Things to do in Montreal

Best Jazz Bars in Montreal

Explore Montreal’s jazz scene, from intimate bars to glowing stages, as we journey through the city's best live music venues.

When you’re planning things to do in Montreal, be sure to add musical events to your list. Montreal is a city that loves a good tune., At the end of June and into July, the city is home to the Montreal International Jazz Festival. Local venues feature fantastic performances throughout the year. Join us for a tour of Montreal's best live jazz bars.

Downtown Montreal

Montreal’s jazz scene draws music fans from all over Canada, and some of the best clubs are in the downtown area. If you like jazz, you may want to explore other spots playing live music in Montreal.

1. Modavie

Modavie French bistro hosts live performances every night and during weekend brunch. Most evenings, you can hear jazz acts. But on Friday and Saturday, things step up a gear with blues, rock, and swing. Get ready to tap your feet and nod your head to the beat.

Since 1997, this restaurant has been serving up some of the best French cuisine in Montreal. With hearty classics such as beef tartare and rich ratatouille on the menu, you’re sure to leave feeling satisfied. Take a seat in the cozy, vintage room and wait for the show to begin.

Modavie aims to bring the locals — and those from further afield — back to their roots. We all love music, and live performances have been an important feature of gathering places, such as pubs and bars, for much of human history.

This iconic Montreal jazz bar is one of our favorite venues for traditional French food and soul-touching music.

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2. Upstairs Jazz Bar & Grill

Head to Upstairs Jazz Bar & Grill to hear some of the best jazz, Cuban, blues, and soul acts in Montreal. This local venue has been hosting jazz performances for over 25 years. On most nights, it offers two shows. You can catch the first one at 7 p.m.; the later show starts at 9:30 p.m.

The venue also serves great food, from nachos to the iconic Upstairs bourbon bacon burger. Browse the impressive wine list, or order a cocktail, and settle in for a night of great music. You can also buy merchandise, from wine glasses and coffee mugs to T-shirts and umbrellas, to spark memories of the good times spent here.

Upstairs Jazz Bar & Grill features a different act every night except Mondays, when the venue is closed. Call ahead to reserve front-row seats to the hottest jazz acts in town.

3. Grumpy's

Grumpy’s bar describes itself as “no frills,” and that’s true in the best possible way. In this classic jazz club in Montreal, you can experience the best in local independent music, along with locally brewed beers and other fuss-free drinks. It’s a down-to-earth vibe that puts the music first.

Shows usually start between 9:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. In addition to scheduled acts, regular open mic nights grace this venue, including opportunities for comedians and singer/songwriters. Practice your act and go to Grumpy’s to try it out.

There’s no better feeling than performing in front of an enraptured crowd. We should know — that’s what we do every night at our Montreal shows.

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Le Plateau Mont-Royal

Le Plateau Mont-Royal is home to many of the city's best jazz clubs. If you’re visiting Montreal at Christmas, visit these spots to get out of the cold and enjoy some time in a cozy bar, listening to melodic jazz tunes.

4. Dièse Onze

Established in May 2007, Dièse Onze has an authentic jazz cellar vibe and is one of the best jive clubs in Montreal, Canada. The venue has been recognized in publications such as Downbeat, Jazz Magazine, and Planet Jazz as a must-visit bar, so you definitely don't want to miss it.

Two performances are held daily, showcasing the best traditional jazz, gypsy jazz, flamenco, and other boogie-woogie musical styles. Dièse Onze is also a great place to grab a delicious dinner. You can order tapas to share with your friends, sink your teeth into a juicy burger or steak, or enjoy a tasty poke bowl of fresh vegetables and tofu.

We recommend Kim Richardson's homemade cheesecake for dessert — she's also one of the performers. If you’re planning to have a meal, reserve a table ahead of time, as this venue fills up fast.

5. L'Escogriffe Bar Spectacle

L’Escogriffe Bar Spectacle is located in the heart of Plateau Mont-Royal. With friendly service, creative cocktails, and fantastic musical acts, it’s no surprise it's one of the most popular jazz clubs in Montreal. You can even pick up a hoodie to show your love for this iconic downtown venue.

Watch a local band launch their new album, or enjoy a cold beer on the terrace. The venue's food will make your mouth water as your ears soak in jazz, blues, and rock sounds.

L'Escogriffe Bar Spectacle is on Saint-Denis Street, near the Mont-Royal Metro stop. It's the ideal place to unwind in the evening after a busy day exploring the sights of the Old Port of Montreal.

Saint-Laurent Boulevard

In addition to trendy boutiques, cozy cafés, and intriguing street art, you can find some of Montreal's best jazz clubs on Saint-Laurent Boulevard. Slip inside from the bustling street to discover melodies that will leave you yearning for more.

