Through the good shots and, sometimes, the not so good, our restaurant critics tell you about their experience, introduce the team in the dining room and in the kitchen, while explaining what motivated the choice of the restaurant. This week: Théophile wine bar, in Saint-Bruno-de-Montarville.
Posted at 11:00 a.m.
Why talk about it?
Many of you ask for addresses outside the island of Montreal for your restaurant outings. Especially since there are more and more options that are worth the detour. Located in Saint-Bruno-de-Montarvile, Théophile wine bar pleased us from our first visit, last winter, for several reasons: a chef who has proven himself, an inviting dining room, an interesting wine list and controlled dishes. So we had to go back.
Who are they ?
Robin Filteau Boucher first became known by participating in the show The Chiefs ! then he rolled his bump in several establishments in the metropolis (Hà, Joséphine, Gypsy Kitchen+Bar). It is to him that restaurateur Pierre-Vincent R. Lemieux and his partner Lyne Simard (Place Deschamps at Place des Arts, café Le Parva at the Grande Bibliothèque) called on to carry out their wine bar project in Promenades St-Bruno. The idea of leaving Montreal to develop a new concept on the South Shore really appealed to this native of Chambly. Since the Théophile opened in the summer of 2021, he can count on a stable team, both in the dining room and in the kitchen.
A wine bar in a mall? Let’s just say I was asking to be convinced! Located in the Marché des Promenades section, the area’s new gourmet market, Théophile has an independent entrance and a pretty, quite intimate terrace. It’s easy to forget that we’re surrounded by shops, especially since the design of the dining room, elegant, bright and modern, is signed by BlazysGerard.
Fairly succinct, the menu varies according to the seasons and local arrivals. The chef makes it a point of honor to make everything homemade, including the focaccia – both soft and crispy with its parmesan garnish –, the ricotta, or even the fresh pasta.
This attention to detail shows in the plate. The proposed compositions, all very well worked, lean more towards simplicity, with a few more inventive nods here and there.
Classic of this table, the crudo, all in delicacy, went well on this hot August evening. Sea bream, cucumber and gherkins bathed in a rhubarb buttermilk juice (quite subtle), bringing roundness and acidity, and caviar, for the salty touch!
We devoured the casarecce with lobster. The portion was very small, but the sauce, made with bisque and lobster butter, was exquisite, as was the shellfish, meaty and cooked to perfection, and the fresh, plump pasta.
As a main course, the octopus tentacle, grilled and tender, is spiced up with a tasty caper emulsion and a parsley salad topped with small marinated biquinho peppers, all crunchy to the bite. Nothing to say about the duck breast, very juicy. Its accompaniment was particularly successful: a celeriac remoulade two ways (cubed and thinly sliced), sprinkled with chanterelles. The earthy aromas of the mushrooms paired well with the root vegetable.
A quick word on the desserts, completely seasonal, where fruit was featured: pannacotta flavored with thyme, with roasted peaches and apricot coulis, then madeleines and strawberry cream accompanied by a rather creative fruit salad (braised strawberries, marinated rhubarb and fresh raspberries). This is the perfect conclusion to a flawless meal!
In our glass
Sommelier Samuel Vachon takes care of the wine list, inviting you to discover. It offers a fine selection by the glass, and will appeal to classic palates as well as to the most funky. Maitre d’ Karelle Voyer gave us good advice and guided us towards a macerated Pinot Gris from the Willamette Valley, Oregon, with very expressive fruit, and Nas del Gegant, a dark rosé from Catalonia, a real explosion of Red fruits. As an aperitif, two refreshing cocktails: Le Viger, all green and dapper (Jardin Verde gin, cucumber, basil, celery syrup), and Joe Octave, very spicy and tangy (Cherry River wild cherry vodka, ginger beer, sumac and kiwi, white pepper).
Yes, a plate of fresh pasta with lobster at $45, that’s surprising! In these times of inflation and rising food prices, this is undoubtedly the price to pay for quality, homemade products. That said, there are more affordable options. Admissions range from $14 to $23; fresh pasta, from $28 to $45; and mains, $35 to $41. It is also possible to choose the Discovery menu at a cost of $80 per person (add $70 for the wine pairing).
Good to know
The place is easily accessible for people with reduced mobility. It is possible to eat vegetarian without problem, but vegan options are more rare.
Théophile is open from Tuesday to Saturday. Reservations recommended.
530 Boulevard des Promenades, Saint-Bruno-de-Montarville