A raw deal: The best uncooked dishes in town

Setting aside the purported health benefits of consuming animal flesh in its pure, unadulterated form, it can actually taste absolutely fabulous! Far from pushing restaurants that suggest a chiefly raw menu, the following list is simply a roundup of spots serving standout raw dishes – excluding sushi – from tartares and crudos to tatakis and ceviches. [image credit: iStock/MiguelMalo]

Grinder

1
1708 rue Notre-Dame O, Montréal, QC H3J 1M3

Following the Plateau’s Hachoir, the same principals opened Grinder in burgeoning Griffintown, serving raw and cooked meat and seafood of all kinds. The modern, avant-garde interior is complemented by the beautiful terrace nestled between the restaurant and its neighboring building. Raw-o-philes looking for a fun night out will enjoy the assortment of carpaccios, tatakis and tartares on offer.

Le Jellyfish

2
626, rue Marguerite-d'Youville, Montréal, QC H3C 1W7

A smoking hot relative newcomer to the Old Montreal scene, helmed by 2015 Chopped Canada winner Mathieu Masson Duceppe, Le Jellyfish suggests a two-part menu composed of raw appetizers followed by charcoal-grilled main dishes. The former lists oysters, salmon belly and shrimp ceviche, salmon and beef tartar, duck tataki and tuna crudo.

Restaurant Mezcla

3
1251, rue de Champlain, Montréal, QC H2L 2R9

Opened to critical acclaim in 2012, Mezcla suggests a nuevo latino cuisine using produits du terroir. While the menu is very seasonal and changes often, their signature ceviche mixto is a mainstay; and aren’t we glad for that! You’ll find a generous portion of squid and fish swimming in a leche de tigre sauce, served with fried sweet potato and yuca shavings, canchas and white corn for garnish and texture. Heard enough?

Belon Oyster Bar

4
1101 Rue De Bleury, Montréal, QC H2Z 1N1

After years spent supplying Montreal’s finest restaurants with the best oysters out there, shucker extraordinaire Daniel Notkin opened his eponymous Old Montreal seafood restaurant in 2014. Stop by for happy hour or dinner and be sure to take advantage of the central wrap-around bar to witness all the shucking action. Besides oysters, there’s bound to be raw fish on the menu in the form of crudo or tartare.

Restaurant Emiliano’s

5
260 rue Notre-Dame O, Montréal, QC H2Y 1T3

Open since June 2016, Emiliano’s is a newcomer attempting to revolutionize our conception of Mexican cuisine. The menu promotes the country’s rich, diverse culinary heritage from its origins and influences to regional flavours. The spicy octopus ceviche is bound to please, featuring aguachile marinated octopus, red cherry tomatoes, pickled red onions and avocados; ¡Ay, caramba!

Every passing year confirms the death of fine dining as we once knew it.  Small, affordable, made-to-share plates have cut across all cuisines and eased their way into the upper echelon of Montreal’s newcomers for 2017.  Fall may be creeping in on us soon, but there’s still plenty of time to try one of our suggestions below – the places that caught our attention, for better or for worse. (Added suggestions by Kelsey Rolfe)
It comes as no surprise that Montreal’s local food movement is a force to be reckoned with. As a result, scores of chefs have jumped on the bandwagon; some do it out of an ideological drive, others to satisfy an increasingly demanding and scrutinizing clientele. The following list of restaurants place an emphasis on sourcing locally, relying heavily on nearby farms, game and fishing. [Image credit: iStock]
Montreal’s rich and complex dining scene goes through its fair share of fads and trends every couple years. Of late, we’ve witnessed an explosion in Japanese izakayas, which were followed by Neapolitan pizzerias and more recently taquerias. The following list showcases our city’s various takes on the Mexican staple, from its most traditional form to experimental renditions that are bound to amaze. [Image credit: iStock]
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