Nice – the dreamy French seaside

I have come to Nice so many times with my family but we really never get tired of this place.

The town is intriguing to visit, the seaside and the color of the turquoise sea is absolutely spectacular, you can take a stroll down the promenade and visit the famous Edith Piaf’s favorite hotel Le Negresco, if you come just before Christmas, you can enjoy a glass of champagne or hot wine and the festive markets outside. There is really no perfect time for when to come, as it has its beauty in every season. My interest is food 🙂

For me and my family every visit has always been full of gastronomic pleasures, with wine and olive oil shops on each corner, a beautiful market with local seasonal produce just by the sea, fantastic restaurants – a Mediterranean paradise.

Fresh herbs in enormous bouquets.

It all starts with the Marché aux Fleurs early in the morning, it really is a huge flower market together with local farmers selling their seasonal produce, organic vegetables, mushrooms, the most mouthwatering cheeses and terrines. You can go and have some coffee there first thing in the morning and try their traditional soca (a chickpea flour based baked kind of a pizza, like farinata that you can find in Italy) and some pissaladiere (a focaccia base with caramelized onions and thyme with some olives on top) – finger licking good!

An array of different oysters at the market.

There are various bars and restaurants on the street of the market that put out their big terraces during lunch time, even in winter, perfect for you to enjoy fresh food and some sun.

A new place we just came upon, Da Giulia, in the Justice square serves one of the best pizzas, perfectly baked and fermented, not chewy, with seasonal fresh ingredients, perfect for a light lunch.

Café de Turín.

Our favorite lunch place for the past 10 years and an unmissable spot in Nice however is the historical Café de Turín. You better like sea food, because this is the best place to get fresh oysters, huge crabs, sea urchin, or whatever other sea creature you choose to get your hands dirty with. Be ready to have them dirty up to your elbows, no joke!

A very good local wine choice to go with the food is the restaurant own branded Muscadet – light enough to carry on with the day after the lunch.

Something to get your appetite going.

The old town is also full of small butcheries and fresh homemade pasta shops, so again I stress that it is worth thinking of getting an apartment with a kitchen, if you are a fan of cooking that is. (There are so many beautiful restaurants, don’t worry if you’re not :)).

The butcheries serve the best beef, rabbit, different poultry and if the season is in, some wild game, like pheasant or partridge too.

Little quail for the oven.

Just a few meters from the Café de Turín, there is one of our favorite spice shops Girofle et Cannelle, where you can get anything you can think of. Even the Mauritian vanilla and dried fruit infused rum. Go there to buy some gifts for yourself or people from home, and try some aromatic teas just next door as well.

There are these, as my mum calls them, addictive spices for cooking poultry called Davy Crockett, you should try them, a touch of spicy and sweet. And don’t forget the Himalayan salt with truffle!

Different salts and spices.

As I promised, there are many incredible restaurants where to eat in Nice as well, and you should very strongly consider going to Comptoir du Marché and Le Bistro D’Antoine (both busy places, so be sure to book). There are some nice traditional dishes as blood sausage with caramelized apples, nicely roasted duck breast, beef tartar, and the daily suggestions are quite rich, so everyone will be able to find something they like! The dishes change based on seasonal produce, of course.

A peek at the current menu.
Roasted duck, cooked rare, it was so soft and juicy!
A great wine to pair with the food.

A slightly more fancy and more expensive place where you can also opt for a tasting menu is the Olive & Artichaut, exquisite produce, quite an impressive wine selection.

One more place where you should definitely go is the Cave de Fromager, we came upon it accidentally just last year as we were visiting Nice. Do you like cheese? Because this place (hence the name) has a fantastic selection, we even tried the fondue which was spectacular and an amazing wine selection, natural wines if you are familiar with them! If not, you should try them, you will be surprised!

Dear reader, I hope I have given you the reason to go to Nice very soon, and for those who have already visited it on various occasions, many be you will have found a restaurant to visit in this post! And if you have any more suggestions, unmissable places to see in Nice, don’t hesitate to comment and share!

Thank you for reading 🙂

Buon appetito!

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Graduate in Gastronomic Sciences, Q Arabica Grader, WSET L2 in wine. Obsessed with cooking new recipes, I love visiting producers and travel for food!

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