Maison-Boulud600

As a fan of Daniel Boulud’s innovative cuisine, I jumped at the chance to try his Montreal restaurant, Maison Boulud, this weekend for a Valentine dinner date with my husband.

The restaurant is large yet cozy. A beautiful fireplace near the restaurant’s bar helps you forget the blowing snow right outside the Ritz Carlton hotel, where the restaurant is located. The service is exactly what one hopes it would be for this level of dining. Prompt and courteous, the professional staff made us feel comfortable from the start. The only minor annoyance was when the hostess placed us in a smaller secondary dining room even though the larger main area clearly had vacant tables, and I had reserved weeks in advance. I politely asked the hostess to move us to the main area and she agreed. It might be a good idea to mention table placement when you reserve at Maison Boulud.

On to the star of the night, the meal. My major fear coming into the restaurant was that I would be disappointed by the experience. My expectations were so high, I felt it was inevitable. I could not have been more wrong, and this was just further proof that I really do worry too much… As an appetizer, our waiter suggested we order the fried artichoke hearts with aioli along with our cocktails. They came promptly and were still crackling hot. The artichokes were cooked and seasoned to perfection, and contrasted beautifully with the creamy aioli. A perfect starter to open up our appetites. My next course was the baby beet and Ruban Bleu fresh goat cheese salad with candied pistachios and watercress. Generously garnished with herbs, yellow and red beets of varying sizes are placed over a long strip of goat cheese. It was delicious and a feast for the eyes, with lovely color and texture.

For the main dish, I chose the salmon confit, with cauliflower puree, romanesco, capers and lemon. The salmon is served slightly pink and is moist with flavor. Romanesco is a cone shaped and mild flavored Italian cauliflower with spiraling florets. It worked very well with the fish, and the capers and lemon added the perfect amount of saltiness and acidity to the dish.

Maison Boulud restaurant review

Salmon Confit, image by Bakebellisima

To end the meal, there were many enticing options to choose from. Would we try the baba au rhum with a grilled chestnut mousse? Or the caramel confit apple with poached quince and maple sponge? In the end we were tempted by the chocolate coulant, with a fleur de sel liquid caramel center, and caramelized condensed milk ice cream over a chocolate sable crumb. This is their most popular dessert for a reason, the caramel filling is sweet and salty, works perfectly with the chocolate and the ice cream, divine.

Maison Boulud restaurant review

Chocolate coulant with caramel fleur de sel, image via Serious Eats

This restaurant is a perfect addition to the lively Montreal culinary scene and left me wanting to come back soon to try other dishes. I may even ask to get a tour of their kitchen next time to observe the masters at work.

Note: Roastedmontreal.com has interviewed Daniel Boulud about his Montreal establishment, you can see the article here.

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  • Agnes Vanlac

    Vous m’avez mis l’eau a la bouche! What a dreamy experience!
    Thanks for sharing.

  • Myriam

    My husband and I loved the restaurant also! Next time you go you MUST have the Jerusalem artichoke soup! It’s divine!!! I’m not a big fan of fish but I must say the salmon was one of the best I’ve ever had. I’m glad you weren’t disappointed by your favorite chef!!

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1/2 cup torn basil leaves
1 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar (or balsamic vinegar)
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1/4 scraped vanilla bean pod
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1-2 tablespoons hot chili paste such as sambal oelek, or Thai chili paste. Adjust for desired spice level.
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𝐓𝐡𝐚𝐢 𝐂𝐨𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐮𝐭 𝐂𝐮𝐫𝐫𝐲 𝐑𝐞𝐜𝐢𝐩𝐞: 
2-3 tablespoons 𝐯𝐞𝐠𝐞𝐭𝐚𝐛𝐥𝐞 𝐨𝐢𝐥
2 lbs 𝐦𝐨𝐜𝐤-𝐜𝐫𝐚𝐛
1 small yellow 𝗼𝗻𝗶𝗼𝗻, minced
1 clove 𝗴𝗮𝗿𝗹𝗶𝗰, minced
𝘀𝗮𝗹𝘁 and 𝗽𝗲𝗽𝗽𝗲𝗿 to taste
2 tablespoons 𝗿𝗲𝗱 𝗰𝘂𝗿𝗿𝘆 𝗽𝗮𝘀𝘁𝗲, 𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝗲𝗯𝗼𝘂𝗴𝗵𝘁 𝗼𝗿 𝗵𝗼𝗺𝗲𝗺𝗮𝗱𝗲*
2 teaspoons 𝗰𝘂𝗿𝗿𝘆 𝗽𝗼𝘄𝗱𝗲𝗿
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1 can 𝗰𝗼𝗰𝗼𝗻𝘂𝘁 𝗺𝗶𝗹𝗸
1 𝗹𝗶𝗺𝗲, cut into wedges
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  • Shabbat shalom to all!!