ChuChai

  • Vegan Vegan
    ( 53 reviews )
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514-843-4194
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4088 rue St Denis (at Duluth), Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Fine dining Thai vegetarian restaurant offering many choices, all of which are now fully vegan (since spring 2013). Prices moderate to slightly expensive. Confirmed open, Apr 2017. Their less expensive version of the same food, Chuch (lunch express style), had shut in early-2014. Open Tue-Sat 11:00am-2:00pm, Tue-Wed 5:00pm-10:00pm, Thu-Sat 5:00pm-11:00pm.

Categories: Vegan, Organic, Thai, Beer/Wine, Asian

53 Reviews

First Review by tragedia

thai & vegan à Montréal - Edit

Certains plats sont chers (19$ pour pas grand chose) mais la plupart ont un bon rapport qualité/prix : tout est bon, je conseille surtout le pad thai au "canard" et la soupe Tom Kah aux légumes. Le resto est bien placé (tout près du parc La Fontaine) et plutôt chic

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Fantastic Vegan Fare in Montreal - Edit

Was visiting Montreal and stayed in the Mont Royal/Plateau neighborhood where we discovered this vegan gem. Beautiful decor, great service and unbelievably delicious all vegan Thai food. Well thought out cocktails were an added plus. Don't miss this one!

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Delicious fake meat - Edit

Their "duck" is their specialty! It is hands down the best fake meat I've ever had! A bit pricey thought....

Pros: Food , Variety

Cons: small portions , expensive

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Restaurant incontournable pour de la cuisine thaïlandaise entièrement végétalienne - Edit

Je fréquente exclusivement des restaurants véganes et végétariens mais, pour une raison que je ne m'explique pas, je n'avais pas encore considéré ChuChai. Et pourtant! Mon expérience a été plus que positive.
J'ai pris la table d'hôte (qui comprend 6 entrées différentes réunies dans une même assiette, 2 demi-portions de plats principaux et un trio de desserts pour 50$) et ai donc eu la chance de goûter à une multitude de plats. Tous étaient délicieux! La variété des mets proposés mêlée au mélange des saveurs, de la sauce à l'arachide jusqu'au cari panang, offrent une expérience culinaire satisfaisante. Et le tout sans aucun produit d'origine animale! Évidemment, il faut aimer la cuisine thaïlandaise et être willing de goûter à des fausses viandes (le fameux "canard" laqué de ChuChai mais aussi du "bœuf", du "poulet", etc.). Elles sont bien apprêtées et je crois bien que même un omnivore n'y verrait que du feu! À noter toutefois que les plats sont légèrement overpriced. Les portions sont amplement suffisantes mais les assiettes ne contiennent, au final, que peu d'ingrédients (p. ex. si vous choisissez le riz au "poulet", c'est exactement ce que vous aurez: pas ou peu de légumes!). Si vous venez à 2 ou en groupe, je vous recommande fortement de prendre et de partager plusieurs plats dans la section Thaïpas du menu. Vous pourrez ainsi goûter à beaucoup de saveurs différentes tout en divisant les coûts entre les convives. Cela dit, si vous visitez le restaurant pour la première fois, craquez pour la table d'hôte: elle n'est pas souvent mentionnée par le restaurant (ni sur les reviews des clients, d'ailleurs) mais elle vaut amplement le détour. Considérant la qualité de ce qui est offert par le restaurant (et l'expérience qui est, malgré la quantité de restaurants végétariens et végétaliens à Montréal, plutôt unique!), vous en aurez pour votre argent.
Outre la nourriture, l'ambiance est agréable et intime (tables rapprochées, lumières tamisées, pas de musique forte, etc.). Le service était attentionné et rapide.
Bref, si vous avez un craving pour de la cuisine thaïlandaise et/ou si vous vous sentez d'humeur à découvrir l'univers des imitations de viande, ChuChai est un restaurant incontournable à Montréal. Pensez toutefois à réserver si vous planifiez vous y rendre un soir de fin de semaine. Service de livraison aussi disponible. Highly recommended overall.

