Located in the heart of Old Montreal, Babacool brings all the traditions of Middle Eastern cuisine but combines them with a futuristic twist. The restaurant — specializing in sharing plates and natural wines — looks like it could be an impeccably decorated spaceship. It's also affordable, with plates ranging from $3 to $22.
Naturally, we started off with drinks. I got the Hi Gin cocktail, made with Tanqueray, yuzu and simple syrup to refresh me on a scorching hot day and, let me tell you, it did the trick.
My friend got the Spicy Marg with Sauza Tequila, dry curuçao, chilli salt and dehydrated chilli. Honestly, the drinks were so good that we would have tried them all if we could.
Next, we moved onto appetizers. Anyone familiar with Middle Eastern cuisine knows that appetizers mean lots and lots of dipping! We tried the hummus, labneh and mouhamara — all with freshly made za'atar pita.
Now, I don't want to brag, but I've made my way through a hummus or two and I take hummus VERY seriously. So, as a self-proclaimed expert, I can easily say this was some of the best I've had in the city to date. We also got some vine leaves (my fave!).
Moving onto mains, we shared shakshouka, a halloumi salad and shrimp served with star anise, ouzo, feta, and radish. All three dishes were fresh and beyond compare. As I always say, you know a dish is incredible when you delay your last bite just so the meal lasts a little longer.
While the food was exceptional and the drinks were beautiful, my favourite part of the whole night was the staff. Hubert, our server, is the type of server who loves people and loves what he does. He made a great night even better.
We also met Sophie Chenier, who owns Babacool along with her husband Charles Manceau and restauranteur Marco Benatar. Benatar is co-owner of other popular Montreal eateries, like Jatoba and Flyjin.
Although Montreal is known for its beautiful terrasses, only one spot in our province made it into the ranking, and it's located in... Laval. So, it seems you're going to want to add LOV Laval to your "to try" list. And no need to stress if you don't feel like leaving the city, there's also a LOV in Montreal — it just didn't make OpenTable's Top 100.
Restaurants in Ontario took up the majority of the list, including eight spots in Toronto such as Amsterdam Barrel House, Cafe Belong and Paese Ristorante Bathurst St.
But, it's important to remember that OpenTable's ranking was "generated solely from diner reviews collected between June 1, 2020 and May 31, 2021."
So, let's go ahead and assume Quebecers love our terrasses so much that they simply had no time to review them.
And, yes, you'll probably need both hands just to get a grip on one because these babies are monstrous.
The 'Tacoz' at Shawarmaz are made with tannour bread, beef shawarma, fried avocado chunks, melted cheese, pickles, onions, parsley, tahini sauce, and pomegranate molasses. They're also served with a side of french fries and Mexican salsa.
It costs $13.99 for the plate.
But 'Tacoz' aren't the only unique twist on Middle Eastern cuisine that the restaurant offers.
If summer has taken a major toll on your wallet, no need to fear. MTLàTABLE is on until October 11 and thanks to this food festival, you can get some great deals on three-course meals at tons of Montreal restaurants. We found six restaurants offering table d'hôte menus for under $31 for you to indulge in this week.
This city-wide food festival helps you discover unique spots that serve table d'hôte menus made with locally-grown produce. As the fall harvest begins, restaurants will serve soups and stews that include Quebec carrots, morels, oyster mushrooms, eggplants and acorn squash. You can find the full list of participating restaurants on MTLàTABLE's website.
The perfect morning smoothie 💚 #montreal #mtlfoodie #wellness #smoothie #cafe
There's even a gift shop inside the restaurant showcasing fellow female entrepreneurs in the city because being healthy isn't just about what you put in your body, it's also about the positive vibes you give off.
Speaking of positive vibes, the decor is as luscious and vibrant as the menu itself complete with greenery on the walls, neon signs and swings that'll transport you straight to Tulum.
Whether you're just getting started on your healthy food journey or you're looking for a new spot to add to your wellness roster, Spirulina is here for you.
Cuisine: Health food, Smoothies
Address: 392, av. Victoria, Westmount, QC
Why You Need To Go: This place exudes "healthy lifestyle," inside and out!