Monday, June 20, 2022

Carmela Restaurant in Vieux Nice

An Italian food lover's delight.

Situated at the end of the Cours Saleya in Vieux Nice (3 Place Charles Felix, 06300 Nice France), just steps away from the building where the artist Matisse once lived and worked and literally one minute from the beach is Carmela. A fabulous Italian restaurant that must be experienced on your next visit to Nice.

Now, in no way would I consider myself a foodie. But I do know what I like and it’s rare I write about a restaurant unless I love it and I think other people should know about it so that they can discover the establishment.

As anyone who knows the area, the Cours Saleya in historic Vieux Nice is filled with a variety of restaurant choices, each offering its take on food and cultures in general. There are so many places to choose from that it can be confusing as to where to go so that you are not in yet another tourist trap.

The Carmela restaurant stands out on its own, not in a pretentious way, just confident enough in knowing that the quality and service they provide will speak for itself and it certainly does, every time.

Since we are part of an international travel destination, a region where one has so many choices when it comes to pretty much everything, the general rule of thumb is, that when you get a recommendation by a local, you take note. 

My first visit to Carmela was on the recommendation of one of my business partners, where, easily and without reservations, we were quickly seated on the outdoor terrace during the height of the lunch hour and taken care of by the waiters as though we were family. 

The menu was filled with an amazing array of choices (yet not too many leaving one confused). In the end, we both opted for the plat du jour which was beef tagliata, and roasted potatoes, all lightly enhanced with not only their juices but a delicate, tasty sauce, and included a side salad, which we paired, oddly, with mojitos but it worked. 

On another visit, with another business partner, we were accommodated quickly and had the choice of sitting on the terrace with the buzz of everyone enjoying their meal or sitting inside. Since we had some business to discuss, we went to a more quiet corner inside the beautifully designed restaurant so that we could both eat and discuss a work project. 

My associate loved her enticing fish plate and grilled vegetables and I had Tagliatelle al Rag├╣ di Manzo which tasted out of this world and very filling, and although I felt fully satisfied afterward, my first thoughts were that I couldn’t wait to have this meal again with its homemade flair. 

It should be noted, that again, we had the most wonderful, attentive service, by some of the best-looking staff around, who are friendly, speak various languages and with not a hint of attitude in the least. 

Time and again I find myself going back to this restaurant. The food, drinks, and service at Carmela are divine. It would just take too long to describe every meal and experience I have had there with others but I already feel like the place has become a favorite that cannot recommend it enough, and at very reasonable prices as well. This means, that if you are a visitor, you won’t feel taken advantage of, instead, you will be made to feel most welcome. 

At Carmela, a balance can be found between the sometimes bustling location that captures the energy of the nearby crowds yet has a separateness that makes for a better dining experience. Here, you can relax or entertain with family and friends while seemingly watching the world go by while deciding on an array of freshly made Italian food choices that are most memorable. 

As a local, I highly recommend, Carmela.

Photos credit: Carmela Restaurant

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