Updated from previous review on 2017-03-05

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Loved! - Edit

We were 2 couples, sharing starters and mains and it was all amazingly good food, nice cocktails, and attentive staff. While we were raving about our meals we over heard a woman at the next table raving about her desert which looked like a chocolate tart, unfortunately we ate so much that desert was going to be impossible. It ended up being a bit pricey but SO, SO, SO worth it!

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Always delicious - Edit

I'm never disappointed by Chu Chai! Although I've moved away now and can only get there once in a while, it is worth the trip. Highly recommend the crispy mock duck and the pad thai. Cocktails are extremely good as well.
Sit on the patio if the weather permits, and watch pedestrian traffic flow by.

Pros: Excellent food, Nice vibe, Attentive staff

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Great Thai food - Edit

The food at ChuChai was delicious. We got a mock chicken curry and a mock shrimp dish. Also got the chocolate avocado mousse which was delicious, and ordered some of their drink specials which were excellent.

Pros: Good food, Good service

Cons: Expensive, Not very hot and spicy for Thai food.

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Vegan

  Contributions +22

so expensive but so good (4.5/5) - Edit

best vegan thai food.
its my go-to if ever i want to show a friend a pricey but next-level veg restaurant in montreal.
you can get it delivered by separate company which is nice
nice location and, as far as i can remember, nice patio
i get the mango salad and red duck curry usually. a couple of years ago i had a thansgiving (?) special containing duck and cranberries and oooooomg that was it for me
ive tried to find recipes that imitate the red duck curry and im still working on it. kefir lime leaves are a must to replicate it (to any minimal degree) at home.

Pros: so, ah, mazing

Cons: wishing they offered a student discount, expensive, portions medium to small

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Delicious and great service - Edit

Came here on a quiet Wednesday night. Excellent and friendly service and delicious food. Enjoyed my tasty General Tao tofu dish and my omnivore boyfriend LOVED his 'duck' dish, he was very impressed. Recommended!

Pros: open late, location, yummy

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Vegan Thai fusion - Edit

Chuchai will always be a staple for me when I feel like spending money. The duck (soy sauce or black pepper) is a must and I got the beef in curry sauce last time I went which was to die for. It is not cheap and the plates do not have a wife variety of ingredients (many menu items come with just what is written ie just the mock duck, no veggies or rice). Great if you are going to share because you can order a side of rice, a couple of mock meat dishes and a veg dish.

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Excellent! Always enjoy coming back - Edit

Having travelled to Thailand a few times, I can say that this place is doing it right. The food has always been fantastic, with a layering of flavours (good counter-point of sweet, salty, sour, and spicy). The mock meats are well executed, especially the 'duck'. If mock meat does not float your boat, there are a number of tasty items on the menu.

The cocktails are fantastic...especially the MK2 (loved it!!!).

And then there's the ambience - a perfect night out in a sophisticated restaurant with good customer service. All of this said, you will pay for the experience, but it's worth it, in my books at least.

Pros: Food , Choice, Ambience

Cons: Price

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Sophisticated Thai Food - Edit

We really enjoyed eating here! The food was really interesting, and exciting - especially if you like mock meat! We started off with two delicious starters, of mock 'chicken' skewers and tofu pocket that were filled with ingredients which made them look like dainty cucumber sandwiches! We felt the tofu was definitely one not to miss! The mains were great too; we shared crispy 'duck' and a dish with mock prawns, and had rice between the two of us. Some people might find they need extra rice, as the portion wasn't massive, but we felt it was just right for us. The service was absolutely impeccable too. All in all, a great meal and we felt the price was reasonable for the quality.

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so bad we walked out - Edit

I had heard good things about ChuChai so decided to try it out. We sat on the front patio and ordered the chicken skewers in peanut sauce, lemongrass shrimp salad, and beef in Penang curry.

Service and atmosphere were fine. But the food was gross. The peanut sauce tasted like sickeningly sweet peanut butter (no tang or other flavor at all) and the shrimp tasted just like soap. The texture was revolting. We couldn't eat them. We canceled our main dish (the beef) and left. They charged us for just one of the dishes, and the waitress seemed upset that we were so displeased with the food.

We found this to be bad vegan food and bad thai food - just bad food all around. Such a disappointment because most of the vegan food I've had in Montreal has been great.

