This is my second visit to L’Express – the first time for breakfast/brunch, this time for dinner. It is located in Montreal, Quebec, where the majority of the population are Francophone. The restaurant has no fancy décor and no snobbish waiters. Quoting the restaurant’s own website, L’Express is “American for the French, a Parisian bistro for New Yorkers”. Whether one would consider it an authentic French Restaurant is debatable; however, the quality of the food and affordability are both unquestionable.

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Wines and the French culture are inseparable. So let’s start from there. In general I find that L’Express’ wine list comprises of wines that are reasonable, and full of pleasant surprises. Take this 2010 Chateau Prieure Borde Rouge Corbières as an example. I initially thought this is a red wine, mainly from the word “rouge” but also because Corbières in  Languedoc-Roussillon is more famous for its reds (most are Grenache based, with some Carignan as well) in comparison to whites (only around 2% of its production). This Grenache Blanc plus Macabeu blend was slightly oxidative (its a style and not a fault) but full of character.

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Cahors is located in South-West part of France, with wines made predominately from Malbec. At 10 years old, The Solis Cahors was still lively; with the price tag of ~ $40, this was a pretty awesome deal.

The one complaint that I do have for L’Express is serving wines in small ISO glasses. To me, the right stemware as important as the content, if not more so.

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$13.75 Fish Soup ~ where the fish was pureed. This is a hearty soup, rich in seafood flavors. On the side, deep fried cheese croquettes were served, with house-made mayo.

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$17 Salmon Tartar ~ that also came with a big bowl of fresh hand cut french fries.

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$18.25 Octopus and Lentil Salad in Vinegrette ~ the presentation was quite interesting, and the taste was not bad.

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$9.90 Beets Salad ~ just simple, fresh and delicious!

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The 6 of us were actually starting to get full after all the appetizers. The one who ordered this sea bass filet was smart as this was the lightest main course out of everything we picked. (Don’t remember the price, this was a daily special).

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$22.90 Shrimp risotto ~ was my least favourite main dish. Perhaps I was biased because this was very heavy and filling, perhaps there was something about having risotto in a French restaurant……

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$24 Roasted Quail with Wild Rice ~ I loved the quail but the wild rice was a bit on the dry and chewy side.

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$18.25 Spaghetti with Mushrooms ~ that tasted more like a stir fry rather than a pasta dish, but nonetheless, I liked the pasta’s al dente texture. Slightly on the salty side.

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$21 Homemade raviolis ~ with minced meat stuffed inside each ginormous ravioli. They were delicious, albeit very filling! The waiter told us this dish is extremely popular among diners.

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$8.95 Ile Flottante with Caramel ~ with an impressive presentation. I saw that one couple just came especially for this dessert. The inside was filled with light and fluffy egg white which goes very well with the cream sauce and almond crunches. Just don’t eat too much of the sugar shell as that was way too sweet.

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L'Express Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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