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May 31, 2007 02:27 PM

Nice, France - Best patisserie, boulangerie, farmer's market?

My husband and I are spending 2 weeks in Nice this summer and we wanted to line up some great places to check out before we go, so please let us know if you think there are any places that we must try while we are there. We are going to be staying seaside near the Promenade des Anglais.


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  1. I highly recommend La Merenda, a tiny little restaurant in Nice. It's a little gem that could only exist in France. The tables are jammed together and you and the other 20 or so patrons have to sit on little stools. There is no printed menu, only a blackboard listing the choices for that day. You can't call for reservations because they don't have a phone. (You can walk by and make a reservation in person.) You can't pay by credit card because they take only cash.

    But that's all part of the atmosphere. The food is wonderful. Last time I was there we had an aioli, which is a platter of simply cooked fish and veggies served with a very garlicky saffron mayo. Then we had a perfectly ripe, runny cheese that came wrapped in leaves. When you opened the leaves, the creamy goodness ran out, to be scooped onto fresh bread. Dessert was fresh figs, barely warm, with a creamy sauce.

    Dinner is around 40Euros/person. The restaurant is only open during the week.
    You'll be staying nearby. La Merenda's address is 4 rue Raoul Bosio (if you have an old map, this street might be called rue de la Terrasse)

    1. imho, not to be missed in Nice:
      La Merenda, as described above.
      Confiserie Henri Auer near La Merenda in Old Town. delicious pastry. but more, the glacéed fruit and the homemade preserves (confitures). also, the ""old world" charm of the place.
      N. Alziari olive and olive oil store. yes, you can get the oil here for an egregious price, but the store is charming, and you can taste the olives before you buy.
      Bar René Socca is a sort of stand in the Old Town where they make the traditional chick pea crepes and pizza. The socca is delicious, and the ambiance at the stand is pure Niçoise.
      L'Ane Rouge is a restaurant on the harbor below Old Town that specializes in Bourride, the "other" Provençal fish soup. Be sure to order a bottle of white Bellet, a wine only found in Nice, and perfect with the Bourride.
      Strolling Old Town, you will find a plethora of wonderful shops featuring various foodstuffs. It's not hard to make a lunch out of the pissaladière, socca, ice creams etc. you will encounter in your walk. Don't forget your camera. The colors are breathtaking.
      I know Roger Verge has sold his restaurants near Nice, but he may still have his cooking school in town. If it's still there, you can spend a pleasant morning there in class and get to eat the results for lunch.

      Then, easy day trips from Nice include St. Paul de Vence. Do not miss the Fondation Maegt, an incredible private Modern Art museum, as well as La Colombe d'Or... food is only so-so, but the restaurant is famous for the paintings and drawings on the wall by Picasso, Cezanne, Chagall, Matisse and the like, who exchanged art for meals there. You can't see the art without eating there.
      Vence, above St. Paul, has Matisse's Rosary Chapel, and Cagnes-sur-Mer has Renoir's house.

      1. Cocktails at Negresco.

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