Pros: nice atmosphere, decent service

Cons: unbalanced flavor, tastes like soap, too sweet; appetizer tasted like dessert

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Asian option - Edit

Having marketed itself as fine dining, I was a little disappointed. The water was tap water with quite a profound odor and taste and the napkins where disposable. The ambiance was dark but the staff was attentive and very helpful.
The appetizer (fresh spring roll) was excellent. The meals were all tasty - on person had a green curry, one the pad thai, and the other the duck. One person accepted rice, and was surprised to see a $3 charge on her bill, although I had seen it on the menu. My dish was the pad thai, and it was sweet. I was thirsty later, and I'm not sure it was because I couldn't drink the water or because in typical asian fare there is salt and sugar in the dish. The portion looked small, but I was absolutely stuffed even after skipping lunch to do a 50K bike ride.

Pros: Tasty!, Excellent service!

Cons: not exactly fine dining

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Bye bye, would never go back. - Edit

i really wanted to love this place. I am not Thai but grew up around the same region. i really wanted some "taste of childhood". So i went back here after 6 years, after reading so many good reviews at happycow. Again, i am disappointed and i guess, i would never go back again! For me, food was not great and for the same price,i could eat something more hearty some where else!
i went alone for weekday lunch. Had Tomyam soup. Tasted sour only, not a remote taste of spicy at all! i was shocked as this was not really the kind of Tom yam soup i expected! Not a single things except for a few floating mock shrimps and 2 ,ok, may be 3, quarter mushrooms.($6) On top of that, i ordered from the set menu. Since someone mentioned that the sweet spinach was awesome, so i wanted to give it a try. i had rice with peanut sauce mock chicken and sweet spinach. The set meal ($15) came with wanton soup or 2 spring rolls. Spring rolls were so so. Spinach wasn't any superior than any other chinese restaurant. Mock chicken peanut rice came with really just the chicken in sauce, not a single other vege (i thought i could cook better than this!). Rice was small. The only thumb up was the big pot of Thai tea (included in set menu) at the end of the meal. The tea was the only thing in the correct portion for the price. :)
Waiter was ok, no complaint.

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i went there with my boyfriend and his mom. His mom loved the food, eventhough it is rather pricy. 2 starters, 2 curries, a fried rice and 3 desserts at more than 100 bucks.
As an Asian, i am very very disappointed as the food is not authentically Thai. The typical modified version of western kind of Asian food.
The curries tasted SWEET (!) instead of spicy or hot. Every food is kind of sweet.
The waiters/waitresses were friendly but not attentive. Too eager to get the table clean eventhough we haven't finished the food yet.
With the restaurant less than half filled and more than 5 waiters, they even did not notice that a guest spilled her drinks and got wet.
If you like western kind of Thai food (the authentic Thai food might be too hot to many), then this restaurant is kind of serve 'good food' then. It looked nice, clean and western too (decoration).
By the way, every dishes were 'designed' for single serving. So the portion was very small and if you intendws to share it, then order a few more dishes!
Updated from previous review on Saturday May 31, 2008

Pros: clean

Cons: Food, Service, price

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Nice food but high prices and small portions - Edit

I went there for dinner with maybe too high expectations. I've found the food relatively good but not really amazing in comparison to its price and the small quantity. However, it's great that the restaurant turned completely vegan. I would recommend it to discover thai food but I won't go back in priority when back in Montreal.

Pros: nice Asian food, 100% vegan

Cons: pricey and small portions, busy place

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Tasty, nice atmosphere, but expensive for the quality, - Edit

Came on a busy Saturday night, staff were great and all spoke English. Had sake, fried dumplings, pad Thai, and fried veggies over rice. Quality was very good, and the vegan meats were eerily realistic ( a good thing). Altogether we really enjoyed it here, but it was a bit pricey ($55 after tax).

Pros: staff, quality, atmosphere

Cons: price, only 1. beer

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Vegan Thai Food - Edit

Excellent thai food. You can choose from a variety of deliciously prepared mock meats, but there is also a wide array of tofu and veggie dishes.

