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“Good but overpriced poutine” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Casse-Croute La Banquise

Casse-Croute La Banquise
994 Rue Rachel E, Montreal, Quebec H2J 2J3, Canada (Le Plateau Mont-Royal)
+ 1 514 525 2415
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Ranked #89 of 4,419 Restaurants in Montreal
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Price range: $4 - $8
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Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Dining on a budget, Local cuisine
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Late Night, Reservations, Takeout
Neighborhood: Le Plateau Mont-Royal
Montreal
Top Contributor
263 reviews 263 reviews
171 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 87 cities Reviews in 87 cities
134 helpful votes 134 helpful votes
“Good but overpriced poutine”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

Going to La Banquise is all well and good if you are a tourist or if you are living on the Plateau and don't have a car. They offer a vast selection of poutines. And while they are quite good, they are also pretty expensive by poutine standards. But since the best poutine joints are outside of the city, if you don't mind overpaying and if you are a traveler seeking his or her first taste of what made the poutine so famous, La Banquise offers a tasty fare that should scratch that itch!

Visited October 2012
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768 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Montreal, Canada
Top Contributor
90 reviews 90 reviews
28 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
“Poutine, Poutine and more Poutine”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2012

Never had poutine? Not sure you'll like it? This place has something like 24 different types. If you don't like one, try another. It's really great. Especially after a long night of drinking, you can come here and binge greasy, gooey food.

Visited June 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montreal, Canada
Top Contributor
65 reviews 65 reviews
49 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
“Good but not the best”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2012

This place is very popular and busy.
Their specialty is poutine. Poutine is french fries with special sauce and cheese.

Price is reasonable for hamburger, fries, etc.
Parking is relatively easy depending on the time of day.

  • Visited August 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montreal, Canada
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“No! Why?”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2012

Dear Montrealers,
Why do you idolize this place!? The poutines are terrible!! The fries are bad, as is the gravy, without that, what's a poutine?! I get the charm of having a whole slew of choices and toppings, but if the foundation isn't good, adding chopped hot dogs and cheap hot pepper rings isn't changing anything. If you recommend this place and you've only ever eaten it at 3am+, keep in mind EVERYTHING is delicious after a night of drinking. They don't have good poutine, they just don't.

Visited July 2012
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Nanaimo, Canada
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Go for the poutine, don't bother otherwise. Credit cards not accepted.”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2012

On our last day in Quebec, we were looking for the one 'regional' food we had not yet had on our trip...poutine. A bit of a search on Tripadvisor, a check on the map, and we found La Banquise. After experiencing this restaurant, I would recommend that if you want a wide variety of poutine, or you're drunk and hungry, this is probably the place for you, but if neither of those describe you, don't even bother.
Apart from the poutine, the food was actually slightly worse than your average greasy-spoon diner. I'm not going to delve too much into the poutine side of things, other than to echo a number of other reviews here....very wide variety of poutine combinations, and if you are a lover of said food, you probably can't go wrong here. Still, I'm not convinced that the 'classique' poutine is any better than run-of-the-mill poutine I've had in other non-Montreal places.
I also ate a Banquise Burger, and this was a less-than-average hamburger. White sesame seed bun, sort of stale. Not particularly large, even though the menu seems to imply that it is somehow tremendous. Tasteless sauce. Not worth trying. Even the canned pop (soda) was warm. Think high-school cafeteria. If it's late at night and you're coming off a prolonged bout of drinking, yeah, I can see how you might be happy with this place, but basically anything that has bread and meat works after many rounds of alcohol.
The decor is of the too-many-layers-of-repainting, college-student variety. Everything looks a little rough. It was very loud in there, not through music, but through the large number of clients and yelling from the kitchen. It was very crowded-feeling, but the place seems very popular, and they probably have a pretty quick turnover of customers, so that's not surprising.
The service was not very good. I think the place may be understaffed for the volume of people with which they're dealing. I would describe the manner of the wait staff as indifferent and/or rushed. After we were seated, we probably waited about 10-15 minutes for somebody to take our order. Once the order was placed, it didn't take too long to arrive, but our drinks never showed up, and we never again saw the waitress who had originally taken our order, so we had to just bug some other random member of the wait staff for our drinks. Nobody ever stopped to ask about our meal, and nobody ever showed up to bring us our bill, so once again we had to bug a random waitress.
Also note that credit cards are not accepted. Debit or cash is all.
In summary, the two things that could recommend this restaurant are the poutine and the cheap prices. Otherwise, it's crowded, noisy, the service is not that good, and the non-poutine food is below-average, even for a greasy-spoon diner. I won't be going back.

  • Visited October 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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