Andrew Zimmern's Guide to Montreal
Montreal, one of North America's most beautiful cities, is a glorious collision of cultures. Few places in the world can say they are as authentically multicultural as Montreal, one of the largest French-speaking cities on the planet.
According to Bizarre Foods host Andrew Zimmern, Montreal inspires some of his most deeply resonant lost weekends. There is no city on earth better geared for a weekend of madly obsessive chowing down than the Quebecois pleasure dome of Montreal. And it’s not just Montreal’s finest eateries that plug into the aesthetic of indulgence, but the casual joints as well.
The Montreal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport, located about 12 miles west of Montreal, is the major domestic and international air hub for the region. Car rentals, taxis, shuttles and buses are available to take you where you need to go.
Once you get to Montreal, you’ll have to plan how to explore this magnificient city. You don’t really need a car to get around town, but having one is by no means a drawback, considering that the road system is straightforward, parking is easy to come by, and traffic is limited to rush hours and even then, the only headaches are on the major expressways.
The Société de Transport de Montreal controls the metro and bus lines in the city, which run from around 5:30 a.m. until just after midnight. More than 150 bus routes complement the subway system, including an array of night buses. Also check out the 6 commuter train lines. And from late spring to mid-October, ferries cruise the St. Lawrence River between Old Port, St. Helen’s Island and Longueuil.
Montreal is ranked as one of the most bike-friendly cities. The setup of bike lanes makes pedaling to your destination an effective form of transport. You can also take a leisurely ride around Mount Royal, along the Lachine Canal or on the trails and roads on St. Helen’s Island.
Where to Go
Andrew shops with chef Fred Morin for some ingredients at the cheese shop and butcher shop at this market.
Address: 138 Atwater Ave, Montreal, Quebec H4C 2H6134
Where to Eat
Andrew visits the Plateau neighborhood and stops at this bagel shop, where he gets a lesson on how to make fresh bagels the old-fashioned way.
Address: 74 Fairmount W, Montreal, Quebec H2T 2M2
Boutique Canards du Lac Brome
(Lake Brome Duck Deli)
Duck is a very popular meat in Quebec. Andrew checks out the favorite spot to get it.
Address: 176 Jean-Talon St E, Montreal, Quebec H2R 1S7
Cooking Channel host and chef Nadia Giosia takes Andrew to meet up with the co-stars of her show Nadia G's Bitchin' Kitchen at a restaurant that’s a little more mainstream and that serves all kinds of poutine.
Address: 994 Rue Rachel Est, Montreal, Quebec H2J 2J3
Cabane a Sucre au Pied de Cochon
Andrew visits the farm where renowned chef Martin Picard taps his maple trees for syrup and raises pigs for meat for his restaurant, Cabane a Sucre au Pied de Cochon.
Address: 11382 Rang de la Fresniere, St-Benoit de Mirabel, Quebec J7N 2R9
Andrew visits one of Montreal’s flagship restaurants for a semiannual event known as the Butcher Blackout. The chef prepares 80 pounds of meat for 15 people.
Address: 2491 Rue Notre-Dame W, Montreal, Quebec H3J 1N6
This deli is famous for its smoked meat, the Quebec version of pastrami. Andrew and Nadia G sink their teeth into a smoked beef sandwich.
Address: 3895 Saint-Laurent Blvd, Montreal, Quebec H2W 1X9
Andrew visits this Lebanese butcher shop and kitchen with Adam Gollner, an author who’s intimate with the Montreal food scene.
Address: 733 Cote-Vertu Blvd, Saint-Laurent, Montreal, Quebec H4L 1Y3
Au Cinquieme Peche (The Fifth Sin)
Andrew goes to a restaurant where the featured item is seal meat.
Address: 4475 Rue Saint-Denis, Montreal, Quebec H2J 2L2
Where to Stay
Sofitel Montreal Golden Mile
This 5-star hotel in downtown Montreal is located in the heart of the historic city, near renowned McGill University, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, other art galleries and luxurious shopping venues.
Address: 1155 Sherbrooke W, Montreal, Quebec H3A 2N3