A couple of things to know about the restaurants in Montreal. (1) It’s expensive to eat here. Plan on spending about $20 per person, per meal. More if you go for desserts and appetizers. Don’t skimp – you’re on vacation. Just plan for it. (2) There is no early morning vegan breakfast anywhere that I could find. So pick something up at the grocery store for the morning. See my previous post for where to find the good grocery stores in Montreal.
Here are the restaurants in Montreal that I tried, in order of preference:
- Aux Vivres – Hands down, my favorite. We ate here more than any other restaurant. Weekend brunch is worth checking out as well. Everything is 100% vegan and they also have gluten-free, nut-free, and soy-free options labeled. I tried a bite of the chocolate apple cake, which was sensational.
- Zero 8 – This restaurant doesn’t use any of the top 8 most common food allergens. This means that any vegetarian item on their menu is also vegan, including the desserts (which are amazing, by the way). They also ask you if you have any other food allergies so they can make sure not to let you order something that will make you sick. The food here was excellent. It was pretty expensive though. With tax and tip, and ordering 2 entrees, 2 drinks, 1 dessert, and 1 appetizer, we spent $70. Worth it, but be forewarned.
- Lola Rosa – A hippie Mexican style restaurant near the college. The food was very good, but they don’t have any kind of cheese substitutes. Our waiter, who I think is also the owner, was extremely nice and helpful. Not much in the way of appealing gluten-free options.
- Ming Tao Xuan - Actually a tea shop but it serves a few food items. Makes for a nice light dinner. I enjoyed this place quite a lot, but the limited menu kept me from going here too often.
- Le Commensal – This is a chain with several vegetarian cafeteria-style restaurants around the city. The food really isn’t very good, but they get points for variety and for thorough labeling of all their items.
- Yuan - Chinese mock meat kind of place. The food was decent. The ambiance could definitely be improved. If you’re having a fake meat craving, it’s a good place to go. They have a gluten-free mock duck that’s very enjoyable.
- Liquid Nutrition – It’s just a mall kiosk that serves smoothies, but it serves really good smoothies. And they have Vega brand protein powder available. They also have those Vega chocolate-saviseed protein bars that I am currently addicted to, plus other energy bars as well. Not terribly exciting food, but this place was a lifesaver for me when I was looking for something healthy to eat.
- Le Panthere – Soups and pita sandwiches. Not really my kind of place. I did have an good falafel pita, and the pita bread was really really good (which made my gluten hangover almost worth it). They have a few raw food snacks as well. I probably should have given this place more of a chance.
- Mikado – Sushi place that I went to with a couple of omnivores. I tried some veggie rolls. It was good, just like any other sushi place really.