Some restaurants receive a lot of attention and accolades, sometimes they’re worth the hype and other times you leave feeling that you don’t get it Restaurant Europea, located on de le Montagne, is a restaurant that has garnered plenty of praise and after our lunch, we understand why.
While Europea may not be in everyone’s price range, they serve a set 4 course lunch menu at 45$, you’ll leave feeling full and impressed. Before our first course arrived, we were given the option of three different breads: olive, herbs or regular, served with three different butters – elderberry, seaweed or whipped, all unique and delicious.
Another little extra before our first course was the beef jerky which was hanging on a makeshift clothesline. Not only was it fun and creative, the beef jerky had a deep and rich flavor. The pieces were small but oh so satisfying. Along with this we were also given truffled popcorn, and goat cheese and pesto lollipops. We loved the creativity of it all! When you think of Europea you think of a stuffy award winning restaurant, but they showed us that they can have some fun too!
The first course was Europea’s infamous lobster cappuccino. This dish really set the tone for the remainder of the meal as something truly memorable. Served in a little cup, the mousse had a deep lobster flavor, and it was also buttery but somehow light. And at the end, there was a very subtle hint of spiciness. The lobster cappuccino was everything that we expected it to be, and more!
We chose the duck and beef tartare for our second course and we were not disappointed. The duck breast was smoked and served cold, the slices lay on the beef tartare. The duck’s fat simply melted in our mouths! The beef tartare as well seasoned with a strong mustard flavour which complimented the frisée salad. There was puffed up rice, similar to Rice Krispies, to add some texture along with taro chips, something different from the customary baguette crisps.
As our main dishes, we had the Cornish hen and the beef sirloin. The Cornish hen was tender, the skin crispy and perfectly savoury. An interesting element of the dish was the asparagus wrapped in a parmesan and a thyme crumble, which was salty and bright. The peas also added some sweetness.
The other main dish was the Angus beef sirloin, cooked to a perfect medium rare. The fries were thickly cut and acted as the bed for the sirloin which was a flawless cut of meat. The potatoes had a crispy exterior and remained tender on the inside. The quail egg, which was covered in bread crumbs and deep fried like a Scotch egg, added the right amount of richness when mixed with the natural juices of the meat and vegetables.
Before our last course, we were treated to some extra dessert. Citrus and white chocolate madeleines, served warm and in a Chinese takeaway container had a prominent fennel taste. The meringues were light and crispy and the cotton candy, arranged to look like the leaves on a tree, reminded us of childhood.
The lemon pie was perfection. Presented with a disc of sugar on top which we had to crack, the shards of sugar added texture to the bright berry sorbet and subtle lemon flavour. The Chantilly cream was ever so light and creamy and dotted with silver leaf for an extra touch of elegance. It was the perfect light dessert to end our lunch.
Europea is deemed one of the best restaurants in Montreal, and for good reason. The lunch we had was utterly exceptional, from the service to every dish. The set lunch menu is well worth the price and the experience. Our proverbial hats off to Chef Jerome Ferrer!
Our Rating: Always on Thursday
Tagged: 1227 de la Montagne, Angus beef sirloin, award winning restaurant, Beef jerky, Beef Tartare, Chef Jerome Ferrer, Cornish hen, Downtown Montreal, Europea Montreal, French Montreal restaurant, H3G 1Z2, lobster cappuccino, Lunch menu Montreal, Montreal fine dining, Montreal Restaurant, smoked duck