Québec City at its Best
Québec City's Best New Restaurants in 2019
Like its economy, Québec City’s restaurant scene is booming. And the food has never been better! All over town, diners are being treated to quality products, artfully prepared. Here, for your dining pleasure, is my list of newcomers not to miss.
1 La Tanière3
With the reopening of La Tanière in a new underground venue and with a young and talented new chef, Québec City has joined the ranks of the world’s top food destinations. Chef François-Emmanuel Nicol draws inspiration from the seasons, the region, and the complex and subtle aromas of wild edibles from the boreal forest to craft a menu that feels like an adventure. Every item has a story and is served in a special dish created for that very purpose. The restaurant even has valet service—a welcome offering in the Old Port sector. Think of booking ahead.
2 La Baraque Gourmande
Limoilou has another affordable family restaurant worthy of the neighbourhood! Owners Léa Paquet and Sébastien Son are partners in the kitchen and in life and you can feel the love in the dishes they create. Every day of the week brings a new daily menu inspired by fresh seasonal ingredients. The restaurant’s coffee-and-reading nook is a must, especially for soaking up some of the restaurant’s abundant natural lighting.
Tucked away in Québec’s Saint‑Jean‑Baptiste neighbourhood is a pro‑pot bistro where the words “I don’t like reggae, I love it” have newfound meaning. Don’t be fooled by the restaurant’s eclectic decor and unassuming appearance. The dishes are delish! The wine may be cheap and cheerful, but the menu more than makes up for it, with great fresh seafood and other seasonal fare.
4 Les Botanistes
The team at Les Botanistes is on a mission to elevate vegetables to their proper rank on the plate. And elevate they have, ever since the restaurant’s very first week. It’s a fitting theme, since the restaurant is part of the Floralies Jouvence complex in Cap‑Rouge—the largest garden centre around the city. The restaurant is also something of an ode to the incredible talent of chef Pierre Joubaud, whose root-to-tip approach to vegetables is simply showstopping. Of course, chef Joubaud has the benefit of working with some fine equipment (including Québec City’s very first plancha grill) and some very fine chefs: co‑owners Jean‑Luc Boulay and Arnaud Marchand. Between the three of them, no delicious subtlety is left unturned!
With its European tradition of excellence in all things food and drink, Sardines makes an elegant choice for a pre‑dinner drink. The menu is simple, with small portions of the finest quality: artisanal charcuterie, homemade sourdough bread, and of course, Portuguese and Spanish sardines. The restaurant’s charming interior features beautifully recycled materials, making this newcomer a natural fit in historic Saint‑Jean‑Baptiste.
6 Le Don
Chic and elegant, Le Don is the 2.0 of vegan restaurants. Everything here is classy, from the interior to the dishes themselves, which reflect chef Anne-Marie Grenier’s refreshingly playful and vibrant personality. The comforting soups, the heaping salads with their endless textures, and the al dente pasta make for a fabulous meal.
This bistro is located inside Cabaret Club Le Drague, an institution for Québec City’s LGBTQ2+ community. In a minimalist modern décor combining cement, metal, and white ash, chef Jean-Sébastien Mahé celebrates the richness and beauty of our local ingredients. With all the seasonal veggies, locally raised meats, and sustainable fish, you’ll forget you’re dining on a dance floor! The vegetarian and vegan options are on point.
8 El Ceviche
This little gem of a restaurant quietly opened about a year ago. Still, it didn’t take us long to fall in love with the sea-to-sky staycation that is El Ceviche, where the dishes all speak to the history of Peru: yucas fritas, papa causa, corn chicha morada, and owner and chef Mickos Rojas’s specialty: ceviche. A word of advice: don’t miss the Pisco sour.