MONTREAL — As part of the $200-million Esplanade Place Ville Marie (PVM) revitalization project undertaken by Ivanhoé Cambridge, PVM is preparing for the January 2020 opening of Le Cathcart Restaurants et Biergarten.
The impressive 35,000-sq.-ft. food hall will showcase new concepts from established chefs — including renowned chef Antonio Park — as well as newcomers on the city’s culinary scene. A5 Hospitality has also tapped former Toqué! and Bistro Mansfield executive chef Lionel Piraux to be Le Cathcart’s culinary director.
The new downtown epicurean space will provide Montrealers with a unique and varied culinary offering, including three full-service restaurants, nine food counters, two cafés and a biergarten located under PVM’s 7,000-sq.-ft. glass pavilion. Designed as a public space bathed in light and vegetation, this indoor garden — designed to become a lively meeting place adapted to the ebb and flow of daily life — will offer a festive social experience where people can enjoy good food and drink.
“When we were invited to rethink and redesign Place Ville Marie’s food hall, the grand architectural gestures had already been set in motion, with the idea of giving back a living space to the workers and residents of the downtown core,” says Alexandre Besnard, founding member of A5 Hospitality group and creator of Le Cathcart Restaurants et Biergarten. “With this top of mind, the goal was to create a warm and friendly gathering space with an array of elevated restaurant choices and everyday affordability, where people would be inspired to return and come together again and again. This led to selecting collaborators who knew how to offer products and concepts that know how to please everyone.”
Biergarten will offer a vast selection of microbrewery beers, carefully curated by beer expert Stéphane Pilon (founder of Vilains Brasseurs, Broken 7), a wine selection prepared by sommelier Marc-André Nadeau (Jatoba) and a choice of sophisticated cocktails created by Daphnée Vary Deshaies (ex-Foxy). The space is designed to be reconfigured for a variety of occasions, including parties, weddings and conferences.
Full-service restaurants will include Aiko, which will serve meals inspired by Osaka street food, including a selection of sushi and charcoal-grilled brochettes. The concept is a collaboration between chefs Antonio Park and Olivier Vigneault (Jatoba, Westwood Bar & Grill). Chef Federico Bianchi will also offer Neopolitan-inspired pizzas at Pizza Del Fornaio and chef Nicholas Giambattisto will offer simple, elegant, accessible fare at the new brasserie Mirabel.
Food counters will include new concepts, such as chef Raegan Steinberg’s Dirt Greens; chefs Alexandre Cohen and Luka Lecavalier’s Patzzi; and chef Michael Lewis’s Korean fried-chicken counter Chikin. Established brands will also be featured, including Uniburger, Omnivore, Café Veloce, Hà and Mon Nan.