Oct 30, 2012

Locals love Lafayette’s delicious Greek delicacies

Terrasse Lafayette provides an authentic taste of Greece right here in Montreal’s own Plateau

Alycia Noë

Locals love Lafayette’s delicious Greek delicacies
The cozy exterior of Montreal’s ultimate Greek cuisine destination. (terrasselafayette.com)

Are you in the mood for Greek food? If you’re craving souvlaki or a gyro, a walk through downtown Montreal will yield a multitude of Greek options.

While Greek food is plentiful and abundant in this metropolis, quality is sporadic and difficult to pinpoint. Too often, Greek food can be overly salty and oily. What is it that distinguishes mediocrity from excellence? Simple: authenticity.

Hidden deep within the Plateau is a small family-run restaurant called Terrasse Lafayette, or known to regulars as ‘Lafayette’s’. This restaurant serves a mixture of different cuisines, attracting a wide variety of customers: one can order pizza, pasta, burgers, various vegetarian dishes, and most importantly, genuine Greek cuisine. Others seem to enjoy the whole menu, but I would recommend avoiding the mediocre Italian and American dishes, and opt for the Greek selections.

It may seem like an obvious notion, but Greeks just make the best Greek food. The owners of this restaurant are from Greece, and know how to season and cook satisfying dishes. This is the type of comfort food you crave on a weekly basis. Without fail, I order in once a week, usually the same thing: a chicken pita with French fries.

The chicken pita contains moist and delicately seasoned chicken that is grilled to perfection on a skewer. It is then topped with crisp chunks of tomato, plenty of fresh onion slices, and a smooth, not too garlic-y tzatziki sauce, no mint.  In fact, I cannot remember having a good authentic tzatziki that contains mint.  The sandwich wrap is slightly thicker and a little breadier than the average pita, and provides the perfect contrast of textures: the soft pita, the tomatoes and onions adding some crunch, and moistness from the chicken and smooth tzatziki.  Bonus tip: chilling an extra souvlaki overnight, and eating it for lunch the next day offers yet another tasty experience.

With regards to the French fries, it is challenging, in my opinion, to make French fries crave-worthy, but Lafayette’s manages to do just that. If I do not eat these fries weekly, I experience withdrawal. In addition, Lafayette’s is always willing to accommodate special requests. I order my French fries extra crispy and without salt, exactly how I enjoy them. The fries are always the ideal texture, without being oily.

Terrasse Lafayette encourages both delivery and dine-in eating. The restaurant is relatively small in size, but is newly renovated and extremely clean. The washrooms are some of the nicest I have found in the city. It boasts a warm atmosphere and friendly service. Occasionally, the service can be slow due to the small number of staff, and a frequently-packed restaurant.  If you visit during the off-hours between lunch and dinner, it makes for a much calmer experience.

In my opinion, delivery is the way to go; it’s free and usually takes 45 minutes. However, at peak hours it can take as long as an hour and a half. Be ready to wait, but take my word—the food is worth it. Even if the food does take a while, it always arrives steaming hot.  The price is reasonable, and one chicken pita with fries costs less than $10 (minimum $10 for delivery).

I absolutely love Greek food and am admittedly a tough critic, but Lafayette’s undeniably has the best Greek food I’ve encountered in Montreal.

250 West Villeneuve, Montreal, Quebec 

Open daily from 11 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.


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