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From a great raw bar to a top-notch menu Lucille’s Oyster Dive offers a great dining experience

Lucille’s Oyster Dive opened its first location on Monkland Avenue in NDG back in 2009.  For reasons I cannot properly explain, it took me 14 years to enjoy my first experience and wow was this ever a treat!

There are now five restaurant locations – NDG, Fairview Pointe-Claire, Dix30 in Brossard, Laval and Mont Tremblant. In addition, there is a summer pop-up at Atwater Market,  three food trucks and a catering division. We decided to enjoy our first Lucille’s experience at Fairview.

Under the watchful eye of executive chef Mark Gaffney, the kitchens at Lucille’s are headlined by an outstanding raw bar, tantalizing starters, seafood and steaks. The goal from day one has been to provide patrons with the best selection of both east and west-coast oysters. According to seasonal availability, the oyster selection changes daily.  

Cayleigh Starr is one of six managing partners at Lucille’s and she spoke with great enthusiasm about the future of this small, but growing chain.  Are there plans to open any new locations? “We are looking at introducing a downtown location next year,”  she told me. “Exactly where I am not at liberty to say at this time. After that, we might be ready to go out of province.”

While we heard great things about each of Lucille’s locations, we chose  Fairview since it was still terrasse season. Theirs sits 120 people and we couldn’t have been happier. This restaurant opened in March of 2022. It can accommodate over 400 indoors. One room has a neat set of garage doors, which can swing open in the warm weather season. “This is such a beautiful and multi-faceted room,” Starr said. “We call it our solarium.”

Our server Mas really helped steer us in the right direction for this first visit.  We started with a pino grigio and a cool glass of lemonade. From the raw bar, there was little doubt about what we would order. The half-seafood tower was absolutely perfect for two people to share. It contained fresh lobster, which was nicely cut up for us, as well as snow crab, shrimp and 12 magnificent oysters. We took our time with this treat, enjoying every morsel.

Next, as a starter, we ordered the Asian-style salmon tartare.  It came with rice noodles and lettuce wraps, the latter of which you don’t see on every menu. Making virtual lettuce wrap sandwiches also enabled us to stretch out and thoroughly appreciate this serving.

For the main course, the 45-ounce porterhouse steak caught our eye and we were very pleased with that choice. It came perfectly cooked medium rare and pre-sliced, accompanied by some chimichurri sauce. There was enough left over for us to take home and eat for supper the following evening. The dinner came with French fries, which we substituted for cheesy mashed potatoes and a salad.

Did we have room for dessert? When Mas suggested a domed chocolate mousse cake and a key lime pie, she got no arguments from us. It was a truly decadent way to end the perfect evening.

We will be back;  that is a certainty! Lucille’s Fairview Pointe-Claire is located at 6801 Autoroute Transcanadienne R001.   Opening hours are 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday to Wednesday and 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Thursday to Saturday. For more information call 438-618-0006 or log on to  https://www.luci llesoyster.com/

Mike Cohen

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