The Best Sandwiches in Montreal: Where to go
The best sandwiches in Montreal – We’ve already talked to you about the best breakfast sandwiches, the ones we dream of starting our day with. We’ve already told you about the best chicken sandwiches, the ones that make an absolutely delicious lunch. We even told you about the best Bánh mì, those satisfying delicacies from Vietnam.
Now, for our fourth list on the theme of sandwiches, we’ve chosen to cast a wide net and include everything that can be recognized under this term. Any dish that consists of two slices of bread with toppings in between is included to create a list that will appeal to sandwich lovers of all kinds.
First, a little background. Legend has it that the sandwich made its debut in 1762 (although there are records of similar dishes from earlier times). It was a certain Sir John Montagu, fourth Earl of Sandwich in England, who, in a pub, not wanting to end his visibly exciting game of cards, asked for something quick and delicious. The kitchen staff prepared a dish with cold meats and cheese between two slices of bread so that he wouldn’t have to interrupt his game. The truth is probably less zany as many claim that the first sandwich was eaten in Sir John Montagu’s office to save time. Note that British explorer James Cook named two archipelagos in honour of the Sandwich account: the Sandwich Islands (now Hawaii) and the South Sandwich Islands.
Now for our list of the best sandwiches Montreal has to offer!
Do you know of a great sandwich place that didn’t make this list? Write to us here so we can add it!
Dépanneur le Pick-Up
Le Dépanneur le Pick-Up is a success story in the Mile Ex neighbourhood. Open for years, the atypical place has quickly gained a following with its casual formula and high quality products. The convenience store is both a grocery store and a lunch counter. It serves delicious sandwiches, to eat in or take away. Among them, the pulled pork with pickles, peppers and cabbage, the club with chipotle mayo and the fresh grilled haloum served with red cabbage, lemon, mint and honey. Alison Slattery
Olive et Gourmando
Olive et Gourmando has been around for over 20 years (!) and is still one of the best places to eat in Montreal. We come here to enjoy a great breakfast, have a coffee or show our tourist friends how well we eat in our home city. The offer of sandwiches is so mouthwatering that it’s hard to choose. In the morning, the famous Panini Poached egg on your face is essential. While at lunch, we take the Cuban sandwich with pancetta and roasted pork while praying that our dining companion orders the grilled cheese with caramelized onions, and both aged and smoked cheddar so we can taste it. Alison Slattery
Schwartz’s is a staple Montreal institution that has been offering some of the best smoked meat in town since 1928. Opened by Romanian immigrant Reuben Schwartz, the establishment built its reputation around its excellent smoked meat, prepared in a long process lasting up to 12 days. We love the fact that the decor hasn’t changed in 90 years; it takes us back to the Montreal of the 1920s! Be warned, however, whether it’s summer or winter, the lines can sometimes be long. photo Alison Slattery
We talk about this bakery often, but it’s for good reason. With a background in classic cooking, owner-baker Jeffrey Finkelstein has built one of the best bakeries in town. It’s no surprise that the sandwiches here are so delicious and perfect for a quick lunch on the Plateau. Between two slices of fresh bread, the team slips in brisket, chopped liver and other delicious additions. We let ourselves indulge by the one filled with gravlax: a nice dose of freshness! photo Tideandbloom
Concerned about the provenance of their meats, the owners of Lawrence Restaurant opened Lawrence Butchery, a few doors down from the restaurant. This butcher shop served delectable sandwiches for while and now the offering has move to their other restaurant, Larrys. We will never get enough!
