I have now crossed the city from north to south and from east to west twice to have lunch at McKiernan Luncheonette. In Montreal construction traffic hell. Yes, it’s that good. This brand new luncheonette (I love that word) is the latest baby from the Joe Beef and Liverpool House gangs in partnership with Derek Dammann of Maison Publique. To say this was a recipe for guaranteed success would be an understatement. I am a huge fan of anything the Joe Beef restaurant group stands behind and this one is no exception.
The restaurant is located inside the Dompark Complexe, a substantial Côte-Saint-Paul commercial building that takes up several city blocks. McKiernan occupies a second floor space flooded with light from the large loft-style windows lining up one of its sides. The 200 or so seat dining room is furnished with biergarten-style tables and chairs and decorated with whimsical and playful art and objects with a definite nautical theme. The high ceilings, original wood flooring and columns and strung fairy lights make this one of the best looking restaurants in town. The dessert-laden counter is located at one of the short ends of the large rectangular space and beyond that is the kitchen where all the magic happens. One of the main purposes of McKiernan is to cater events and this space is perfection.
As the name suggests, this luncheonette is a day time affair serving lunch and all-day breakfast Monday to Friday. The food here is simple, flavourful and seasonal fare from comforting soups to hearty salads (the McKiernan Deluxe salad is a must) to some classics such as beef tartare and grilled cheese. Rôtisserie chicken is a staple (and a must), so are the foie parfait with plums and peperonata, the bomba mayo fries and anything of the pasta variety. There are daily specials and a breakfast sandwich that’s worth getting your hands dirty. The highlights from my first visit were the McKiernan Deluxe salad, the foie gras parfait, the rôtisserie chicken and the jelly-filled donut. Highlights from my second visit just last week include the fries, the buckwheat lumache (pasta) with duck stroganoff, the meatball (only one, deliciously oversized ball) in a spectacular tomato sauce and the insanely delicious Filet O Squash sandwich. Please note that you should also always leave room for dessert, specifically the homemade donuts.
I highly recommend you head there with friends because you’re going to want to order a few things. I personally am looking forward to crossing the city once again soon.
5524 Rue Saint-Patrick #200
Monday to Friday: 8:30AM – 2:30PM
For more on other Joe Beef restaurant reviews I have written, click here.