6. The Bootlegger L’Authentique

Bar Bootlegger cocktail bar & cuisine was inspired by the speakeasy clubs of the prohibition era, when restrictions on alcohol consumption sent many bars underground.

Nowadays, there's no shortage of spirits on sale here. The bar stocks an incredible selection of bourbon, scotch, and whiskey, including Canadian whiskey.

The founder's original goal was to create a traditional jazz cabaret, but the venue has grown to become so much more. Its stage has been graced by some of the best comedy, blues, hip-hop, and jazz acts.

BarBootlegger is also well-known as one of the best cocktail bars in Montreal. While you're here, be sure to sample one of Mixologist Frederick’s creations. As you sip at your drink, you'll feel like you've traveled back to the roaring twenties.

Old Montreal

With its European-inspired architecture, Old Montreal is a favorite among locals and visitors. It’s also home to some fantastic Montreal jazz clubs.

7. Jardin Nelson

Jardin Nelson is an oasis of relaxation located in the heart of Old Montreal's historic district. From May to Thanksgiving, enjoy the sun, sangria, and the sounds of the city, including live musical acts, every midday and evening.

This jazz club is the ideal place to spend a summer evening, although you should note that it closes down in winter. Jardin Nelson doesn't take reservations, so be sure to get there early. It opens at 11:30 a.m. on weekdays and 11 a.m. on weekends and public holidays. The bar is just a 5-minute walk from Nelson Gardens, so you can work up an appetite while strolling in beautiful surroundings.

The menu here showcases the best of Quebec cuisine. You’ll find all your favorites, from pizza to tacos. All dishes are made using eco-friendly ingredients where possible, including locally sourced maple syrup in the desserts and vinaigrettes. There are options for everyone, including those on gluten-free diets.

Quartier des Spectacles

The Quartier des Spectacles is at the heart of the annual jazz festival, but the neighborhood's jazz clubs feature excellent music all year round.

8. Le Balcon

Le Balcon invites you for dinner and a show. Enjoy a delicious set menu — vegetarian and gluten-free options are available — alongside performances by talented jazz, Motown, soul, or gospel acts.

There’s even a gospel brunch for those who would rather keep their evenings free for other things, like seeing one of our shows. Choose the VIP experience for the best seats in the house, a glass of sparkling wine for every person in your group, and an artisanal charcuterie platter to share.

The musical shows at Le Balcon are incredible, and the food is pretty special. We can’t get enough of the herb-roasted potatoes, and we’re in love with the homemade fig jam accompanying the cheese course. Finishing off the meal with an alcoholic coffee puts us in the perfect mood to enjoy the rest of the evening.

Mile End

Mile End has been known for decades as one of the most artistic neighborhoods in Montreal, home to musicians, writers, filmmakers, and other creatives. In addition to art galleries and boutiques, you’ll also find venues offering live jazz performances.

9. Bar Datcha

Bar Datcha is one of the hottest local bars and nightclubs. It features a large outdoor patio that's available for use from May to October. Locals come to Bar Datcha on the weekend to dance and have fun. The cocktails keep the party buzzing while DJs spin tracks that fill the dance floor all night long.

It’s closed on Mondays and Tuesdays, but on the other days of the week, you can have fun with your friends until 3 a.m. Check the website for information about the jazz nights at this much-loved party venue.

Outside Montreal

Quebec’s jazz scene isn’t limited to Montreal. Many other fabulous jazz clubs and bars are also located outside the city.

10. House of Jazz Laval

If you don’t mind venturing out of Montreal, House of Jazz Laval is worth visiting. Located just 20 kilometres (12 miles) from the downtown core, this jazz bar is known for delicious food, the liveliest of live music, and great times. We've shared so many special times at this venue; it always pulls out all the stops to put on an exciting show.

The menu is full of delicious cuts of meat and seafood dishes. Take a bite of the bison burger while you tap your foot to the beat of live music. The performers put on an incredible show and interact with the crowd to ensure everyone has a good time.

The friendly staff completes the experience, waiting on guests to ensure they have everything they need for a fabulous evening. If you love spectacular shows, the first thing you should do is book tickets to see us — the second is to visit the House of Jazz Laval for a fun-filled evening!

Exploring Montreal's Jazz Harmony: A Journey Through the City's Melodic Heart

As performers who thrive on the thrill of wowing a live audience, we're delighted to have taken you on this tour of the best jazz bars in Montreal. Just like the music you hear at these venues, our shows in Montreal evoke strong emotions.

Join us in our dazzling theater for a spectacular performance full of music, dance, acrobatics, and more. We'll sweep you away on a journey beyond your everyday life, pulling at your heartstrings like a jazz melody.

We promise to spark your curiosity and ignite your imagination. Book your tickets today, mark the calendar, and start counting down to the experience of a lifetime!

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