With a name like that, it’s hard not to include them in this list. Capitaine Sandwich is a very gourmet sandwich counter on Duluth Street. With seven sandwiches on the menu and one on the slate, you’ll be satisfied with a gourmet lunch that’s just perfect and delicious. Around noon, the address is buzzing with regulars. Everyone has their favourite: whether it’s the halloumi, the Cuban, the Big Nan, the Curry Coco, or a special, you’ll be sure to find your favourite quickly! photo Alison Slattery
To accommodate the Provisions 1268 team’s new wine bar, the butcher shop of the same name recently got a makeover. Now in an upgraded space, the place offers sandwiches that showcase the butcher shop’s products using bread from the excellent Hof Kelsten Bakery. There are plenty of options, and there are no bad choices when the meat is of such high quality! Farah Khan
Sandwicherie Sue on Beaubien Street East offers delicious and hearty Vietnamese sandwiches! The menu features eight delicious Bánh mi options, including the traditional (liver pâté spread, BBQ ham and Vietnamese sausages), the Veg (purple cabbage, cucumber, carrots and daikon pickles), the Chinese Eggplant (Szechuan-style sautéed Chinese eggplant) and the Shiitake (fresh mushrooms sautéed in soy sauce, garlic and shallots). All the Bánh mi of the house are served with a homemade aioli, cucumber, coriander, carrot, pickled daikon, spicy mayonnaise and jalapeños: pure delight! photo Sandwicherie Sue
La Bête à Pain
La Bête à Pain Griffintown opened its doors in 2016 in the heart of the Griffintown neighbourhood. The establishment has become a staple in Montreal to enjoy excellent artisanal bakery creations. And whoever says good bread, says great sandwiches! We go there to taste theirs, including the crispy chicken burger, the goat cheese sandwich, the grilled cheese with local cheeses and – the ultimate source of comfort – the ham and butter. Marc-André Royal’s establishments are among the most appreciated bakeries in the city and we strongly recommend a visit if you’re in Griffintown, Ahuntsic or, most recently, Laval! photo Ines Duguen
Hélico café is a charming address in the Hochelaga neighbourhood. Formerly of Bouillon Bilk, the young trio that operates the cafe is very talented. The Hélico café offers a short menu of simple, delicious and fresh dishes, served as lunch or brunch. David Oulu is the one who creates the delicious recipes that are savoured here; refreshing salads, cold soups and other great dishes. And what about the breakfast sandwich! It’s amazing: homemade bun, homemade big-mac sauce, smoked meat, egg and pickles… It’s a must-try! photo Alison Slattery
Brasserie Le Réservoir
Brasserie Le Réservoir, a dynamic pub located on the Plateau Mont-Royal, is one of our favourite addresses. Here, you can enjoy small, delicate and delicious bites from opening to closing. It’s in their refined and modern space that you’ll be served revisited classics. We particularly recommend the fried chicken sandwich with ranch sauce, served in a hamburger bun – this is delicious comfort food! Accompany it with one of their excellent beers, and you’ re golden! photo by Alison Slattery
Le Lapin Pressé offers a real return to childhood with its delicious grilled cheese! The little snack bar located on Laurier Avenue East offers a variety of grilled cheeses as beautiful as they are good! Very good Quebec breads and cheeses are chosen for the success of a grilled cheese that is crispy on the outside and oozy on the inside. The menu, written on a small slate, invites customers to choose between grilled cheese combinations of apple, masala and mimolette, pear and blue cheese, mozzarella, tomato and bell pepper and more. Alison Slattery
Aliments Viens is one of our favourite butcher shops. Their charcuteries are available all over town and many of the best restaurants in town are supplied by them. When you enter the shop, the butchers quietly leave what they’re butchering to prepare excellent sandwiches. They use their delicious charcuterie, local cheeses and bread from Hof Kelsten (a neighbour of the address) to make their delicious offerings. Our favourite is definitely the ham and Comtomme cheese sandwich. photo Alison Slattery
Opened in the summer of 2018, Conserva is a beautiful delicatessen in the heart of Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie, on Plaza Saint-Hubert. The goal of this project is to showcase local products in a zero waste environment. Here, you’ll find fruits and vegetables, homemade condiments, meats and charcuterie and delicious Quebec cheeses among other goods. Every day, the kitchen team prepares a sandwich of the day inspired by local and seasonal products. A new delight to be enjoyed daily! photo Alison Slattery
Chez ta mère
Chez ta mère sandwich shop offers comforting creations that do more than just fill you up. A hybrid between a counter and a cafe, this little place is perfect for a gourmet lunch break in the heart of Mile End! The menu is designed in the image of Montreal: a cosmopolitan city. Every day, Hamza prepares five sandwiches inspired by the cuisine of five regions of the world (South America, Asia, North Africa, France and Quebec). And since we’re at Chez ta mère, each sandwich is named in honour of a mother. Chez ta mère
A little gem in Villeray, the Comptoir Sainte-Cécile is a veritable treasure for lovers of fine foods. On the shelves and in the fridges, you’ll find great local products – homemade charcuterie, Quebec cheeses, some wines, chocolates, preserves, jams, plantain chips and some breads from Boulangerie Guillaume. You can enjoy delicious and tasty sandwiches that change according to the team’s mood and the season’s products, but always with the best cheeses from here! Photos Alison Slattery
Wilensky’s has changed very little since it opened in 1932 and has retained its vintage charm. Opened by Moe Wilensky, the house is famous for its internationally renowned sandwich, the “Wilensky Special®”! We like its simplicity: beef salami served in a round bun, with mustard, served hot and very quickly. The establishment, which still has some of its first customers, is a staple in Montreal and is on our list of great lunch spots in Mile End for less than $10. Alison Slattery
A new Italian cafe in Griffintown, Mano Cornuto opened its doors this summer and the place is already overflowing with customers! Everyone seems to know each other and the atmosphere is welcoming. Run by a group of dynamic young people, the place prepares delicious dishes, including two generous sandwiches (including a vegetarian option) in all simplicity that make the products used shine! Alison Slattery
Open since January 22, 2018, May 22 serves up delicious homemade sandwiches for take-out with ease. Upon entering the tiny establishment, one quickly notices the business’ mentality with the warm welcome of Rosalie behind the counter. With simplicity and without pretension, two types of comfort sandwiches are served here, designed to please everyone: one with ham, the other with veggie paté. In addition to the delicious sandwiches, Rosalie’s freshly baked breads, delicious homemade cookies, salad of the day and various beverages are also available for purchase. Over time, some new items and surprises may be added to the menu, but the basic sandwiches will remain. Photos Alison Slattery
Clarke Café opened in Pointe-Saint-Charles in June 2018 and offers delicious Italian sandwiches, pastries and coffees to savour on the spot or to take-out. Frank Servedio worked for over 15 years at the famous Clarke Bakery in Mile End, which was owned by his parents. “The Clarke Café is really a sandwich shop with my personal touch; we serve great Italian coffee and there’s more space to sit and eat, drink or watch a soccer game,” says Frank. The sandwiches – Clarke Bakery’s signature product – are based on traditional Servedio family recipes and are offered in a variety of new variations. Customers can choose from breads, charcuterie, toppings and signature sauces to create the perfect combination of Italian flavours. Photos Alison Slattery
Club Social PS
Club Social PS is the beautiful cafe of the restaurant Elena. It offers great coffee, great pizza and great wine to eat in or take-out. There are Italian-style pastries in the morning, at 11 a.m. their pizza al tallio (Roman pizza) comes out of the oven – three or four different options each day – and the place offers some delicious salads to take-out as well as delicious sandwiches.
