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Bits and Bites

Bits and Bites

Le Continental: Continental living at its best
Photo: Kate Hutchinson

Le Continental
(4169 St-Denis, 514-845-6842)

I’ve gone to Le Continental so often I almost forget how fun the décor is. Hearkens back to the golden era of the silver screen with its art deco and filmic homage to early air travel and globalization. Each week there are innovative takes on bistro fare, but also look to their solid regular menu with good standards like bavettes and tartares of beef or horse (my fave!), a hearty lamb shank, poached organic salmon, a few pastas and salads. The soups never fail me, nice wine list, and I always feel at home. Visit their fussy but entertaining website at www.lecontinental.ca. Fade to black… 4/5 (Maeve Haldane)

Lester’s
(1057A Bernard W., 514-213-1313)

One of our last classic delicatessens, Lester’s boasts authenticity and pure deliciousness every visit. Their smoked meat is the thin-sliced, tender kind (rather than thick, crumbly slabs of brisket), generously layered on perfectly fresh rye with mustard. It’s their own smoked meat (a rarity these days), and the fries, pickles, coleslaw and just about everything else on the menu are consistently great. Some of my favourite things to order are their hot dogs, karnatzel on the grill, and the smoked salmon, which is exceptional and made especially for Lester’s, but really pricey. The old-time deli atmosphere, good service and solid food bring back a time when great Jewish delis were easy to find here and smoked meat wasn’t something you went for at Nickels. 3/5 (Howard Chackowicz)

Tokyo Sukiyaki
(7355 Mountain Sights; 514-737-7245)

Hidden among a pack of auto-repair body shops and tire dealers, you would never know that a serene Japanese scene awaits you inside these doors. After removing your footwear (and donning flip-flops) to enter a Japanese garden complete with bridges and streams, kimono-clad waitresses lead you to your private room outfitted with tatami mats and shoji screens. This is where the fantasy ends. You are then fed an array of extremely bland Japanese food fit only for tourists looking for a taste of Japan in Montreal. Aside from the sushi, most of the set dinners consist of the same items (noodle salad, lukewarm miso soup, chicken yakitori, beef teriyaki, shrimp tempura etc.) served as appetizers, the only difference being that the main course comes on a larger plate. Sayonara. 1/5 (Peter Horowitz)

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