Best Restaurants in the south of france

Guide to the Best Restaurants in the South of France

The French Riveria (the Côte d’Azur in French) is one of the most visited regions of France – and for good reason. The sublime landscape is breathtaking and the region is rich in culinary history. Our guide has the best restaurants in the South of France for you to discover – from Marseille to Menton. All the restaurants in this guide have been tried and tested numerous times and are in no particular order.

Chez Etienne

Chez Etienne is a real “where locals eat” type of restaurant in Marseille. A true gem that’s overlooked by a lot of visitors, it’s a genuinely great foodie experience in the city serving up arguably the best pizza in Marseille.

Chez Etienne Anchovy pizza
Anchovy Pizza

Expect to be surrounded by real locals whilst eating incredible anchovy pizza, grilled meat (steak, lamb and veal) all cooked over wood & charcoal giving the food that special BBQ flavour. As you’re in the South, order a pastis or rosé from the Côte de Provence which goes terrifically well with the food.

What to know before you visit

  • They don’t take reservations
  • Expect to queue during weekends
  • Share the pizza plus the grilled meat!
  • They only take cash

Address: 43 Rue Lorette, 13002 Marseille
Tel: 06 16 39 78 73

La Merenda

If you’re looking for genuine, simple, honest Niçoise cuisine, La Merenda is a must visit. Within the tiny, vintage inspired restaurant lies an open kitchen and Dominique Le Stanc – owner and ex. 2 star Michelin chef.

The food served up is traditional Niçoise cuisine that’s steeped in history and changes with the seasons. During peak tomato season expect to eat the most incredible tarte à la tomate. During the spring you’ll see a traditional Pissaladière which is a caramelised onion tart with an anchovy paste and olives – incredible. Mains include traditional saucisses aux lentilles (sausage and lentils) and Daube Provençale (a red wine braised beef dish with panisses).

What to know before you visit

  • You can reserve online via Instagram – click on the ‘reserve’ button on their profile
  • You’ll need to reserve up to 2 weeks in advance during the summer
  • They don’t take cash

Address: 4 Rue Raoul Bosio, 06300 Nice

Table 22

Nestled at the top of a very touristy street in the old part of Cannes lies Table 22 – an excellent modern restaurant serving Provençal cuisine. Headed up by Chef Noel Mantel and an incredibly attentive front of house team, Table 22 is a very good choice for precision, classical French bistro food.

Table 22 cannes lobster
Lobster & Leak Ravioli with Bisque Sauce

Highlights on the menu include a really incredible lobster and leek ravioli covered in a rich foamy lobster bisque. The mains include John Dory (always cooked to perfection) on a bed of seasonal vegetables and a cream/fish stock sauce. Lamb rack and beef fillet are also done incredibly well. Their wine list is equally as good as the food and they have some very good bottles at reasonable prices.

Table 22 cannes john dory
John Dory fillets

What to know before you visit

  • You can reserve online and usually on the day even during peak season

Address: 22 Rue Saint-Antoine, 06400 Cannes
Tel: 04 93 39 13 10

L’Auberge de la Mole

Just off the main road in a quaint small village – La Mole – about 25 minutes from Saint Tropez lies a country side Auberge (French for a small inn) serving incredible French food. The cuisine here focuses on South Western food – duck, pork, foie gras etc.

L'Auberge de la Mole steak
Beef fillet Rossini (with seared foie gras)

L’Auberge de la Mole has two set menu options to choose from: €35 or €70 – and they’re supremely generous. Both include a hors-d’œuvre of amazing charcuterie – including duck liver mousse, pâté de campagne et duck rillettes (oh and served with home made pickles). For mains you can choose from a host of options including omelette aux cèpes, confit duck leg and beef fillet with seared fois gras. For desserts you don’t choose – you get all 3 to share – including an incredible chocolate mousse.

L'auberge de la mole charcuterie
Mixed charcuterie ‘starter’

What to know before you visit

  • They only take cash (and there’s only 1 ATM in the village and is located in a grocery store)
  • Come hungry
  • You’ll most likely need to come via car

Address: 2 Pl. de l’Église, 83310 La Mole
Tel: 04 94 49 57 01

Chez Davia

Chez Davia is a traditional Niçois restaurant first started by the current chef-owner’s (Pierre Altobelli) Grandma in 1953. The restaurant has kept its traditional homely charm with eclectic artwork on the walls and bowls of lemons on the larger tables.

Chez Davia Prawns
Raw Gamberonii from San Remo

The food changes weekly depending on what’s in season on what comes in from their suppliers. Expect Pistou pasta (pistou is a Provençal version of pesto), crispy courgette flowers and raw Gamberoni from San Remo in Italy. The wine list is limited but includes high quality natural wine.

Chez Davia courgette flowers
Crispy courgette flowers

What to know before you visit

  • You can reserve online

Address: 11bis Rue Grimaldi, 06000 Nice
Tel: 04 93 87 91 39

Le Petit Nice Passedat

A temple of fish on the coast line in Marseille, Le Petit Nice Passedat is an exceptional high-end restaurant, very much worthy of its 3 Michelin stars. Focusing on Marseillaise and Provençale cuisine, the restaurant takes you on an odyssey of local, forgotten fish.

Their tasting menus vary in terms of steps and produce – there’s even a menu designed around Bouillabaisse – the city’s famous fish soup dish. The dishes are well thought out, seasonal and are adjusted daily depending on what is caught that very morning. For seafood lovers, it’s an absolute must-do.

What to know before you visit

  • Parking is available in the hotel

Address: 7 Rue des Braves Anse de Maldormé, 156 Cor Président John Fitzgerald Kennedy, 13007 Marseille
Tel: 04 91 59 25 92


Voted to be the “No.1 restaurant in the world” by a well-known guide a few years ago, Mirazur is a unique 3 Michelin star experience focusing on ultra fresh, local ingredients. Owner-chef Mauro Colagreco started Mirazur in Menton (known as the jewel of France), close to the Italian border due to its unique micro climate. The menus are developed closely to what is grown in their own garden and what local farmers and fishermen bring in.

There’s a single tasting menu available priced at €450 for dinner and lunch with various wine pairing options. The food is delicate, organic in nature and lightly seasoned, letting the ingredients do the talking.

What to know before you visit

  • You will realistically need to reserve months in advance – sign up to their newsletter to get notified when certain months open up

Address: 30 Av. Aristide Briand, 06500 Menton
Tel: 04 92 41 86 86

Chez Fonfon

Chez Fonfon is a restaurant dedicated to Bouillabaisse and have been serving the legendary soup since 1952. Located just about the pretty old Port du Vallon des Auffes south of the city centre, the dining room presents stunning views across the the marina.

Chez fonfon bouillabaisse

The food here is all about the Bouillabaisse which comprises of rouille (a saffron, garlic aioli), the 5 different types of fish and of course the master soup itself. There are different Provençal and Marseillaise classics available on the menu including artichokes barigoules, aioli platter and stuffed round courgettes.

What to know before you visit

  • Come hungry!

Address: 140 Rue du Vallon des Auffes, 13007 Marseille
Tel: 04 91 52 14 38

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