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Projet Pilote
Photograph: Rachel. La rue. / @ruerachelmtl / Facebook

Projet Pilote is a distillery, brewery, restaurant, and bar—all in one place in Montreal

This ambitious space is a playground for gin lovers, beer lovers, wine lovers, diners, and all of the above.

JP Karwacki
Written by
Tommy Dion
Translated by
JP Karwacki
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We'd call it a new bar, but it's so much more than that: Located in the heart of the Plateau Mont-Royal, the newly-arrived Projet Pilote offers a unique concept: Housing both a micro-brewery and a micro-distillery under one roof, owner and distiller Guillaume Drapeau has secured a commercial license for his operation, which means that Pilote can serve customers its own gins and fruit-based spirits (and eventually whiskey)—all freshly distilled and made into cocktails.

In addition to Drapeau acting as the distiller, other talents such as Martin Allaire, Jean-Patrick Sturgeon, Justin Presseau and Léon Buser-Rivet—respectively brewer, sommelier, mixologist, and chef—have all joined the team to transform this its 30 foot-high space with a glass mezzanine.

While the distillery fuels the cocktails on offer—classics and spins on classics like a Matcha Colada, Jungle Bird, Oaxaca Old Fashioned—there's also a number of light and easy-drinking beers brewed on site, as well as organic and biodynamic wines, and a menu composed of snacks that will change with the seasons.

Chef Buser-Rivet (Monarque) has set up a garden right on the roof as well, where the vegetables and fresh herbs he uses in his dishes are grown alongside hops that are used for their beer.

For now, the menu features several small vegetable dishes —garden cucumbers with buttermilk dressing, radishes and rabiole with butter and fleur de sel, gazpacho —which are the perfect pairing to shrimp tartine, stuffed zucchini flowers, chips and homemade focaccia.

Just spacious enough to accommodate about 120 people after pandemic restrictions end, the space emphasizes an industrial look thanks to the still and the beer vats, but it's still chic and timeless. 

Projet Pilote is open seven days a week in the Plateau at 980 Rue Rachel East from 4 p.m. to midnight.

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