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ÊAT:

Voulez-vous bruncher avec moi?

RESTAURANT SEAFOOD OLD MONTREAL TRENDY <$60

Disclaimer: This meal was comped.

The Pitch

In keeping with the subject of hotel restaurants from our last review, today we were solicited to try brunch at the W Montreal's ÊAT (short for Être Avec Toi).  Otto's replacement opened last December with an all-out splashy affair, which we also attended.  We saw enough that night – glitz and glamour aside – to make us want to come back, making it that much easier to exceptionally accept the comped meal.

tagged:  BRUNCH

The Mood

Mood image

ÊAT is a statement restaurant in every sense of the word, with an emphasis on art and design.  The bright, vast space poses as a gallery of sorts, showcasing paintings and murals mostly following the street/pop art movement.  Waiters are clothed in avant-garde uniforms from local fashion designer Travis Taddeo.

tagged:  EYE FOR DESIGN

The Food

Food Image

Être Avec Toi implying sharing with someone, the seafood-based menu aptly lists shareable dishes that are refined and beautifully-plated.  There is no shortage of options from mezzes and hors d'oeuvres to seafood platters and brunch staples.  Pastries, mimosas and desserts are served out of table-side guéridons (trolleys), which add some charm but can quickly hike up your bill; $5 per viennoiserie, yikes!

Two orders really stood out; the intricate salmon en quatre temps and that fabulous lobster benedict served next to the shell.  Sophistication and decadence of this order naturally come at a steep price – this is the W after all – so expect to dish out some serious dough here.  Our bill would have run up to $150 for two before tax and tip, so make sure your company is worth it!

Caesar fruits de mer thumbnail (click to enlarge)

Cocktail

Cocktail

$14

$14

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Caesar fruits de mer

"huître, bloody Caesar"

Fruit frais, plateau pour 2 thumbnail (click to enlarge)

Starter

Starter

$19

$19

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Fruit frais, plateau pour 2

Saumon thumbnail (click to enlarge)

Starter

Starter

$28

$28

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Saumon

"sashimi, saké eau du désir / mariné au citron, grillé à la cendre / tartare à la moutarde douce / fumé, crémeux à l'aneth"

Bénédictine de homard thumbnail (click to enlarge)

Main

Main

$26

$26

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Bénédictine de homard

Poisson fumé thumbnail (click to enlarge)

Main

Main

$29

$29

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Poisson fumé

"saumon, hareng, morue, bagel, fromage à la crème, condiments"

tagged:  FEAST FOR THE EYES GOOD FOR SHARING WALLET-BUSTER

The Verdict

Ultimately we found ÊAT's thematic elements – art, uniforms, guéridons – unnecessary and borderline gimmicky.  Having said that, it's easy to look past these distractions with the excellence and creativity displayed on the plate.  The seafood concept and opulence may be a game changer in the city's brunch scene, but it won't be easy to attract the big spending, jet set crowd over the long term.

tagged:  SOLID

Price per person:  $43.17

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514eats

Montreal restaurant and bar reviews brought to you by two regular guys who like to eat and drink.  We will go anywhere and we will say it like it is.

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