LE GROS JAMBON
286 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest Montreal, (514) 508-3872
I was walking to the Couche Tard on Notre Dame 3 days ago, and almost missed this inconspicuous little diner in its discreet and somewhat dull location. The appealing array of deserts visible through the glass window is initially what caught my attention. When I realized it was the popular and admired Le Gros Jambon, I took note and promised myself I would schedule in a little visit by the end of the week.
I heard about how crowded it gets around lunchtime, and was a little worried since I justifiably find it difficult to enjoy a meal when I’m uncomfortably cramped into a corner without sufficient arm room. I walked in at around 3pm on Thursday afternoon, and thankfully the diner was almost empty. Considering it’s only 6 months old, they succeeded in delivering a truly authentic old-school diner vibe. Everything from the music, the décor and the southern comfort food (with a slight upscale twist) emphasized the theme.
The manager Sean promptly greeted and seated us, and was quick to suggest popular items on the menu. My companion ordered The Coca-Cola Burger, made with an incredibly flavored homemade patty, coca-cola mayonnaise and deep fried pickles, served on a bed of French fries with a small side of coleslaw. It’s rare that I thoroughly enjoy a burger, or even have one that impressed me enough to recommend to friends, but this was honestly one of the most delicious, mouthwatering and juicy burgers I’ve ever eaten. A must-try for all of burger lovers out there!!
I ordered the Lobster Grilled Cheese, which was also served on a bed of French fries with a small side of coleslaw. It was pretty good - simply just a grilled cheese with the addition of fresh chunks of lobster. It’s a fun idea but it was slightly lacking in flavour. I must admit that while eating the sandwich, I secretly wished I had ordered the burger instead.
We shared the Mac n Cheese with Duck Confit. My companion and I had conflicting verdicts on the plate. I thoroughly enjoyed it and thought the addition of the duck was so creative and complimented the dish extremely well, yet my companion thought it too was lackluster in regards to flavor. He was never a fan of Mac n Cheese so I agreed to disagree.
Overall, I had a wonderful experience. The staff was fun, welcoming and completely unpretentious. The atmosphere was upbeat and authentic - Definitely a memorable treat in itself! The food was great and very affordable. I will definitely be a regular customer and I’m excited to try what else this spot has to offer!
My Rating: 8/10