Located close to the burgeoning Quartier des Spectacles and near the lively downtown core on a nearly undetectable street is Furco. But don't be fooled by its discreet location – the place is happening. Tucked on rue Mayor corner rue Saint-Alexandre (behind the beautiful St. James church), the line-up that begins to form early on in the evening is an indication that this is a best-kept secret by Montrealers in the know.
Open for a little over six months now, it is a budding hotspot for young professionals and city dwellers. Situated in what was once Montreal's fur district (hence the name), Furco is where a 5 à 7 gathering quickly turns into a party when the sun goes down.
Small dishes, as well as main meals and desserts, also make up the menu, which is cleverly written on sheets of paper clipped to a clothing line above the kitchen. Boasting fresh ingredients that change weekly according to produce, the list of options range from seafood dishes to beef tartare. If you are in the mood to share or nibble on something small, ordering a cheese and charcuterie plate or a side of French fries is also an option.
On a recent visit, food and drinks are on the menu. The scallop gravlax, served on a bed of cucumber salad, is lightly smoked and bursts in flavour, while the poached egg accompanied by deep-fried zucchini and bacon hits the spot after a hard day of work.
Furco has an extensive wine list and as for the cocktail menu, I am told it is on its way. In the meantime, try the cocktail du jour or ask one of their friendly bartenders to concoct the drink of your choice and they will happily do so.
The overall vibe can best be described as having a lively ambiance while still maintaining a relaxed and unpretentious air. The staff is friendly despite the chaotic, and at times confusing, atmosphere that follows once the bar begins to pick up. Its decor is a mix of industrial and rustic and the big bar positioned in the centre is an ideal spot for people watching and is where all the action happens. The large windows allow for natural sunlight to peak in during happy hour while at night, the lights are dimmed just right as the DJ spins great tracks. If the layout looks familiar, it's because the interior designer is the brain behind Philémon and La Buvette Chez Simone.
This weekend, grab a few of your closest friends or round up the co-workers and head to the downtown locale before this little secret is let out of the bag.