When I come to Marseille, it’s always for a few days and I’m on the rush from the minute I land to the minute I take off again. This time wasn’t an exception.
I try to do my best but there are always some people that I can’t see or some things that I can’t do.
The easiest way to see everyone (or almost) is to invite them to my house the same day, together or not.
Everybody knows each other and the atmosphere is always pleasant.
But sometimes, I need some time alone with my best friend Nathalie.
She’s the best of the best. We have been friends forever, which means since she was born (I’m 6 months older). Even if we don’t see each other as we used to do and would like, our connection has never faded and I hope never will.
So, this time, I managed (in my ministry’s diary) to reserve an evening only for the 2 of us.
She suggested me 2 restaurants located near the Cours Julien, the lively, arty and boho area of Marseille. I checked online but one of them didn’t have a website. The comments for both of them were excellent. As I couldn’t decide myself between mediterranean tapas or a more refined mediterranean restaurant, I asked her to book and to make me the surprise. She finally booked the second one, which happened to be in one of the street I prefer.
The restaurant was called “L’Arôme”. It was small and rustic restaurant where booking is highly recommended.
The pre-dinner drinks were very traditional so we both ordered a Kir (I can’t even remember the last time I drank a Kir before!).
Then, we were handed the menu, which was handwritten in a pupil’s notebook.
The choice was limited because the Chef only works with fresh and seasonal products. Most of the time, he offers 3 starters, followed by 2 fish main courses and 2 meat main courses, followed by 2 desserts and a cheese platter.
We both choose the formula with a main course and a dessert.
For the main course, we both ordered a caillette with macaroni pasta au gratin.
A caillette is a traditional dish from South of France (Ardèche), essentially composed of pork meat and green vegetables (chard, spinach, cabbage or even salad)
Normally, I eat it cold as a starter, spread on a slice of bread, like a pâté.
It was the first time that I ate a hot caillette and it was excellent.
For dessert, Nathalie ordered a chocolate moelleux. As I’m not a huge fan of moelleux and the other dessert didn’t please me, I opted for the cheese platter composed of a slice of tomme, a slice of blue cheese and a slice of goat cheese. It was perfectly dressed with pepper, olive oil, fig jam and chives. A delight!
The wait between the courses was just perfect: long enough to allow us to catch up but not to feel forgotten.
The portion didn’t seem big but I can ensure you that we both felt full when we left the restaurant.
We then had a digestive walk in the area, which is the best to see street art in Marseille.
We had a lovely night and spend some quality time together. I hope that we will do it again soon, in Marseille or in London.
TIPS: Don’t even try to park near the Cours Julien, it will drive you crazy. I can’t count the number of time I went there by car, couldn’t find a place to park and had to give up the idea to have dinner in the area. It’s a much better option to take the Métro until Notre Dame Du Mont.
9 rue des Trois Rois
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