Where To Find The Best Poutine in Montreal

Finding the best poutine in Montreal is akin to going after the Holy Grail – many have tried, but few have succeeded. The results of such quests always vary, and no one seems to agree on the final selection. Where is the best poutine in Montreal? Should we stick to proven classics, or should we venture into unknown territories? Decisions, decisions.

As a big fan of poutine myself and a Montrealer, I figured I could throw in my two cents.

Now – I don’t think that poutine is the most representative dish of Montreal because, truth be told, there’s an effervescent and quite inventive foodie scene in this town and it would be a shame to skip it in favour of this hearty classic. But you do need to have poutine once every time you visit, or at the very least, once in your lifetime.

Bon appétit!

(Keep in mind that it is very hard to make yucky poutine; whatever place you pick will more than likely make your taste buds very happy. These are just my personal favourites.)

best poutine in montreal

The Best Poutine in Montreal – The Smackdown

The Classic Experience

La Banquise (994 Rue Rachel East)

If you are only in town for a short while and want to experience poutine in the most efficient way, head to La Banquise. This restaurant is open 24/7 (although much of its clientele visits between 1AM and 5AM, because as far as hangover remedies go, poutine tops ’em all) and offers a pretty good selection for poutine neophytes and locals alike, as well as the fast-food staples of North America: hot dogs, burgers, corndogs, and onion rings. Definitely the go-to place for first-timers!

The Make-Your-Own

Poutineville (1348 Beaubien East & 1365 Rue Ontario East)

If you are feeling adventurous with your poutine and want to spice it up a little, the first place that comes to mind is Poutineville. Here, instead of ordering something off the menu, you are pretty much handed a checklist of the kitchen’s every ingredient and told to pick whatever pleases you. Oh, dear heavens. You can add anything from blue cheese to grilled zucchini to Italian sausage, or if you want to have the illusion of a healthy meal, a side salad or a veggie sandwich.

My favorite mix? Crushed potatoes with regular poutine sauce topped with bacon, frankfurters, and extra grated cheese. YUM.

The Local One

Nouveau système (323 Beaubien East)

The place probably hasn’t changed a bit since it’s opening int he 1960s. This is a common, run-of-the-mill, retro-looking Québécois greasy spoon where everyone in the neighbourhood gathers for a poutine, be it grandmothers, young families, normcore hipsters or freelancers who forgot to pick up veggies for dinner and end up getting poutine instead (hi! that’s me).

best poutine in montrealOther places where you’ll get good poutine

  • Frites Alors! (various locations)
  • Montreal Poutine (161 Saint Paul East)
  • Chez Tousignant (6956 Drolet)
  • Montreal Pool Room (1217 St. Laurent)
  • Chez Claudette (351 Laurier East )
  • Patati Patata (4177 St. Laurent)
  • Mont-Royal Hot-Dog
  • Mange-Moi (35 Mont-Royal East)

Poutines with a twist

Where is your favorite poutine in Montreal?
Have you tried any of the places listed above?

42 Comments on Where To Find The Best Poutine in Montreal

  1. Laura @Travelocafe
    April 16, 2013 at 10:39 pm (4 years ago)

    Amazing photos of great food. I am getting so hungry…

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres
      April 18, 2013 at 10:54 am (4 years ago)

      Thanks Laura! Poutine is SO good.

      Reply
  2. Andrea
    April 17, 2013 at 5:14 pm (4 years ago)

    YUM! Another reason to go to Montreal…

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres
      April 18, 2013 at 10:54 am (4 years ago)

      It’s a good enough reason on it’s own to visit Montreal :)

      Reply
  3. Amanda
    April 17, 2013 at 10:54 pm (4 years ago)

    I’m impressed that you managed to take photos of poutine that look in any way appetizing! It really isn’t the most photogenic food in the world. It’s a good thing that it tastes so darn good!

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres
      April 18, 2013 at 10:53 am (4 years ago)

      Haha, thanks! Indeed, it’s one of the many dishes that don’t look anywhere near appetizing but that end up being suuuuper good.

      Reply
  4. Naomi
    April 18, 2013 at 1:06 am (4 years ago)

    Always make the error of reading food blogs when I’m hungry, I imagine it being the best hangover cure with it being the right mix of salty and greasy calorie-laden food that you always crave!

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres
      April 18, 2013 at 10:53 am (4 years ago)

      Exactly – nothing beats a poutine at 3 in the morning after a few rounds of drinks!