Pros: Terrace, Upscale décor, Friendly staff

Cons: Expensive, Small portions

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Amazing Asian-style Vegan food - Edit

So glad we decided to stop at this place- definitely one of the food highlights of a trip to Montreal. The atmosphere was pleasant, with a nice outdoor seating area. We got a stuffed tofu appetizer, which was spicy and delicious and then had hands down the best Tom Kha soup EVER. The pad see ew (I think that's what it was- broad noodles with a sweet, spicy sauce) was really flavorful. The tapioca pudding dessert is one of the best things I've ever eaten. I ordered it reluctantly, never having been a big fan of tapioca pudding, but our waiter recommended it and it was fantastic. Definitely don't miss that pudding! The service was pleasant and efficient.

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Always deilcious!! - Edit

I've been going here for quite a few years, and it's always sooo good. my favourite entree is the breaded seaweed that has a sweet and tangy sauce. Like a lot of places, it's always so hard to stray away from my favourite dish, simple deep-fried tofu with peanut butter sauce and crispy spinach. Their crispy spinach is better than any other asian restaurant that I've tried. There's also a wonderful duck dish with coconut milk curry, pineapple, and other veggies. The only thing I wasn't so crazy about was the shrimp, but that's just me as the others liked it. The pad thai also isn't one of their stronger dishes. For dessert, the coconut tapioca pudding is really delicious. Yes, it is more expensive than a veggie burger, but not any more so than any thai place that isn't take out.

Pros: great sauces, delicious entrees

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The best! - Edit

I am a thai girl who has been vegetarian for over 20 years. I can say that the food in this restaurant is really thai because all the staff in the kitchen are thai.my husband and I really love eating here. The owner is really nice.

Pros: Amazing food , Nice restaurant , Nice staff

Cons: Price, Often full

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Good - Edit

I went to a wedding that was catered by chuchai, it was my first time eating their food and I have to say it was really good. Most people at the wedding were meat eaters and they didn't even realize that they were not eating meat.

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Contemporary, expensive, good - Edit

Get a reservation for the weekends for this uptown restaurant. The food is mostly organic, a good thing. This makes the price a little expensive.

The flavors are good, but not enough to send you to the moon. The portions are true French portions, although the food is mainly Thai. When it says spicy, it is not that spicy. We ordered the medium spice and could have gone up a notch.

For three people - 2 appetizers, 3 main course, 2 glasses of wine, soda was over $100 and we were hungry an hour later. But it is a great date place and the food is clean without a lot of oil. Service was very good.

Parking is REALLY difficult on a weekend, so take a metro or cab and save yourself the headache.

Pros: Fun atmosphere, Clean food, Nice flavors

Cons: Pricey for portions , A little loud, No parking

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Thai food for vegans and non-vegans alike - Edit

I took my fiance here and he actually liked the mock pad thai. I avoid gluten and was skeptical of seitan in some of the mock meats so I have the green curry and it was good. The food stayed nice and hot. The atmosphere was nice. The service was very good. My only complaint would be that the vegetables in the curry were not fully cooked.

Pros: location, menu variety, appeals to vegans and non vegans

Cons: gluten frree menu would be nice

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Delicious Asian food. - Edit

Some people say it is not authentic Thai food. Who cares? Thai food is full of fish sauce and shrimp paste anyway!
We went to Chuchai on our last night in Montreal. It was no cheap but it was really tasty and a great experience altogether. They have menus in English and French which were very convenient for us.
We started with the curry puffs and the deep fried seaweed in a sweet and spicy sauce. The curry puffs were nice enough but looked and tasted more or less like samosas. On the other hand, the seaweed dish was amazing!
Then we had the fake chicken with peanut sauce and fried spinach. That was so delicious. The spinach was also a bit sweet and unlike anything I tasted before. Very delicate flavours. We also had some red curry which was great too. The sticky rice is absolutely perfect. Our dishes rated 2 on the scale of 3 for spiciness but we did not find then spicy at all.
We were told that they do not use dairy or eggs in the cooking, but still use milk in coffee and honey in desserts so it is not yet a vegan restaurant but hopefully they will move to.
Totally worth trying in Montreal.

Pros: Mostly vegan, Attentive service, Great food

Cons: Not spicy enough, Pricey

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Awesome gourmet food - Edit

Atmosphere is upscale and lively. Always packed. Selection of food is extensive and the quality of the food is great. Nice place to go for dinner.

Pros: excellent food, excellent selection, lively

Cons: noisy, expensive

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