Restaurant review_ open-air opulence at beatrice _ montreal gazette

Surfing the Internet recently, I came upon a list of Montreal’s top restaurant terrasses, and then another, and then another. Best homemade spaghetti meat sauce Of course it’s peak terrasse season and many of the usual suspects were listed along with many worthy newcomers. Homemade pasta sauce recipe from scratch But list after list I kept looking for Bice, which to me has one of the most gorgeous — and largest — terrasses in Montreal.

4 cheese sauce recipe for pasta But no — no Bice, which would actually be listed as Beatrice as of 2013. Homemade pasta sauce from fresh tomatoes Once part of the Milano-based Bice empire, Bice Montreal changed names when the licensing fees skyrocketed when the group was bought out by new owners in Dubai. How to make homemade pasta sauce So, for a few years now, the Montreal Bice has been rechristened Beatrice, and I have passed by many times wondering whether this elegant Italian restaurant, last reviewed here in 2009, is as recommendable as ever.

Opened in 1998 by the Montreal Gourmet group (also behind the former Mediterraneo, Prima Donna, Cavalli and more), Bice started almost from the get-go as the go-to restaurant for the city’s movers and shakers, many of whom lived in the swank apartments and townhouses in the surrounding Golden Square Mile. Tomato pasta sauce calories Every time I dined at Bice, some bigwig was holding court at one of the large round tables on the terrasse. Homemade italian pasta sauce It was all very grown-up, dressed up, and predominantly anglo. Homemade spaghetti sauce from scratch for canning The amount of cross-table glad-handing never ceased to amaze. Easy homemade pasta sauce Bice also drew in many a visiting celebrity. Best homemade spaghetti meat sauce recipe I’ll never forget a waiter telling me about the night Robert De Niro showed up at Bice with Marlon Brando, who ate an entire duck — with his hands! Good times.

Well, never underestimate the draw of three winning elements in the restaurant business: an unbeatable location, a fabulous terrasse and delicious Italian food. Tomato pasta sauce for meatballs Beatrice has all three. Homemade spaghetti sauce from canned tomatoes And good news: though my last review seven years ago focused on how glaringly expensive it all was, prices are now lower. Sauce for pasta not tomato And the $25 lunch menu is a steal.

I returned for dinner on a steamy Tuesday night, and by 8 o’clock the terrasse was almost full. Making a tomato sauce for pasta Next to me, a real-estate diva; across the room, a seasoned restaurateur; on my left, a table of executives from a kitchenware company. Sauce for pasta crossword clue Beatrice feels very business-y, and no doubt many are dining on the ol’ expense account. Homemade pasta bake sauce recipe There’s a serious bar in the back of the room, and the Aperol cocktails are flowing. Homemade tomato spaghetti sauce recipe The terrasse is filled with white-tablecloth-covered tables; the ceiling is high and retractable. Easy homemade spaghetti sauce The view onto Sherbrooke St. is through Plexiglas. Sauce for pasta without tomatoes It was a sunny night and the ambience was electric. Simple homemade pasta sauce It’s all a lot of fun, in a very grown-up sort of way.

Topped with shards of Parmigiano-Reggiano, a plate of mushrooms and artichokes deserves its status as a house favourite at Beatrice. Homemade red pasta sauce recipe Dario Ayala /

The menu hasn’t changed much over the years. Fresh tomato pasta sauce recipe nz The cuisine would be best described as Italian/Mediterranean comfort food, with tartares, carpaccios, pastas, salads, grilled meat and fish topped with salsas, greens, sprouts and herbs. Homemade pasta sauce fresh tomatoes The base is Italian, but they aren’t going down the authenticity road or, on the flip side, the chef-signature-dish route. Homemade spaghetti sauce from scratch There are oils instead of sauces, pulses instead of potatoes. Fresh tomato pasta sauce recipe jamie oliver It’s the kind of food that works so well this time of year.

