The franchise on Decarie for Bâton Rouge Grillhouse & Bar recently held a VIP reopening after an extensive $1.3 million renovation and redesign. The seating capacity here is 242 in the dining room, with an additional 65 on the seasonal terrace. Everything from the booths, tables, lighting, TVs, bar, washrooms and wine cellar are spanking new. The restaurant’s new design and layout boasts a modern, laid-back look that strikes the right balance between comfortable seating and the lively bar atmosphere. The curated sound system and music create an ambiance that exudes casual elegance, while the lighting offers guests a varying atmosphere throughout the day.

Marketing Director Maria Frank notes that locations at Complexe Desjardins and in Lachenaie will get new looks this summer, followed by Kanata in the Ottawa area and a brand new franchise at Carrefour Angrignon in LaSalle in the fall. I was recently invited to Decarie for a tasting where I enjoyed some piping hot, creamy lobster bisque, the 15 ounce rib steak accompanied by fries and a key lime pie, dipped in chocolate for dessert. My friend opted for their trademark slide-off-the-bones ribs and chose the cheesecake to top things off. Frank said that food innovation has been a major pillar for the chain in 2023. A new Spring/Summer menu features items such as black cod, tempura shrimp, grilled octopus and lobster. Info:  https://www.batonrouge.ca/en

Top of the line smoked meat at Dizz:  Over at Dizz’s Bagel and Deli, owner Steve Dizgun has added something quite special to the Côte St. Luc Road  establishment’s offerings. Billy Billy Berenholc is the owner of the nearly seven decade old Lesters Deli (www.lestersdeli.com/)  on Bernard Street in Outremont, as well as Mr. Smoked Meat (www.mrsmokedmeat.com), a purveyor of upscale smoked meat in the wholesale sector. Via his Mr. Smoked Meat brand, Dizz’s (www.dizzsbagel.com) can now make  you a  hot smoked smoked meat sandwich between two slices of rye bread, with mustard, and a soft drink for $13.99. For an extra dollar you can also get a pickle. I was invited over for a tasting and yes folks this was quite a treat!

La Pizza Week: As a foodie I just love what Na’eem Adam and Thierry Rassam of People Mover Technologies have done the last few years with festivals focusing on burgers, poutine and most recently pizza. Their third edition of La Pizza Week, marked across Canada in early May was a lot of fun. Montreal had 26 restaurants enter the festival and  I visited two of them : Pizzéria No. 900 (https://no900.com) and Dunn’s  Famous on Decarie (www.dunnsdecarie.ca). Pizzéria No. 900) now has 28 locations. I dropped by the franchise on Monkland Avenue in NDG, operated by Patrice Tremblay and his wife (they also own the Rockland locale). Their entry was called the Charlevoix, containing organic meats, tomato sauce, pancetta, ventricina, onions, fior di latte, nduja, pecorino romano, black pepper. I really liked it. My next visit was to Tony Sama at Dunn’s Famous on Decarie where I sampled their classic all dressed pizza made with tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, all beef pepperoni, fresh cut green peppers and mushrooms topped with their signature chopped smoked meat on a hand stretched dough. It was delicious!

 

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