Côté Marais – Old Nice

April 27, 2007

4 rue du Pontin  04 93 80 95 39 

Closed Monday, no credit cards 

On April 24, 2007, the four of us dined at Côté Marais, a small restaurant in the heart of Old Nice, a ten minute walk from Varian and Gary’s apartment where we had enjoyed our apéritif. There is a three course menu for 28€ with seven to ten choices for the starter, main course and dessert. We ordered the first of two bottles of the M. Chapoutier 2005 St. Joseph Deschauts, which went well with the robust cuisine.  

Varian’s starter was the Petit flan d’aubergine au basilica, compote de tomates à l’Anis, a little round eggplant tart, which she said was very good.
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Left: Linda started with Le Traditionnel Foie Gras de Canard which was very good.

Right: Gary had the Harengs pommes tièdes à l’huile, an overly generous serving of lightly smoked herring on potato rounds with olive oil.

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I started with the Saucisson chaud niçois aux lentilles, a good traditional bistro dish of sausage slices on lentils.

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The other three then went on to the Grenadin de veau à la sauge, gnocchis rissoles au beurre, which turned out to be garnished with some lovely seasonal asparagus. The veal was not as “rosé” as anticipated, but had a good flavor.

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My main course was the Souris d’agneau de Sisteron confit aux fruits secs. This is the less tender, more gelatinous end of a leg of lamb. It is braised for a long time to bring out the meaty flavor. The portion was too large for such an extremely rich dish. The dried fruits went well. I should have ordered it in mid-winter, not on a nice spring evening. The chef told me that he could not make it smaller as that is the size in which the piece comes, but I think it could have been divided after cooking.

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For dessert Linda and Gary had the Crème brûlée à la veritable vanille which was good.

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 Left: Varian had a whole Petit St Marcellin, quelques feuilles de mesclun. She said that the cheese was properly ripe. 

Right: I had the Sorbet poire et son eau de vie, a fresh, light pear sorbet with a glass of clear pear brandy. It cleared my palate after the very rich lamb.

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The restaurant has only 22 seats inside and three outside. One can see back through the little serving area to the small kitchen. Varian said it is normally quiet, but we had a table of nine Dutch vacationers next to us enjoying their meal. The service is rapid and efficient. At 28 € the meal is a bargain for three courses competently prepared and a variety of choices to please any palate.cm8.jpg 

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