BLT de luxe, fried chicken sandwiches or homemade falafel sandwiches, this address offers scrumptious sandwiches made with local products including delicious Quebec cheeses!
Resto-bar le Pick Up
Lee Bar le Pick Up offers a delicious pulled pork and pork belly sandwich to savour on the spot or to take-out! With homemade breads and homemade sauces, what a treat!
This Catalonian counter has left its alley to move into the former convenience store next door on Lajoie Avenue. For this new address, the owners Lindsay Brennan and Juan Lopez have focused on several aspects: rotisserie, wine shop and luxury convenience store. We highly recommend the octopus bocadillo! Sure, it’s rather expensive, but it’s worth every penny. Inside, you’ll find the entire tentacle served with lemon mayo and paprika.
A true Italian institution, Café Gentile has been a great success since it opened on Park Avenue over 60 years ago. With the opening of its second location in the Westmount neighbourhood in 2016, Café Gentile now ranks among the best Italian cafes in the city. In addition to serving excellent coffees, both establishments are also known for their delicious sandwiches, including the “Fuhgeddaboudit”, a sandwich offered on the lunch menu, consisting of breaded chicken, fried eggplant, fior di latte, prosciutto, peppers and a light basil mayonnaise. A great lunchtime treat!
Ma Poule Mouillée
Ma Poule Mouillée, known for its Portuguese grilled meats and Portuguese version of poutine, definitely offers one of the best sandwiches in Montreal – Le P’tit Talbot. Charcoal roasted chicken and homemade piri-piri sauce on papo seco bread, this sandwich is definitely worth the wait in line at the Portuguese rotisserie.
Pastel Rita, the colourful Mile End cafe, bar, restaurant and creative space, has some great sandwiches on its pretty menu – including the white ham from Boucherie Viens with gribiche sauce and anchovies on ciabatta bread. A fresh and delicious sandwich that goes very well with a good glass of wine.
In the heart of Little Italy on Saint-Laurent Boulevard, Porchetta offers flavours of Italian street food with, of course, porchetta as its central element. Among the choices offered, you’ll find the classic porchetta sandwich with homemade mayo, salsa verde and hot peppers. A classic in Little Italy.
At lunchtime, the address attracts crowds. You can enjoy a nice selection of gourmet sandwiches (among the best sandwiches in town) with porchetta, cotelletta, sausage (Italian, of course), etc.
Le midi, l’adresse attire les foules. On déguste une belle sélection indémodable de sandwichs gourmands (parmi les meilleurs sandwichs de Montréal) à la porchetta, à la cotelletta, à la saucisse (italienne, bien entendu), etc.
Vin Mon Lapin
Le bar à vins Mon Lapin a ouvert ses portes au début du mois de mars 2018, et vient s’ajouter avec perfection à la Petite-Italie. Anciennement le dernier projet du groupe Joe Beef, c’est Marc-Olivier Frappier et Vanya Filipovic (anciens Joe Beef) qui en sont maintenant exclusivement les propriétaires. Ils sont connus pour être des maîtres de l’hospitalité — ils l’ont prouvé avec le Joe Beef, le Liverpool House, Mckiernan Luncheonette et le Vin Papillon. Et encore une fois, ils excellent. Mon Lapin a aussi un des meilleurs sandwichs en ville, le Gnocchi Fritti, fait de jambon, cheddar et beurre.
Rôtisserie Serrano Bar-B-Q
Servis dans des pains ronds portugais, les sandwichs de la Rôtisserie Serrano sont l’emblème de l’établissement — poitrine ou cuisse de poulet, saucisse, flanc de porc croustillant et même patates. Toutes les déclinaisons de sandwichs sont possibles, savoureuses, et ô combien réconfortantes !