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L’atelier d’Argentine – Old Montreal’s newest “must”

by Kamila Karwowski September 18, 2012
L’atelier d’Argentine – Old Montreal’s newest “must”

In a cosmopolitan city such as ours, we are being spoilt for choice when it comes to where to eat and drink. Montreal had not hosted a truly unique Argentinian restaurant until a group of passionate restaurateurs opened l’Atelier d’Argentine in the Old Port last month.

A true reflection of Buenos Aires’ vibrant, yet unpretentious restaurant and lounge scene, l’Atelier d’Argentine proves to be an exciting new destination for Montrealers and tourists alike.

In as little a month, the restaurant has become a popular destination whether it is for a casual dinner, a weekend brunch, or a night out. Although the restaurant is currently in the process of hiring an executive chef, l’Atelier d’Argentine’s staff were humbled by the opportunity to work with Argentinian chef Natalia Machado, who developed the menu for the restaurant.

With its contemporary yet genuine cuisine, l’Atelier d’Argentine’s signature dishes feature Argentinian classics such as lamb, beef and seafood, all with a modern twist.

Aside from its affordable and generous cuisine, l’Atelier d’Argentine seems to have already become a preferred destination for Happy Hour, late-night dinners and partygoers.

The restaurant holds a weekly Thursday night party called Besame (“kiss me” in Spanish) to DJ music coupled with the percussion sets of Drum-Addiction.

Offering no reason to leave early, The nightly ‘happy’ Buenos Aires Hours begin at 10:30 p.m., offering a selection of entrées and main courses served for the low price of $22.50.

My personal favourites happen to be on that list: the buñuelos de espinaca (spinach and Fontina cheese fritters accompanied by a roasted garlic mustard for dipping), the gazpacho (a beet, raspberry, cucumber and tomato gastric soup served cold) and the vacio (grilled flank steak with the restaurant’s famous chimichurri & criolla sauce).

It may not be on the Buenos Aires Hours menu, but an absolute must is the mouth-watering risotto de calabaza (a ristotto made with kabocha pumpkin, arugula, goat cheese and roasted tomato). What else could a girl ask for?

Whatever you taste, l’Atelier d’Argentine is ready to cater to your needs with a wide selection of Argentinian wines, an array of Argentinian and domestic beers and an exciting list of signature cocktails such as the Fernando (Fernet Branca and cola), a classic in Buenos Aires, and the Cogote (rye whisky, root beer, and bitters).

If you find yourself in the area before noon, don’t despair. What’s better than brunch filled with anecdotes from the night before? Brunch in the Old Port with a view of the river! With an open concept, L’Atelier Argentine has glass doors, large windows and original light fixtures, creating a comfortable and trendy environment.

The brunch menu blends in perfectly with the restaurant’s omnipresent mix of modern and authentic culinary and decorative elements. I recommend the frittata (an open face goat cheese and smoked ham omelet served with a watercress salad) and the tarta de queso y puerros (a leek and goat cheese quiche served with an heirloom tomato and onion salad).

With its unique and diversified offering, and casual yet trendy concept, l’Atelier d’Argentine is a refreshing new destination in Old Montreal.  On this note, whether you are more of a brunch, lunch or late-night dinner type, l’Atelier d’Argentine will show you how it’s done… in Buenos Aires!


L’Atelier d’Argentine is located at 355 Marguerite-d’Youville, in the Old Port. 

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