I came to HappyCow to research restaurants for my visit to Montréal, and I could not help seeing how unhappy many vegetarian and vegans were with Commensal's change to "flexitarian" dining. You will all be delighted to hear they have changed back, and are now branded as Resto Végo with the tagline "Complètement Végé - Le Goût pour le futur" (Completely veggie - the taste for the future)!
I visited Resto Végo at St Denis for lunch today and was absolutely delighted by it. I am used to buffet dining at Tibits in London (and have also visited the "original" Tibits in Zürich), and must say that Resto Végo beats them all. It has an absolutely HUGE hot and cold buffet selection - off the top of my head, I'd say there were at least 21 hot dishes and 24 cold dishes and salads. More than half of the hot dishes and more than two-thirds of the cold were vegan. There is also a fruit buffet and a dessert buffet - of the 12 or so cakes, 3 were vegan today. There was also a sorbet cabinet.
The hot and cold buffet is the same price - $2.35 per 100g. The fruit buffet is cheaper, $2.15 per 100g, and the dessert buffet is more expensive, $2.65 per 100g. A notice in French advises you not to combine fruit or coulis with cakes to save money.
The food was delicious and managed to combine "healthy" with tasty. Nothing I had was the least bit greasy (although I must admit that the vegan spring rolls and some of the cheesy dishes looked a bit high in fat - but then they're deep-fried spring rolls and cheese, what do you expect?). I particularly appreciated that all dishes were labelled in both French and English, with a description as well as a name, so you could be sure that you'd picked up something appropriate for your diet. Like Tibits, they have a pictorial labelling system - V for vegan, picture of a milk carton for "contains dairy", CSG for gluten-free.
My dining partner and I ate everything on our plates and will definitely return multiple times during our stay here in Montréal.
Negative points? The only one I can honestly think of is that the restaurant is not wheelchair-accessible. There is one large step to get into the restaurant (although this is good for Montréal, a city which has a lot of snow), and then the buffet itself is up a short flight of stairs. Obviously a wheelchair user who can walk a bit could get into the restaurant with help, but both the buffet and toilets are upstairs.
I would rate it 5 stars if I could!Pros: Completely vegetarian, Tons of vegan options
Cons: Not wheelchair-accessible