      Reply
  5. Jessica
    April 19, 2013 at 2:00 am (4 years ago)

    When I’m traveling and people ask me to provide some examples of Canadian food, I always say poutine. It’s one of the things I miss most about Canada. I’ve tried La Banquise, but I’ll definitely be checking out these other places next time I’m in Montreal.

    Reply
  6. Meredith@GreenGlobalTravel
    April 19, 2013 at 5:10 am (4 years ago)

    Oh La Banquise! Take me back! So many great hungover times. Poutine really needs to catch on outside of Quebec.

    Reply
  7. Hogga
    April 30, 2013 at 7:03 pm (4 years ago)

    i would kill for a poutine right now

    Reply
  8. jill
    May 2, 2013 at 4:14 pm (4 years ago)

    Did I tell you I’m going to be in Montreal this summer? Can’t wait to try poutine! I sure hope they have vegetarian gravy though, or is that considered a travesty? :)

    Reply
  9. Steph (@ 20 Years Hence)
    May 15, 2013 at 6:25 pm (4 years ago)

    As a fellow Canadian, I obviously also love poutine, but these days, whenever I make it up to Montreal my stomach space is reserved for smoked meat! I find that you can get decent poutine even in Toronto these days, but there is no substitute for authentic Montreal smoked meat…

    Reply
  10. Aaron @ Aaron's Worldwide Adventures
    June 4, 2013 at 7:02 pm (4 years ago)

    I wasn’t a poutine fan after trying it in Vancouver a few years ago. But then my host in Montreal insisted on taking me to La Banquise for a the original classic. And O-M-G…I’m a believer now!

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres
      June 7, 2013 at 6:47 pm (4 years ago)

      Well no wonder you weren’t a fan of poutine in Vancouver… ;-)

      Reply
  11. Alouise
    June 13, 2013 at 8:46 pm (4 years ago)

    I just left Montreal yesterday, and I put out a tweet asking for restaurant suggestions and La Banquise was one listed for poutine. I did end up going, and it was really good. The cheese was nice a squeaky, which is sadly often missing when trying to get poutine out west. Next time I’m in Montreal I’ll have to give these other places a try.

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres
      June 27, 2013 at 6:50 pm (4 years ago)

      Glad you enjoyed poutine Louise! :)

      Reply
  12. Vivian Morelli
    October 7, 2013 at 2:56 pm (4 years ago)

    Ah, this post makes me so homesick!! I’m a Montrealer girl but i’ve been living in Tokyo for 4 years…. I miss poutine :( My fav was Patati-Patata, Rachel/St-Laurent

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres
      October 21, 2013 at 10:13 pm (4 years ago)

      Can we switch places? I would love to live in Toronto! :)

      Reply
  13. Kylie
    October 28, 2013 at 3:06 pm (4 years ago)

    Tried Ma’am Bolduc last night and it was the best we’ve tried so far! Thanks for your expert poutine ideas!

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres
      October 28, 2013 at 4:22 pm (4 years ago)

      Happy to hear! Such a quirky place :)

      Reply
  14. lorraine
    October 29, 2013 at 5:36 pm (4 years ago)

    we will be in montreal soon and all I have been doing is checking out the eats! can’t wait to try some poutine with foie gras at le pied de cachon

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres
      October 30, 2013 at 9:03 pm (4 years ago)

      Glad to hear! Let me know if you need more tips.

      Reply
  15. Sam
    January 16, 2014 at 5:25 pm (3 years ago)

    The Orange Julep in TMR. Truly amazing and I have never seen it recognized. Poutine lovers, this place deserves your patronage!

    Reply
  16. Mike
    September 13, 2014 at 9:22 pm (3 years ago)

    As an ex-Montrealer living overseas for the past 20 years, every time I come back, my best friend and I (who lives in Montreal) head out for a few days to find the best Poutine (and smoked meat). We always have the “originale” to judge them fairly. And adding anything else or all of these deviations is not being true to the Poutine!

    We tried Banquise…but NO! It is a tourist-trap or as you say, for those looking for food after a night of partying and drinking…no kidding they like it because when you’re drunk, you’ll eat anything! : ) Staff are not overly polite, no credit cards, but the food is average at best – cheese is good, but the fries and sauce are not.

    Just up the road on the corner of Boyer and Mont Royal is “Restaurant Mont Royal”. A proper old-school-cafeteria-style-no-frills-but-oh-so-good-hearty-food. Great poutine and smoked meat. Also in Quebec City (yes, I know this site is about Montreal!), Ashton’s is great. We tried the new franchise “Planete Poutine” in Quebec City…rubbish.

