Summer certainly won't be as enjoyable for the cigarette-smokers of Montreal (which is almost everyone) as the smoking ban on terrasses is officially coming into effect quite soon. And with this current weather, it looks like smokers might only have one or two days to enjoy a smoke and a drink in the sun before it becomes illegal.
Announced on the Association des restaurateurs du Québec website, smoking anything on a terrasse (cigarette, vap, joint) in Montreal will be banned as of May 26th, 2016.
Some may have thought that in a city with such a strong smoking culture, that this would ever happen, but alas, it is has.
Shouts of "this totally sucks" rang out in our office when everyone was reminded of the smoking ban announced last year, and no doubt many of you will feel the same.
Sorry, smokers, but it is a lost battle.
For non-smokers like myself, we can't help but be mildly happy that having to deal with second-hand smoke while enjoying a pint on a terrasse will be a thing of the past, but I doubt you really want to hear that. Sorry not sorry.
I must admit, I had never been to New City Gas (I moved here during the pandemic — please forgive me), so I had no idea what to expect. The first thing I thought was, "WOW, this space is so cool!" We walked into the lobby-bar and I was instantly taken by the exposed brick and hanging lights, which created a boho-chic Mykonos-esque aesthetic. Of course, that included a hanging bed.
We stepped inside and walked through the mysterious yet cozy and inviting interior complete with mirrors and candles galore. Before entering the restaurant, we passed through the artisanal marketplace, featuring goods from Meraki, a Laval-based boutique filled with handmade goods and imported treasures from Greece.
Next, we headed into the restaurant, which is so spectacularly done that it feels like one of the most high-end, chic spots on the Island of Montreal but with a totally relaxed and laid-back vibe. Thanks to the decor — complete with hanging baskets, long tables, neutral tones and vibrant greenery — you truly feel like you're in Tulum or in Greece.
We tucked ourselves in for a four-course meal by Chef Massimo Piedimonte of Le Mousso. We were told that the menu was "a tour through the Mediterranean": tapas, a fish course, a meat course, and dessert. Paired with drinks prepared by sommelier Maxime Laliberté of Maison Boulud and mixologist Lawrence Picard of Nectar & Co., I was in absolute heaven.
Between courses, we checked out the open-air gallery outside by S16 and the NFT Gallery by 0x Society, which is actually the first of its kind in Canada. Both of these will be available all summer long.
When the sun went down and the lights came on, the ambiance was even more spectacular. Co-owner Alex K. told me the team was inspired by their travels to places like Tulum and Mykonos, not just for their food and culture, but for the way they exude positive summer vibes. And that's exactly what I got from Bazart from start to finish!
Address: At the corner of boulevards Saint-Laurent and René-Lévesque, Chinatown, Montreal
Why You Need To Go: Montreal always has a way of coming to life and night and the new installation "Place des Souhaits" simply adds to it. The wish tree part of the piece twinkles at night! It's also set up next to a patio where you can spend your day chilling.
Why You Need To Go: Seven spaces along avenue Mont-Royal will be recreating colourful urban gardens for the rest of the summer. You'll be able to find a colourful skate park, a light and shadow garden, a rose mural, and other unique spots to check out.
When: Every day until September 6 from 7 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Address: Place des Commencements; 200, rue de la Commune O., Montréal, QC
Why You Need To Go: You can find Place des Commencements located at the end of the Grand Quai in Old Montreal, which has a lovely beautiful green terrasse where you can sit on chairs and admire Habitat 67 and the Jacques-Cartier Bridge.
Where: Saint James United Church, 463, rue Sainte-Catherine O., Montreal, QC
When: June 4 to September 26, 2021
Why You Need To Go: Yes, you read that right — just outside Saint James United Church is the coolest sandy beach hangout, where you can even bring booze. It's the most relaxing place to chill in the middle of the downtown core.
The menu is 100% decadent. You can try, among other things, a "Croque-madame", blueberry and bacon pancakes, eggs benedict with salmon gravlax, a mushroom omelette or the "Full English breakfast" with eggs, sausages, blood pudding, baked beans, tomatoes and potatoes.
Not counting the drinks, the price of the brunches varies between $13 and $19, which is pretty reasonable.
By the way, if brunch is not your cup of tea, you can always come and enjoy Wolf & Workman's terrasse for lunch and dinner. The option is yours!
Bottomless Mimosas at Wolf & Workman
Price: $35 for all-you-can-drink mimosa, plus $13 to $19 for brunch
When: Weekends from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Address: 139, rue St. Paul O., Montreal, QC
Why You Should Go: Who can say no to endless mimosas on a pretty terrasse?