- Below is a list of 21 restaurants and bars in Montreal to take your favourite person — partner, best friend, mother, lover — on a wine date.
- Each location offers a unique menu and atmosphere.
You don't have to look too hard to find a good spot to grab a glass of wine in Montreal. I'm pretty sure you could throw a stone from wherever you may be standing and hit a restaurant. But if you're looking to imbibe somewhere unique, and trust your taste buds to some of Canada's best sommeliers, then it's Montreal's wine and resto-bars that you should focus on.
Quebecers are the biggest alcohol consumers in Canada and as of last year, we spent the second-highest sales value of wine, coming in only behind Ontario. Considering our vast population difference, suffice it to say Quebec loves its wine.
Montreal is home to some of the best wine bars and menus worldwide, be it whites, reds, oranges or the ever-growing popularity of bio and natural producers.
With the SAQ's stronghold on limited wine choices, restaurants have stepped up their game to include private imports you can't buy in a store and smaller producers that are difficult to find most anywhere.
From chic upscale bars to neighbourhood haunts, Montreal covers every base of decor and palate driven focus.
Next time you're in the mood to spend a little extra time sipping some of the best vintages, check out one of these 21 Montreal spots.
Where: 6961 Blvd St-Laurent
Any Little Italy restaurant worth its salt has an impressive wine list, but Signorvinomtl is a wine bar that stands a little taller. Serving wines by the glass and bottle, the atmosphere is so warm and inviting, you may as well order the latter.
Cul-Sec, Cave & Canteen
Where: 29 Rue Beaubien E.
This small wine shop stocks privately imported wines with a heavy focus on natural and organic wines. You can taste them in-restaurant or even buy a bottle to go with the purchase of a meal.
Bazarette Wine Bar
Where: Corner of Avenue-des-Canadiens-de-Montréal and Rue De La Montagne
Its proximity to the Bell Centre may not instill wine confidence, but this new wine bar and café has a pretty impressive list of sustainable agriculture, organic and natural vinos.
Where: 6778 Blvd. St-Laurent
Ratafia is not only a wine bar but a gourmet dessert one as well. Try out the degustation at $42 for three desserts that come paired with the perfect complementary drink.
La Buvette Chez Simone
Where: 4869 Ave. du Parc
This is a lively wine bar where the focus is as much on the rotating vintages as it is on the fun. Don't let the simple food menu turn you away, each dish is meant for impact.
Where: 551 Rue Saint-Martin
Known for its elegant decor and superior service, this is the perfect place to bring your favourite person. As is increasingly popular, the wine list leans heavily to natural, organic, and bio-dynamic choices.
Where: 4005 Rue Notre Dame O.
Mostly known for its cocktails, this chic yet casual St Henri bar has a small wine list with a little something for everyone, including white, red, orange, and bubbles. While there is no food list, if you're hungry you can order from Venice MTL just next door.
Where: 5001 Rue Notre-Dame O.
Notre-Dame has no shortages of wine bars but Bar Loïc is a must stop for any oenophile. The list is small and relies on imported natural, bio, agro-biological and/or certified organic wines.
Where: 3424 Ave. du Parc
Pullman is all about wine, from its extravagant wine glass chandelier to over 500 bottles in its renowned cellar. If you only want a taste, you can choose from 50 wines served by the glass.
Vin Mon Lapin
Where: 150 Rue Saint-Zotique
This tiny bar (it only seats 30) is the fourth restaurant from the Joe Beef group. Serving up only natural wines, Mon Lapin has managed to import wines that are difficult to find in the rest of Canada.
Le Vin Papillon
Where: 2519 Rue Notre-Dame O.
Another resto to add to the Joe Beef group, Vin Papillon is a lesson in patience. You can't make reservations and due to its popularity, there is almost always a wait time. But from experience, the wine and food are exceptional and worth every minute standing in line.
Where: 196 Rue Fleury O.
The sommeliers have done their homework well: this Ahuntsic resto-bar has won the Wine Spectator magazine award every year since 2014. With over 100 private imports in its cellar, it may be best to just trust the professionals to lead you in the right direction.
Where: 626 Rue Marguerite d'Youville
This Old Port restaurant has a pretty diverse selection of privately imported bottles. Don't let the location or decor scare you off. While it's high-end dining, many of the bottles are reasonably priced.
Le Rouge Gorge
Where: 1234 Ave. du Mont-Royal E.
You can spend hundreds of dollars at this Plateau wine bar or you can enjoy a bottle in the $40 mark. The wine list is extensive and while it covers every wine-growing region it does tend to focus on the Languedoc region of France.
Where: 4105 Blvd. St-Laurent
La Majestique deserves a mention not only for its wine list which is mostly comprised of private import wines from artisanal growers, but also because of its late-night closing hour — 3 a.m.
Where: 9 Ave. Fairmount E.
The name may not scream fine wine but Larry's has a great selection of natural wines and private imports. And you can drop in for a glass any day of the week.
Where: 1231 Ave. Lajoie
Alma is unique in its wine preferences, so don't expect a wine list from around the globe. One of the owners is a sommelier and is a huge fan of natural Catalan wines, expect to sample wines that aren't available in the SAQ.
Where: 1226 Ave. Van Horne
This is a great place to take a date or sip your wine alone. The overall feel is rather intimate and you'll find a great selection of sommelier curated red, white, and orange wines
Where: 29 Rue Beaubien O.
There are only 25 seats in this wine bar and restaurant. The servers and chefs will help you perfectly complement the tapas-style food menu with amazing select wines.
Where: 1290 Rue Beaubien E.
The name kind of says it all. But the decor is as much as a reason to visit as is the Nordic-themed wine menu. Many of the wines are from the Czech Republic, Germany and Slovakia, and Austria but you can also expect a few bottles from eastern Canada too.
Where: 1201 Blvd St-Laurent
You can check out the gastronomic experience of the Society for Arts and Technology at Foodlab. The wine list is curated with great thought and is 100% biodynamic and natural.
That's it. Time to get your drink on. Santé!