Beauty’s Luncheonette Montreal
By Jennifer HoJan 07 2012 · 0 comments · Dining Out
Beauty’s is a historical and iconic symbol of Montreal. One of the first places in the city to serve breakfast (according to the owner, Hymie Sckolnick in Anthony Bourdain’s Montreal episode of the Layover), the luncheonette is clearly imbued with history. Just take a look around the place – old-school diner style banquettes hearkening back to the 40s, the classic and timeless items offered (bagel lox, the best milkshakes ever etc.) and the multitude of signed posters of celebrities that have visited the restaurant are proudly mounted on the walls further affirming Beauty’s as an old favorite.
It’s clear that Beauty’s is a family owned restaurant that has been passed on throughout subsequent generations as soon as you walk in the door – not only can you see the physical resemblance between the elder gentleman who greets you at the door and the younger, slightly larger man at the cash but the place just feels familial, welcoming and warm.
We were seated immediately. The service was timely and efficient. Coffee was ordered as well as a chocolate milkshake. I’ve got to tell you the milkshakes here are legendary. They are so, so, so good. I’ve gotten the cookies and cream on occasion but they’re all equally good. You must get one if you go here! Be aware that this is a popular spot, especially on weekends. It’s not uncommon to see a lineup outside the place. If you don’t want to wait in line, I suggest going on a weekday; you’ll have better luck and less pressure to eat and go.
We ordered a plain waffle that came with a ball of butter and some maple syrup, the Beauty’s Special which was scrambled eggs, sausage and some potatoes and the Beauty’s Classic which was a traditional smoked salmon bagel with loads of cream cheese, tomato and onion. While the first two were more standard than anything else, the bagel lox was one of the best I’ve had in a while – pretty delicious if you ask me. The smoked salmon was thicker and juicier than what you’d normally get, the amount of cream cheese was plentiful but not overdone in the slightest and the balance with the tomatoes and onion were just perfect. I was particularly hungry so the bagel lox didn’t do me all the way so I ordered a portion of the rice pudding. It had raisins mixed in to it which was a nice touch. You can sprinkle some cinnamon on top for some extra flavor. While the prices here are a bit more than you would expect for the amount you’re getting on the plate, you must think of it as more of an experience and a chance to experience a real part of Montreal’s history through food and the very act of simply being there. While it is true you can get some if not most of these dishes for cheaper elsewhere, you can’t beat the milkshakes, the bagel lox or the friendliness of the staff.
P.S. How great is that signed photograph of Rob Lowe! Parks and Rec, anyone?
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