I happened to be browsing on my phone in Marseille when I came across an article that stated that the Cours Julien was where the young people go in the evenings. I immediately Google mapped it and to my surprise, it was not far at all from our flat, just in the opposite direction to that we’d normally instinctively go. And it turned out that the Cours Julien is a fabulous area – there are boutique shops and lots of restaurants and a big communal square and a playground. It’s a lovely place to be. We wandered around for a bit but immediately knew when we stopped in front of Le Resto Provençal that this was where we wished to dine.
And yes, their menu was full of Provençal specialities. In addition to their a la carte menu, they had two set menus and we opted to choose from their slightly cheaper one of €18,50 for three courses. There was already so much choice on that menu and there’s even more with their €24 set menu.
Blai went for the Petites seiches au basilic, which were served cold on a salad. Refreshing but simple, they were exactly what he desired, proclaimed he.
I, remembering how good the soup was at Chez Fonfon, opted for the Soupe de poissons, which was listed as a house specialty.
Oh glorious, glorious fish soup with your crunchy croutons, spicy garlicky rouille and shreds of gruyere waiting to melt on top of it all. And if the rouille wasn’t garlicky enough for you, a garlic clove was also provided to rub on the croutons. It was utterly delicious.
It was just after we finished our starters when the heavens opened and it started pouring. Proper buckets with lightning and thunder and everything. People who had been sitting outside all somehow managed to squeeze inside… and it was a tight squeeze! Luckily, by the time we finished our meal, the rained had slowed down but we did have to wait it out for a bit.
All the better weather for us to dive head first into our comforting main course – Alouettes sans tête, served with pasta. These long-braised stuffed rolls of beef were fabulous – full of garlic, parsley, pine nuts and bacon. They were cooked to falling-apart tenderness and were incredibly moreish and comforting. Oh wait, I said that already…but it’s true. So so so comforting.
Desserts were simple but perfect endings to the meal. We split a Petit flan de romarin…
… and a Salade de fruits frais.
I never would have thought of incorporating rosemary into a dessert but it did work! And the fruit salad was a proper one full of ripe fruits. Ripe fruits.
It was a shame they close on Sundays (most of the restaurants on the Cours Julien do) as we were hoping to repeat this meal!
Le Resto Provençal
64 Cours Julien