Although Montreal may not offer as many options for Dim Sum as Toronto, I've still managed to sample a couple of restaurants in the city's limited China Town that have all managed to satisfy my cravings. My friends and I tend to opt for local favourite Kam Fung, which presents their Dim Sum in a cart-service style where several different dishes are pushed around by waitresses on carts and diners select whatever appeals to them physically. Though this method benefits from choosing your food based on how it looks, the waitresses are often unable to communicate what the dishes are in english, and are always in a rush, which can make the whole experience slightly stressful. Feeling a little adventurous, my foodie friends suggested we try out Le Cristal Chinois, and we were not disappointed!
Entering Cristal Chinois reminds you to not judge a book by its cover - Though the restaurant is located on the sixth floor of a multi-purpose building and may be missed by passerbys, the interior is extremely modern! The large dining space features high ceilings, large circular light fixtures, a visible wine collection, and a retractable wall that divides the space. My dining companions and I were fortunate enough to get seats on a slightly elevated platform by a wall of windows that displayed a beautiful view of Old Montreal. One wall of the restaurant is completely lit-up by purple lights, and has a large screen hanging from the ceiling that displays a picture slide-show of the various Dim Sum dishes on the menu.
|Beautiful view of Old MTL|
|Deep Fried Sesame Balls with salted duck yolk (my favourite!)|
|From left to right: Shrimp Dumpling, Ox Trip, Pork Siu Mai|
|Table shot: Different Dumplings, Pork Rice Rolls, Sticky Rice with Lotus Leaves, etc.|
It should be noted that our dishes were all served very quickly in random succession (Dim Sum dishes are usually prepared in advance to allow for this quick service). Standouts were most definitely the dumplings, deep fried sesame balls, and sticky rice, but all dishes were up-to-par, so the enjoyment all comes down to personal preference. After viewing the slideshow sequence of photos, I'm eagerly anticipating my next trip since. I can't wait to try their steamed pork buns (one of my Dim Sum staples), and I'll probably have to give that singapore-style malai roll a try just-cuz.
Not only does Le Cristal Chinois serve top-quality Dim Sum dishes, but the service was above the area standard, and the restaurant's ambience and decor really couldn't be beat. The price came to about $12-13 CAD each with tax, and every last bit of food was eaten. I would definitely recommend Le Cristal Chinois to those in the Montreal area, since the Dim Sum trend really needs to be picked up around here. Make sure you go with plenty of time to spend enjoying the view and sampling the menu with as many guests as possible. (Note: the restaurant also offers many combination meals and a regular a la carte menu)
Le Cristal Chinois
998 Blvd. St-Laurent,6th floor,Montreal,QC H2Z 9Y9