Where: So you’re a sandwich lover, are you? Think you’re the sandwich king of the city, do you? Let me tell you something – you’ve got nothing on this place. Café Titanic lies in the heart of Old Montreal, resting in the basement of a beautiful building at 445 Saint-Pierre (between Notre-Dame and Saint-Paul).
Kind of Food: Café Titanic prides themselves as a German restaurant, but you won’t find any giant sausages around here. This establishment cooks up some of the meanest sandwiches around, as well as a vegetarian macaroni & cheese, filo (phyllo) dough casseroles, and grilled vegetable salads. You can order from their impressive menus or just rock up to the cafeteria-style counters and grab whatever you want.
Usual Suspects: Since the restaurant is only open from 8:00 – 4:30pm, Monday to Friday, you’ll usually find yourself among suit-clad businesspeople, scurrying around to grab the best scoff before someone else does. I’ve never been there before noon, but I’d have to imagine it’s the same situation all day.
Why I love it: Honestly, it’s fantastic. The food has blown me away every time I’ve eaten there and the staff/service is phenomenal. The dining room is equally dramatic, featuring brick walls, wooden tables, lowered chandeliers. Oh, and the front door has a porthole in it. Awesome.
Why you’ll love it: While it may be a little pricey for lunch (sandwich ~$10), the atmosphere of the restaurant will let you give in to your desires and order just a little of everything on the menu. When you walk up to the counter, you’ll be astounded by how heavenly each dish is presented. Put it this way – any sandwich that takes you over 10 minutes to eat earns my respect. There’s no reason why it shouldn’t earn yours.
Who to take: Anyone. I’d take my girlfriend, my grandmother, and even my girlfriend’s parents. If you’re down in the Old Port during the week and want to escape the tourist crowd for an appetizing lunch, this is the place for everyone. It would be a great place for a daytime date, as well – it would help you reach that “sophisticated academic” level you’ve been striving to achieve.
I ordered: Since they were all out of the Pork Milanese – my usual chow – I ordered the Citrus Chicken Breast sandwich. The sandwich is served on an oversized Kaiser bun, stuffed with goat cheese, lettuce, grilled bell peppers, green onion and Portobello mushrooms. Take advantage of their drink selection too; can’t go wrong with a can of San Pellegrino to (in the voice of Samuel L. Jackson) “wash down” that tasty sandwich.
Staff Recommendation: The man behind the register rocks blue-tone aviator shades, looking a little half-baked as he dutifully serves you with respect. In the past, he’s recommended the Pork Milanese sandwich, which is a deep-fried pork cutlet, served with coleslaw and veggies on a ciabatta bun. It’s excellent. Other staff members have also suggested the broiled mac & cheese (vegetarian), which looks equally mean but would probably leave your co-workers gasping for air (if you catch my drift… ahem.)
Rating / Price: 4.5/5 / $$