Opened in December of 2009, Le Chien Fumant is both a restaurant than a bar, more so leaning towards the latter with an impressive array of cocktails on the menu. There are so many things that make Chien notable; the bottles and pans hanging from the ceiling make it feel new and homey at the same time and the food is amazing, with a constantly changing menu and a wide variety of choices. Le Chien Fumant is quite simply impressive all around. Let’s get to why Le Chien is one of the best bars in the city.
Cocktails. Cocktails, cocktails, cocktails. It seems truly impossible that there’s a place in Montreal that makes better mixed and specialty drinks. You’re greeted with their cocktail list of the day as soon as you sit down at Le Chien. Usually the list has about 10 options: the house Gin & Tonic, Pimm’s Cup, French 75, Old Fashioned…the list goes on. If you want something that you don’t see, just ask. The bartender and Co-Owner Nick Gamache will have no trouble whipping up whatever challenge you can give him. The ingredients are incredibly fresh, too. If you order anything with ginger, expect fresh ginger in your drink, which will be crushed with the baseball bat you see hanging from the bar. If you ask for a Campari and grapefruit, expect that grapefruit juice to be freshly squeezed. If you order the house Gin & Tonic, expect to be disappointed when it doesn’t taste as good anywhere else. You know that there’s effort being put into your cocktail when the bartender garnishes the drink by either rubbing mint leaves on the edge of the glass or burns an orange peel over top of the cup.
If you’re at Le Chien Fumant, chances are you aren’t going to be able to resist having a little snack…or an entire meal, for that matter. Co-Owner and Head Chef Max Morin of Joe Beef will delight you with not only his culinary treats, but also his amazing energy while cooking. If you’re lucky you’ll catch him dancing along to the fun music playing in the background. One last tip: if it’s you’re first time at Le Chien Fumant, try to get a seat at the bar so you can watch all the magic happening right in front of you.
Photo courtesy Le Chien Fumant