People often ask me where to eat in Nice, France. They want to eat gluten-free and organic —at cheap prices. GF and organic are not cheap – anywhere – that I know of these days. So enjoy good eating…just don’t look at the prices.
Unfortunately, there is way too much pasta and pizza in Nice – playing to tourists.
If you are not renting a holiday home, where you can cook your own food, dining out can be difficult — I know first-hand. Most of my meals are cooked at home. I shop very carefully and enjoy the many boucherie shops in Old Town Nice, along with open-air veggie markets. Thanks to French farmers who are stepping up organic production, vegetables in France are GMO free (prohibited cultivation) and that is a plus.
Last week we were with longtime friends from the States that wanted real French food. They had just spent two weeks in Italy. That can be an arduous task for the infrequent visitor because of all the Italian fare in Nice. The South of France is not Paris; it is home to Mediterranean food that is partial to Italian roots – Nice once belonged to Italy. Fortunately, I knew where we all could have a wonderful lunch.
Le Petit Lascaris
Just down the street from the lavish 17thcentury Palais Lascaris in Old Town Nice, (vieille ville) is a tiny restaurant, Le Petit Lascaris, (5, rue Droite ) The ambiance runs from ancient to modern utilitarian; mismatched plates, and jam jar water glasses.
Of all the implements, culinary tools, and artifacts that surrounded us, the huge, heavy brass pepper mill on our table was surprisingly still available for our use.
Our friend was demonstrating the pepper mill.
My preference in a restaurant…
…is a table perpendicular to the side walls so we have a view of the entire restaurant, not with my back to the wall, although at times, it is unavoidable, and my husband is willing to be the wall flower! We arrived early and it was great to have a choice. Since there is no designated patio with a view, inside activity is another factor for me.
…someone has to fold the linen!
I don’t think I have seen a smaller kitchen, have you?
We all were in a festive mood which brought us to hilarity at the attempt of translation on the chalked English menu. See if you can find it! All of us agreed we found simple and fresh food at this cozy vintage restaurant. The best thing for me was that there are no food restrictions here, and most of the meals on the menu are gluten-free.
beans with smoked duck… very tasty, especially the duck.
Leeks with vinaigrette and emmental cheese
Fillet de sardines, marinated with lemon, ginger and fennel salad
Lunch – Tartare de Boeuf
Blanquette de Veau was satisfying with some rice underneath the stew… soaking up the broth.
Sautéed poultry, chorizo, tomato sauce with green olives.
Mousse au Chocolat.
Sorry…we ate the mousse too fast for a photo!
This was the best meal I have had in a long time in Nice. I know what I will be making next week – Blanquette de veau. From what I hear, if Le Petit Lascaris is full, head next door to Palmyre where one can have an equally good meal.
TIP: Prior to your departure (to any city) it would be good to check out the food scene. Nice does have many alternative eateries such as vegetarian, bio (organic), and GF – they are all here. Bon appétit!