Marseille is an exciting food city, thanks to a dining scene that is as diverse as its citizens. Choose from Michelin-star tables, young bistronomy-driven chefs and heritage haunts that have been making couscous and pizzas for more than half a century. With so much on the menu, the best restaurants in Marseille are bound to keep you coming back for more.
Best Restaurants In Marseille
1. Le Petit Nice Passedat
Chef Gérald Passedat’s family founded this hotel-restaurant on a craggy stone point sticking out into the Mediterranean in 1917, and since he took over in 1985, he’s made it into one of the world’s best seafood restaurants. The dining room with white tablecloths has sweeping views over the sea, and the menu changes according to what the fishermen bring in every day. Passedat’s minimalist cooking style showcases the fresh fish and shellfish in dishes like carpaccio of sea bream with caviar and bottarga, sea anemone beignets with seaweed sauce, and sea bass in an herb bouillon with chopped tomatoes.
2. Les Bords De Mer
The menu at this stylish restaurant with spectacular views over the Mediterranean in a renovated art deco hotel is the work of chefs Tatiana and Katia Levha, the sisters behind Le Servan, one of the best modern bistros in Paris. They prioritize local seasonal produce to create inventive southern French dishes like ravioli filled with sauteed Cevennes onions with saffron butter, lemon, and sage; grilled duck breast with carrots in a sweet-and-sour sauce; and a financier with citrus, clementine sorbet, and pepper.
3. Douceur Piquante
In her tiny restaurant with midcentury furniture in Le Panier, one of the oldest neighborhoods in Marseille, chef Nadjat Bacar cooks dishes from her native Comoros Islands, a French overseas territory in the Mozambique Channel between Mozambique and Madagascar. The chalkboard menu changes daily according to the fresh catch and whatever local, mostly organic produce is in season. Dishes like paella de Zanzibar, fish with spiced rice; spelt risotto with cep mushrooms, lentils, and carrots; and chocolate cake with Espelette pepper show off her style. There are a variety of original vegetarian and Vegan recipes as well, but repeat customers go for the veal meatballs in spicy tomato sauce with coconut shavings.
This gourmet restaurant on the very edge of Marseille’s Old Port is as famous for its delicious Michelin-star awarded dishes as it is for its incredible panoramic views over the Mediterranean. The exquisitely designed, nouvelle cuisine-inspired dishes are crafted with only the finest ingredients by top chefs. They are best enjoyed alongside one of the many complementary wines from l’Épuisette’s extensive selection. Try to sit by the window for the best views. Take in the Old Port on one side and the Mediterranean on the other.
5. Restaurant Chez Michel
This Marseille institution is one of the best restaurants in Marseille which always draws a crowd thanks to its great location, warm and friendly welcome and the sumptuous gourmet dishes. Restaurant Chez Michel’s decor is simple but effective. The quality of the meals speak for themselves. The local dishes in particular, including Chez Michel’s bourride, a seafood dish which originated in the Provence and Languedoc regions of France, warrant the (sometimes high) price tag. The warm welcome by the always-friendly owner is the icing on top of the cake.
Tucked away in Le Panier not far from Marseille’s striking Mucem, or museum of Mediterranean cultures, Scottish chef Malcolm Gardner serves up a daily chalkboard menu from the open kitchen overlooking his easygoing restaurant. Gardner, who grew up in a Scottish fishing village and followed a girlfriend to Marseille, is a shrewdly creative chef whose inventive cooking never overpowers the natural flavors of the impeccably fresh fish and shellfish he cooks with. Expect dishes like sea bream carpaccio with mango, avocado, and ginger; monkfish-filled cappelletti with pork sauce, Chinese cabbage, and chanterelles; and grilled turbot with smoked celeriac and veal stock.
7. AM par Alexandre Mazzia
No other meal in Marseille – or elsewhere for that matter – compares to one at AM. Ingenious chef Alexandre Mazzia takes guests on a journey between his two home continents – Africa and Europe. Using the best-quality provençal produce and Mediterranean fish, the former basketball star plays with spice, smoke and creative flavour combinations such as eel and chocolate. His fantastic creations have just earned him a second Michelin star. Without menus, diners are free to discover and delight in each bite. Choose from a seat at the kitchen counter, in the concrete-and-wood dining room or at the new table for two in the heart of the kitchen: the ultimate dinner theatre.
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