Upscale Bistro on the Avenue serves mains with flair

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Bistro on the Avenue, a classy eatery on Greene Ave., is a home away from home since 1991 for loyal customers who live in Westmount and adjacent.

Behind the glass storefront is an elongated and high-ceilinged room, with a long bar on the left, booths and tables on the right and down the length to the kitchen. It is painted in soft colours and bathed in equally soft light.

The more secluded mezzanine

with a view of the diners below is a few steps up.

The brass rails, art-deco light fixtures, white-covered tables, and black and white tiled floor give it an air of quiet elegance.

The menu and wine list cover a nice middle range for a New York-style bistro.

Though I have to limit my red-meat intake, it was my time to eat like a true Canuck, so I chose the rib steak, medium rare, with fries and the house minestrone soup.

It is offered at $28 as part of the table d’hôte, with a choice of soup or salad.

The soup was quite small—you have to pay extra for the larger size—but quite authentic, with red beans, chunks of tomato and a few noodles in the mix.

The steak was grilled as I requested, not too thick and not too fat. It was lightly spiced.

Barbara ordered the Mahi Mahi ($26) from the table d’hôte, done to perfection, with a spicy coating that came with lots of veggies, al dente as she likes them.

The Caesar salad (an additional $1.50) was small and a bit wilted.

We shared the Key lime pie ($6.99) for dessert, a tart and tasty treat, not too sweet, and enjoyed the excellent coffee. Coffees range from $2.75 for regular to $4.50 for latte.

The service was attentive, polite and unrushed, though the server did not know the cost of the various coffees, which is not indicated on the menu.

The restaurant serves breakfast Monday to Friday from 7 to 11 am, offers a luncheon special with soup or salad at $14.95, and serves an extensive brunch on weekends.

Bistro on the Avenue is at 1362 Greene. 514-939-6451.

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