Le Chien Fumant is one of many bistro-like Montreal restaurants, located on the Plateau.
Hidden at the corner of rue Gilford and rue de Lanaudiere, this is not the kind of place you’d just stumble upon. If you do however, then your chances of getting a seat are pretty slim… With only 30-40 seats, Le Chien Fumant seems to be always packed on Friday and Saturday nights. Reservation advised 🙂
The menu written on a chalkboard gets you salivating even before ordering. After a bit of debating, we settled on 2 starters and 2 mains we would share. I found out later that the restaurant also offers the option to get the chef’s recommendations based on a price you are willing to pay per guest. Thought that was pretty cool but we’d already ordered, so maybe next time. No regret with our choices anyways. Everything was great, but the Calamari Chinatown was probably the dinner’s highlight.
The Calamari Chinatown tasted like a fattoush (Lebanese salad with mixed greens, mint, etc.) but with a sweet Asian sauce and crispy calamari to top it up. The combination of taste and texture was really well balanced. It was definitely a hit.
Takoyaki is a famous Japanese Octopus ball snack, usually served with a dark sauce (Worcestershire X Mayonnaise) and dried fish sprinkled on top. Chien Fumant’s version was authentic but the balls were a bit dense and I have to say better versions can be found in Japanese restaurants.
This was a beautiful dish of homemade pasta with sweet squash and pancetta cooked to perfection. Crunchy dried chickpeas sprinkled over the top created a little surprise effect in every bite. The combination was delicious; so good indeed, that my partner barely let me try it. That’s always a good sign (well it depends for who! ;)).
The fish was delicious. Two generous fish filets were served accompanied by a very original sauce that spiced up the dish without taking away its true flavor. Yummy.
After the mains, we had no spaced left for desert. The servings were very generous compared to the stingy portions you sometimes get at fancy restaurants.
Le Chien Fumant feels like a cosy & homey tavern. That’s always my favorite combination, great food X unpretentious atmosphere. The service reflected that as well, with an attentive yet discrete waiter.
Le Chien Fumant got all A’s: Good portions, great taste, relaxed vibe.
Too bad it’s not a BYO because the 2 glasses of wine we had made the bill go up quite a bit. So Chien Fumant is not going to become our local, but it’s a great address to have up your sleeve when you want to make an impression on that special someone 😉
Dinner for 2 + 2 glasses of wine cost us 130$ (tip included).
Le Chien Fumant is now up there on my list of bistro favorites and I intend to go back for brunch soon enough. I will keep you posted.