables and chairs and helped create the world of industrial-chic design that is Joverse. Nothing has been ordered or bought in a store for Joverse, it is all unique with a special story to tell. All materials we used were raw and solid, something we hope Joverse will come to be known as: timeless and unique! 

The operations were defined by very old legal permits from the Regie des Alcohols and we had to respect them in order to keep them. Drawing on original ideas found from travelling the world and seeking out the best, most unique restaurant bars and hotels, we wanted to give Joverse a New York feel coupled with European soul. 

The general idea is to offer a complete experience featuring the best of the best, with top food, the best DJs, the best sound system and a unique design.  Our sense of passion and vision is written all over Joverse! 

What can people expect from the menu? 
Guests can expect small, fun plates to share at night.  We’ll adapt our menu to consistently feature local seasonal products with an emphasis placed on simplicity and freshness.  We don’t have a lot of meat-based dishes, but definitely feature something to suit all tastes and appetites. Visit our summer menu on our website. We are open for bistro-style lunch weekly.

Do you cater to a specific clientele? 
Our space has been described as a place for trendy, professional and upscale clientele… and we’re comfortable with that.

We heard that you have one of the best sound systems in the entire city… 
It is made in Italy and called the K-Array – represented by Sennheiser. It offers the absolute best in sound and design with a clean and loud sound.  Its sleek design houses 12 watts ever so discreetly.  Come here, have fun and try to locate the speakers! 

Does that also mean there will be great DJs popping by?
The most experienced DJs of Montreal will play their amazing collection of music here. Look for DJs such as Christian Pronovost, Maus, Pat Boogie, Mighty Kat and Soundshaper to make an appearance. We’ll invite international guests for special occasions and also feature live musical acts.  We plan to have a stage on the main floor featuring live bands too!

What are your hours and days of operation?
We are open for lunch, Monday through Friday and dinner Friday and Saturday nights, closed Sunday. Private party bookings are also available.

You had your grand opening last night, what has the feedback been so far?
It took us over two years to get this project up and running. It is all the hard work of various architects, engineers, designers and contractors and the city permits which saw this dream come to a realization. Honestly, just to see people inside enjoying themselves is awesome – but hearing them say great things and seeing the feedback on social media is- in all humbleness – such a reward for all this hard work!