When Jay and I make our autumn trips to Montreal, we tend to return year after year to our favorite places to eat. They’re so good, we can’t help it. Au Pied de Cochon on Rue Duluth is usually our first-night meal, meat-heavy and wonderful after a 20-minute walk from our B&B. Along with its namesake dish, there are imaginative foie gras presentations, charcuterie plates, “duck in a can,” and, if you still have room, pouding chomeur, a homestyle cakey dessert soaked with maple syrup and heated in the wood-burning oven. Really popular these days, reservations are a must, cholesterol be damned. Another gem: L’Express, a casual/chic bistro on Rue St. Denis with all the proper decor (bentwood chairs, black-and-white tiled floor, mirror behind the zinc bar) as well as the proper bistro menu (oysters, steak tartare, pot au feu, veal kidneys, chicken and fish specials, crème caramel) prepared so well that the place is full at breakfast, lunch and dinner. No reservation? You can usually dine at the bar and be treated royally. Pictured, our customary final-night dinner spot, Au Petit Extra, corner of Rue Ontario and Rue Papineau. Nathalie, our favorite waitress, has worked here for some 25 years (did she start as an infant?) and always remembers us no matter how long ago our last visit. Their soupe de poisson, wonderful. Confit de canard, bavette avec frites, superb. So is everything else we’ve tried, the menu for all of it displayed on chalkboards throughout. Filled with locals, this open and airy place always has us smiling, looking forward to our next visit, wishing we could accommodate more than just three meals in each day.