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No. 47: Damas

1201 VAN HORNE AVENUE, MONTREAL, QUEBEC
RESTAURANT-DAMAS.COM
514-439-5435

DAMAS OPENED IN MODEST QUARTERS ON PARK AVENUE IN 2010 AND WAS THRIVING THERE BEFORE THE WAR IN SYRIA PIQUED LOCAL INTEREST IN THAT TRAGIC COUNTRY’S EXTRAORDINARY CULINARY CULTURE.

Then, in 2015, a fire forced chef-owner Fuad Alnirabie’s team to move. The new location, just around the corner, is even better than the original. Now the brilliant, summery, flavourful food has the modern and vibrant decor it deserves. And there is even a terrace on which to pretend, during warm summer evenings, that one is indeed eating somewhere near the birthplace of fattoush or baba ganoush. Some love Damas because of the braised meat dishes. Think lamb with apricot and prunes or beef cooked for hours with saffron and eggplants.

Others love the salads and all the vegetable-centric mezze, like the hot pepper dip muhammara, or the salad of red pepper and pomegranate molasses, or the beet mutabbal, in which the colourful roots are pureed and mixed with tahini. Expect perfectly fresh produce, lots of lemon and parsley, and sometimes rose or orange blossom water along with crunchy croutons and nourishing grains. Yes, vegetarians and Yotam Ottolenghi disciples love the place. The wine list emphasizes the Mediterranean, with a good selection of small producers from Greece, Sicily, the south of France and, of course, the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon.

HOURS

Tuesday to Thursday
5:30 PM until 10:00 PM

Friday
5:30 PM until 11:00 PM

Saturday
4:00 PM until 11:00 PM

Sunday
4:00 PM until 10:00 PM

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IMAGES COURTESY OF DAMAS

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