Kitchen Galerie
By Michelle Trottier

An Open Kitchen

The Kitchen Galerie restaurant, located just steps from the Jean-Talon market, focuses on two strengths: the freshness of its menu's ingredients that come from the nearby market, and the unique arrangement of its interior space. The restaurant boasts an open kitchen that allows diners to not only see the chefs at work, but to be served by them as well. "It was born from an experience I had in the past at Auberge Hatley, where the chef served guests in her kitchen," explains Mathieu Cloutier, who co-owns the restaurant with Mathieu Bourdages. "I served my customers at a table of 10, with one of my friends who was the sommelier. To recapture this user-friendly concept here, the chefs, cooks and waiters serve the tables."

Mathieu Cloutier left his native France at the age of 17 to work in the restaurant business and ended up spending 10 years travelling from Quebec to places like England, Australia, Hawaii and Western Canada, "I was searching for new ways of working, of using different techniques and different flavours," he elaborates. Finally, in July 2007, he returned home and opened the Kitchen Galerie in Montreal.

As for Mathieu Bourdages, after working at Holder and Laloux, he joined the Kitchen Galerie's team in 2009 as the chef and in 2011, became one of the owner chefs.

We work with an open kitchen. It allows people to talk maybe a bit louder and see a good show at the same time. - Mathieu Cloutier, co-owner chef
The Kitchen Galerie serves French market cuisine.
Photo credit: courtesy Kitchen Galerie

Refined Market Cuisine

Kitchen Galerie serves French market cuisine guided largely by the fresh products that are available at the nearby Jean-Talon market. And although the menu changes every week, the restaurant has a few specialties, including its famous prime rib. "We make a prime rib for two, which is served from one side of the table to the other on a huge plate," explains Mathieu. "There is also a super-size option, but instead of just making it bigger, we add foie gras and truffles to the dish."

Big fans of foie gras and oysters, the chefs also like to offer other delicious dishes on their menu. To accompany these sophisticated and festive foods, the restaurant offers a wine list that evolves with the sommelier, Gabriel Gallant, who also honed his skills by travelling abroad. "This is a person who likes several kinds of flavours, a true perfectionist in his studies, and when he speaks of wine, he manages to make things simple!" explains Mathieu.

The Kitchen Gallerie is an open kitchen restaurant where the chefs and cooks serve fresh and bold market cuisine.
Photos by Michelle Trottier
The Kitchen Galerie serves French market cuisine.
Photo credit: courtesy Kitchen Galerie

A Festive Atmosphere

As a neighbourhood restaurant, the Kitchen Galerie hosts many locals, who make up about a quarter of its customers. Another 50 per cent come from the Greater Montreal and surrounding areas. As for the remaining 25 per cent, they are comprised of travellers looking for good food who hail from elsewhere in Quebec, the rest of Canada and the world. "We've seen a lot of currency from around world, so we get a lot of tourists," says Mathieu.

"People come to Kitchen Galerie for the festive atmosphere," he continues. "We work in an open kitchen, so we definitely have all the kitchen noise. It allows people to talk maybe a bit louder and see a good show at the same time — the chefs cook right in front of them. But there's also the quality of the food. What we want is to serve something outstanding, at a price that's affordable. We try to offer the best value in Montreal."

It's only the best and nothing less at Kitchen Galerie.

As a neighbourhood restaurant, the Kitchen Galerie hosts many locals.
Photos by Michelle Trottier
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