Unfortunately, despite the Gordon Ramsay association, Laurier BBQ is still a rather average meal and none of the dishes really stand out. However, it is a welcome family friendly restaurant on Laurier for those with little ones.
Restaurant Laurier Gordon Ramsay, Laurier BBQ
381 Laurier West
Montreal, QC H2V 2K3
I perhaps was one of the few who somewhat regularly ate at Laurier BBQ prior to the big renovations. My husbands family has a soft spot for it, and we would regularly go for large family get togethers. I never thought it was very good (sorry guys) but it was a fairly low key atmosphere and expectations were not high. Plus, it was one of the few family friendly joints in the neighbourhood so I understood why we went.
Now, Laurier BBQ has been renamed Restaurant Laurier Gordon Ramsay and renovations have been completed to spruce up the space. The yellow and green facade has been painted white, the inside is much more modern feeling, and there is now a bar area & upstairs area. The renovations at first glance seem pretty impressive, but the floor is the same, and the upstairs space has zero atmosphere.
For my first meal here, I went with a group of girls and we were seated in the aforementioned upstairs area. It really reminds me of the upstairs of someones ski chalet, and it has about zero atmosphere. Things didn’t start well, as when we saw people downstairs had pickles we asked for some and were told they were not for upstairs guests (what!?) The only plus I can see to being seated upstairs is that there was room for a baby stroller, and because it feels like a rec room kids are pretty free to run around (it’s pretty spacious). There were 8 of us and I can confirm that every single one of us felt our meal was pretty poor to average. On top of that there was a series of service disasters – champagne but no glasses, and no one bothered to open the bottle for us, they forgot cutlery, our orders took forever, and the pickle incident. All my friends urged me to give a nasty review, but diplomat as I was I wanted to give it another shot. As we walked out of the restaurant past the long line of people waiting I am sure we all wanting to tell them to stop wasting their time and that Lémeac is just up the street.
Second attempt was with my husband. Seeing Gordon Ramsay on the restaurant name leads to some sort of expectations but alas, it was all a bit depressing. We were able to sit downstairs which definitely feels nicer but why the TV screens? Why the old floor? Our service was excellent this time around, so I can’t really argue with that. But the food, well, was really whatever. My husband had the rotisserie chicken. The sauce is pretty much the same – which I never liked and still don’t. The fries were nice – spiced and crisp. The rotisserie chicken was also reported as very good. I chose the hot chicken sandwich. I don’t know why, because I knew I didn’t really like the sauce which it was covered in. It was OK but I wouldn’t choose it again. It was the classic hot chicken sandwich – two pieces of sliced white bread, chicken, covered in gravy and peas.
To end it all, of course we had the Petit Mocha chaufée (heated) which was the exact same as prior to the renovations. Apparently Gordon slammed this one, but frankly it was the best thing we had that night.
I can honestly say the only reason I would ever go back is with children. As grown adults choosing to go out to eat I don’t know why you would choose to eat here with so many other amazing options so close. OK, it’s not as expensive but I’d rather pay a bit more for something memorable than a bit less for something so-so. I kept wondering what Gordon would think if he came into the restaurant himself. I don’t think he’d be very happy either.
The technical bits:
Rotisserie Chicken – Prices range from $15 – $36 for the entire chicken
Appetizers – $7 – $14 (examples of Appetizers include French Onion Soup $8, BBQ Chicken Wings $13, Tuna Salad $13/$16)
Mains – $12 – $28 (examples of mains include Smokey Ribs $18, Porchetta Sandwich $14, Steak & Frites $28)
Sides – $3 – $9 (examples of sides include coleslaw $3, Smoked Meat Mac n Cheese $6, Hand-Cut Fries $4)
Desserts – New Desserts are from $6 – $12 (examples of desserts include Bread Pudding $7 and Banana Split for 2 $12), Classics (all $6) include the famous Moka Cake $6, and Sugar Pie $6
There is also a $19.95 lunch menu and a $21.30 after 21h30 menu.
Bar Menu ranges from $4 – $18
Wines by the glass range from $7 – $12.50
Full menu on their website here
Reservations are now taken for groups smaller than 5. You must call by 5:00 on the day of.
Decor: Good for kids but less atmospheric upstairs (think ski chalet), cozy downstairs
Service: Ups and Downs. Our most recent meal had spot on service, one before with a group was horrible.
Prices: It’s fair, especially for Laurier, but I don’t think that the quality is there.
Food: Just average.
Good For: Out with the kids. I cannot think of any other reason to go there considering the other options in the area.