Lili Co. is a newly opened brunch spot in the Plateau Mont-Royal neighborhood. The former form of Lili Co. was the Bistro Bienville, which closed in December of 2012. I visited there with my friend Karen after our don’t-know-how-many postponed brunch date.
The restaurant was empty when we arrived. The owner greeted us warmly and led us to our table right away. The ambiance of the restaurant is quite “masculine” (as Karen said) comparing to other brunch spots in Montreal. Besides brunch on the weekend, the restaurant serves dinner during the weekday.
The restaurant isn’t spacious. I would say that they have a pretty good ventilation system installed. The open kitchen didn’t not make the entire restaurant smell greasy or smokey. In fact, very little noise was made while the chef was preparing for the meal! (Or it might be just because we were too into our conversation).
Karen and I ordered it to share as a small sweet to begin with. I loved it! It was warm and fluffy, and the jam wasn’t too sweet. However, this is different than the traditional scones. I would consider it as a muffin instead of a scone.
While we were talking, the owner came over to apologize that they have messed up our orders, and offered to treat us the doughnuts while waiting for our orders. Normally, I don’t like doughnuts (because it’s deep-fried). However, their doughnut is NOT greasy at all! I didn’t feel like I was eating any deep-fried food. The outside was crunchy while the inside was still moist and not hollow. It was perfect with the butter caramel that I scraped it off with my fork!
I ordered this as my main, since this is the only dish with the meat that I would eat (besides their banana pancakes and bacon, but I wasn’t in the mood for sweets). Gésiers (aka gizzards) are a tough muscle in birds that grinds the grain they eat, but when confit in duck fat, they become nice and tender. The gésiers were surprisingly good. They were so tender that it doesn’t taste like any other glands that I’ve ever had before! I strongly recommend this one if you ever have a chance to visit!
Karen ordered this! Check out her blog to see what she has to say about it!
Overall, this is definitely an interesting brunch place to try it out. The dishes they have on their menu have interesting and unusual ingredients that you would not see in ordinary brunch restaurants! It is nice to see that they are trying to distinguish and be competitive in Montreal where there are myriads brunch spots.