My family and I visited Montreal and Quebec City in December of 2017 for a little winter vacation. Both cities are absolutely gorgeous, even when they’re covered in snow, and there was no shortage of things to do and places to see. I wrote a travel guide for Montreal and Quebec City on Forest Tourist that you can read here, but one very important thing was missing from that post: the FOOD!
As a vegan living with non-vegans, I love reading plant-based food guides whenever I visit a new city because sometimes it can be hard to find a place to eat that accommodates everyone. My family and I went to so many amazing restaurants and even found vegan food in unexpected places, so I decided it would be worth it to dedicate an entire post to vegan eats in Montreal and Quebec City.
Here we go!
The first place we ate at in Montreal was Copper Branch. This modern restaurant serves 100% plant-based “power food” and is the perfect spot to grab a quick lunch. Copper Branch has sandwiches, burgers, power bowls, and even vegan poutine! It wasn’t the prettiest food I ever had, but it sure was tasty.
Next up is Aux Vivres, Montreal’s first vegan restaurant. If you’re looking for cozy diner vibes with lots of options for food then this is the place to go. Aux Vivres has everything from burgers and sandwiches to soul food and soups, and even offers brunch on weekends. My family and I definitely ordered way too much food when we ate at Aux Vivres, so don’t underestimate the serving sizes.
If you love cats and coffee then be sure to stop by Cafe Chat L’Heureux. This cafe serves casual food and drinks and has some vegan options, but nobody goes for the food if we’re being completely honest. It’s the cats that make it worthwhile. Chat L’Heureux is a cat cafe that lets adoptable kitties wander around the restaurant and play with customers. Some of the cats even know a few tricks, so you might see a fluffy cat wearing a tie ride around on a skateboard. Don’t believe me? Then you’ll just have to see if for yourself.
Walking around Montreal all day is bound to make anyone snacky, and Délices Érable et Cie is the perfect spot for a quick bite. This teeny tiny shop is packed full of maple syrup products (talk about Canadian, am I right?). Feel free to sample maple syrup spice rubs, buy some maple leaf lollipops, or go straight to the ice cream counter like I did. Délices is the only place I’ve ever been to that has dark chocolate vegan sorbet, and it was to die for. This is also the perfect place to pick up some Canadian gifts and goodies to bring back home.
The last place we chowed down in Montreal was Tommy, and we certainly saved the best for last. This chic restaurant is picture perfect, with plants hanging all over the place, marbled tables, wooden accents, and elegant decor all over. Check out their instagram to see for yourself. As far as food goes, it isn’t the most vegan-friendly place around. There are plenty of vegetarian options that can be modified, like their avocado toast with egg that I ordered sans egg, but I recommend playing it safe by calling ahead of time to see what their specials are. I ordered a matcha latte with almond milk and the avocado toast, and it filled me up.
When I look back at our trip it seems like all of the best vegan food was in Quebec City. Well, excluding what we ate at Apsara. I was excited to eat at Apsara because the restaurant describes itself as “a taste of Asia in Quebec City” and I LOVE Asian food. Unfortunately, they did not meet my expectations. Apsara offers Thai, Vietnamese, and Chinese cuisines with lots of vegetarian options that can be modified to become vegan, but something about the food was just off. I’ve eaten a lot of Asian food, and what I ordered at Apsara tasted like it was made by someone who had never even had Chinese takeout before. If you’re the kind of person who enjoys extremely mild Asian food then maybe give Apsara a try, but consider yourself warned.
On the bright side, the food in Quebec City only improved after Apsara. Chocolato definitely raised the bar pretty high. Chocolato is a chain of chocolate shops in Quebec City that specialize in fondue. Get yourself some vegan dark chocolate fondue with fresh fruit to dip in it, and you won’t be disappointed. (And yes I ate all of that by myself, much to my family’s dismay.)
If you visit Quebec City you ABSOLUTELY have to eat at Le Soixante 5. This is hands down the best restaurant I’ve ever been to, and even my omnivorous family was swooning over their vegan orders. Le Soixante 5 is technically in Lévis, the small city located across the river from Quebec City, but is only one short ferry ride away and is well worth the visit. Honestly, I would go there just to eat at this restaurant again. Le Soixante 5 is a small vegan cafe that has a daily menu written on a chalk board hung up on the wall. The restaurant is 100% plant-based but is tasty enough to convert die hard meat eaters. My family and I went during the weekend and were lucky enough to eat from their brunch menu. I had a vegan “egg” scramble with tofu, veggie sausage, and cooked vegetables with a “cheese” sauce drizzled on top. My family had a vegan BLT, something called “la cassolette,” and brunch tacos. I also indulged in a vegan eggnog milkshake while my parents drank maple syrup whisky, and we were all completely blown away. Eat at this restaurant guys, you won’t regret it.
Saint Amour is next on the list, and holy cow is that place fancy. Like wayyy fancy. Out-of-my-budget-unless-I’m-with-my-parents fancy. We went there on New Years Eve mainly because everywhere else was completely booked, and the food was absolutely incredible. Saint Amour is the kind of place that when you tell them you’re vegan the chef whips up something special just for you and it blows your mind. If you do end up eating there, be sure to call ahead to make sure they are able to make something plant-based, and be prepared to spend all of your money.
The last place that I recommend eating at in Quebec City is La Pizzetta, an Italian restaurant with at least two locations in the city. They have vegan and gluten-free pizza crusts and vegetarian pizzas that can be ordered without cheese, as well as vegetarian pasta options that can also be made vegan.
And that is my comprehensive vegan food guide to Montreal and Quebec City. There are plenty more vegan restaurants in both cities, but unfortunately when we went most of them were closed for the holidays. If you visit either city and eat somewhere I didn’t mention let me know in the comments what you thought!
Travel safe, and eat well!
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