    In general, the best Poutine’s we’ve had have been in the “old-school” traditional places where they don’t try to be fancy and stick to the basics without all the fuss.

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve Vallieres
      September 30, 2014 at 9:17 pm (3 years ago)

      To each his own, I guess. I genuinely love poutine at La Banquise! But Mont-Royal Hot Dog (the restaurant you’re referring to) is also a favorite of mine.

      Reply
  17. Beatrice
    January 26, 2016 at 4:10 pm (1 year ago)

    Mariiiie! Chez Claudette is so much better than La Banquise! ;-) It’s definitely my favourite spot in the city for a really, absolutely 100% unhealthy meal. Poutine with bacon on top, because being healthy is important. I’m really excited to try the Chez Tousignant poutine, I’ve heard it’s amazing!

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve
      January 30, 2016 at 9:37 pm (1 year ago)

      Can you believe I’ve never actually gone at Chez Claudette? Will need to fix this in 2016.

      Reply
  18. Marie
    January 26, 2016 at 5:09 pm (1 year ago)

    Je ne suis pas vraiment fan de la Banquise. J’aime bien Poutineville, ma combinaison frite régulière oignons saucisse hot-dog sauce régulière fromage en grain & fromage mozzarella. Nouveau Système mon dépanneur préféré, tout près de mon travail, poutine pour apporter :). Jamais été chez Claudette, à mettre sur ma to do list. Très hâte d’essayer la poutine de chez Tousignant que de bon commentaire.
    PS je lis en anglais mais écrit en français…trop compliqué pour moi d’écrire en anglais ;)

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve
      January 30, 2016 at 9:36 pm (1 year ago)

      Je crois bien être la seule montréalaise qui aime La Banquise, haha! Mais Nouveau Système est ma préférée, j’habite tout près. Très difficile de ne pas m’y arrêter régulièrement!

      Reply
  19. Mary @ Green Global Travel
    February 1, 2016 at 6:01 pm (1 year ago)

    Great breakdown of poutine restaurants in Montreal. Poutine is key to really experiencing Canadian culture!

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve
      February 3, 2016 at 1:35 pm (1 year ago)

      Absolutely! There are so many other great restaurants in Montreal but poutine is a must.

      Reply
  20. Jeeny
    March 8, 2016 at 1:16 am (1 year ago)

    Thx XD im going to visit montreal soon!

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve
      March 11, 2016 at 11:11 am (1 year ago)

      Enjoy Montreal!

      Reply
  21. Daniil
    July 7, 2016 at 8:49 pm (11 months ago)

    I got so hungry just looking at these pictures! Miss poutine!

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve
      July 13, 2016 at 11:31 am (11 months ago)

      Poutine will be waiting for you in Montreal when you get back :-)

      Reply
  22. Roger
    July 27, 2016 at 9:38 pm (10 months ago)

    Marie –
    We just ate at La Banquise tonight after your (and a friend’s) recommendation.
    The food was the great. We all four had different poutines and everyone was happy! Beer was good too.
    We got there just at six. It was busy but no line. We got seated quickly and service was good. It got VERY BUSY soon after with a line out the door and past the end of the building. It stayed about that busy the rest of the time we were there.
    The BIG problem came when the bill srrived. We were told they don’t accept credit cards, only Canadian debit cards or cash. We had to scramble to figure out how to pay! Luckily they were willing to take American money. They gave us a rate of $23 Canadian for $20 US.
    Please make sure others know about this to help them avoid the same awkward, stressful situation.

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve
      July 28, 2016 at 11:28 am (10 months ago)

      Yes I will mention it, thanks Roger!

      Reply
  23. Ashley
    September 18, 2016 at 6:24 pm (8 months ago)

    These are great suggestions! I’m going to Montreal for the first time next week- I can’t wait for authentic poutine! Do you happen to remember where the poutine in the photo with the red and white checkered tablecloth is from? Something about the cheese and gravy looks extra delicious. Thanks!!

    Reply
    • Marie-Eve
      September 19, 2016 at 6:39 pm (8 months ago)

      Wonderful! Have a great trip!

      The photo you are referring to was taken at a festival and not a restaurant.

      Reply

2Pingbacks & Trackbacks on Where To Find The Best Poutine in Montreal

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