I'm baaaaaaaaaaaaack! Ok, I'm back for NOW. Don't get too too excited. I like to make an appearance when a resto is really worth it, you know? It's like a service I'm offering: I will write a review if you deserve a review. And this place NEEDS to be on my blog. Like, 150%. If you've been here, you know. You just do.
I have been to this restaurant four times since July. It is definitely in my top three restos in Montreal alongside Sep Lai in Pointe St-Charles and Barcola Bistro Audio in Mile-End. First time I went, I fell in love. In. Love. Of course, as (my) luck would have it, as soon as I decide to write a review, the waiter tells us that they are short staffed in the dining room AND in the kitchen. Fun.
Best seats in the house are at the kitchen bar, where you get to see all the action. This is where its at, people. You see everythin'. In a good kitchen, it's like a dance: everyone has a section and something specific to do. It's awesome to watch, and you can FEEL the tension, you can FEEL the stress. As an old kitchen girl myself, I always worked better when I was 'dans l'rush'.
Let's get to the food, shall we? I mean, that's why I came out of retirement, am I right? The menu is divided in 2 sections: cold plates and hot plates, and you are to share these with a lover. Ha! I WISH. This is the section of the blog post where I mention that I am looking for a girlfriend. If you know anyone, please reach out. Lover or not, you share dishes, and that's just how food should always be had. We told the server to bring us whatever the chef wanted us to try, but it MUST *always* include the beef tataki. This dish, for me, is the pillar of Pigor. Goat cheddar, shitake, lemon aioli, pearl onions, and of course, slightly seared beef, thinly cut, but not too much, just right. Like Goldilocks and the three bears. JUST like that. Anyway, getting back to this MASTERPIECE of a dish: putting everything together, it just tastes like heaven in your mouth. There are so many levels of flavors, but not too much at the same time. I'm always temped to order 8 rounds of this. But i don't.
Second dish was the mushroom tartar with wild mushrooms, nuts, cheese, tarragon. It sounds so simple, but, again, this dish is a win every time. The crunch of the nuts accompanied with the other ingredients brings on a really great texture. The yolk gives an extra smooth feeling and just fits so well with all the flavors.
Now, for them hot dishes. First one: brussel sprouts with lardons, parmesan, croutons and a hint of cesar sauce. The brussel sprouts are perfectly charred and the fact that there is just a little bit of sauce doesn't make it that heavy. Also, let's face it, I could have lardons in all my meals (all day, erry day), so they were very welcomed here!
Second hot dish was the mushroom risotto. You know, it's a fine line between perfectly cooked risotto and mushy risotto and, you guessed it, this one was a 10. OK, an 11. I love everything that features mushrooms, and this was no exception. One thing that restaurants overuse is truffle and/or truffle oil. Why? Why must they do that? Ugh. Anyhoooot, Pigor does NOT do that. Why? Because they know their shit. Because they STUDIED to be chefs. because they are awesome. This dish has many layers of flavors, one after the other. It's like 'oh yum, I love these mushrooms, oh this parmesan is lovely and adds that salty aspect to it, and then oh yum truffle adds a je-ne-sais-quoi to it'.
I was hellbent on not having dessert, but conceded pretty quickly when the waiter told us they had that deconstructed carrot cake. If you want to see me drool, get me that cake. So moist (yep, still hate that word, but I gots to use it sometimes), and creamy, and carroty, with a hint of cardamom. I don't think you fully understand how good this is. You'll just have to go.
Service was, well, slow. We were made aware of this when we arrived, at least. The waiter was really nice and witty, and I enjoyed his presence (when he was there). It took quite a while for us to get our first dish, but it was way quicker to get our other dishes.
Alright ladies and gents, drum roll please, the scores are up!
- Food: 9.5 (because I have a hard time giving a perfect 10)
- Service: 8 (only because we were aware that it was going to be long, AND we loved our waiter)
It was nice coming out of retirement to share this extraordinary restaurant with you. I know, it's a big word. And I don't regret using it. If you are ever in Verdun, go! If you are in the province of Quebec, make the detour ;)