The wine list is predominantly Californian/Italian, with bottles familiar to traditional wine drinkers at a wide range of prices, and markups kept in check. Recipe for tomato sauce for pasta using fresh tomatoes This isn’t your neighbourhood pizza place, though — it’s a restaurant with seriously soigné food, so it would be nice to see some more obscure/natural/organic/less commercial bottles. Fresh pasta sauce from scratch Then again, if they did up the wine stakes, they would need someone to sell it. Sauce for pasta and vegetables My waiter, though friendly and efficient, didn’t know enough about the wine list to recommend a bottle without running off for advice from the sidelines. Homemade spaghetti sauce from scratch recipe Management can certainly keep things the way they are, but an edgier wine program with a sommelier on staff would be a boon to this establishment. Making homemade pasta sauce I mean, c’mon guys — Liano?

The first plate featured grilled artichokes and king mushrooms topped with tufts of niçoise lettuce and shards of Parmigiano-Reggiano. Homemade italian sauce for pasta I’m told it’s a house favourite and, considering how simple and delicious it is, I see why. Homemade pasta sauce canned tomatoes A shredded kale salad enhanced with a bit of crumbled feta and diced beets — the whole dressed with a lemon/anchovy vinaigrette — was just as satisfying. Tomato pasta sauce with cream I happily munched my way through it while thinking, as good as it is, how can a kale and beet salad come in at $17? Hmm …

The kitchen sent out a plate of tuna crudo for us to sample. How to make homemade pasta sauce from scratch (Yes, I was recognized, but in this room, who wasn’t?) Topped with a watermelon, cucumber and tomato salsa, the velvety slices of fish were further enhanced with black sesame seeds, nasturtium leaves and a few dots of spicy aioli. Homemade easy pasta sauce What’s not to like?

Avoiding the richer-sounding pastas like the agnolotti with braised veal and wild mushrooms, or the lobster tagliolini with preserved tomatoes and garlic, we opted for a shared portion of eggplant ravioli. Homemade pasta sauce crock pot Garnished with ricotta salata, herbs and a luscious lemon sauce, the ravioli was such a sensual mix, with the silky pasta and sweet tomatoes swooshing around in that buttery sauce. Homemade pasta sauce recipe Insanely good.

There was bound to be one disappointment in what was otherwise a very strong meal, and that was the veal paillard. White sauce recipe for pasta and chicken I once enjoyed a pounded veal chop served breaded and topped with arugula and cherry tomatoes here, which I recall was a Bice signature dish. Tomato sauce recipe for pasta easy This one felt like the spa version of the latter, as the naked veal paillard was grilled and topped with the same garnish, along with some Parmesan and a zigzag of balsamic vinegar. Homemade pasta sauce in crockpot As good as it sounds, it was surprisingly lacklustre, with the veal tasting mostly of pepper and the arugula lacking its usual bite.

Instead, I’d highly recommend the salmon filet, a nice chunk of perfectly cooked fish served with a radish and tomato salsa on top of a bed of cannellini beans. Homemade pasta sauce for lasagna Wow! Just when you thought salmon was the most predictable Montreal restaurant main course, along comes a simple version like this to make you swoon all over again. Homemade pasta and sauce Fabulous.

Desserts in this restaurant have always been terrific, and they still are. Homemade pasta sauce food network I only had two: a delectable caramel ice cream cake served with caramel-coated popcorn that disappeared so quickly (after not even wanting dessert) that I was tempted to lick the plate clean. Homemade spaghetti sauce from scratch food network And then there were the cannoli, three crackling tubes of pastry bliss filled with sweet whipped ricotta. Homemade tomato sauce for pasta Though lacking the bubbly shell of the best cannoli, these babies had the ideal creamy/crunchy contrast going on and tasted just great.

As mentioned above, dinner at Beatrice may not set you back as much as in the Bice days, but you still have to count on at least $100 per person with wine. Homemade pasta sauce using fresh tomatoes Steep, yes, but keep in mind that you are in the heart of the city, eating beautiful food made with pristine ingredients, on a terrasse worthy of a Nancy Meyers movie. Tomato pasta sauce jamie oliver (My one big complaint about the terrasse, though, is the wall of artificial greenery that emits a distinct odour of old plastic patio furniture.) And there’s always that $25 lunch menu for those dining on a budget. Easy homemade sauce for pasta So if you’re up for a bit of luxurious dining, give it a try, because at Beatrice, they’ve got the alfresco glamour factor down pat.

You can hear Lesley Chesterman on ICI Radio-Canada Première’s Médium Large (95.1 FM) Tuesdays at 10 a.m., and on CHOM (97.7 FM) Wednesdays at 7:10 a.m.