L'Escalinada

Price guide: Mid-range

22 Rue Pairolière, Nice, 06000

Price guide: Mid-range

L'Escalinada

By Anthony Peregrine, your Nice expert

I write for The Daily Telegraph, The .... Read more
#15 of 20
expert-rated restaurants in Nice
Expert overall rating:4.2 out of 5
Food and drink:
4.2
4.2
Ambience:
4.3
4.3
Service:
4
4.0
Location:
4.4
4.4
Value for money:
4.1
4.1
Recommended for:
Families with teenagers, Singles, People watching, Relaxation

Best for Dining alone - Expert review of L'Escalinada

Classic Niçois dishes amid classic Niçois bustle, though the sheep’s testicles are optional.

Frankly, I find it irresisitible. Dining Niçois-style is not a quiet and contemplative affair. Meals demand exuberance and, crammed into the Old Town, l’Escalinada has been providing it for 50 years. Spilling out into the tiny street, it brings with it the food that Niçois folk have been making a noise about ever since they started eating.

And, if you're by yourself, as I often am, it's a grand way of being part of a party by proxy.

Food and drink: 

You’re in the heart of traditional Nice here, so look out for lots of fish, occasionally of the more challenging sort for UK and US tastes – fresh octopus salads, fried squid and the like. But the menu is long and roams through beef in wine, deep-fried courgette flowers, pastas by the truck-load, stockfish, aîoli and very much else besides.

Including ram’s testicles. (This is one of the few places where you might exclaim: “We’re having a ball!” and be literally correct.) These are, as you may have gathered, not sophisticated dishes. They follow the ways laid down by generations of grandmothers – and when did grandmothers ever get anything wrong?
 

Ambience: 

It’s a tight-packed, and occasionally boisterous, mixture of locals, and tourists who go there because the locals have been going there for decades. If you’re after a romantic tête-à-tête, look elsewhere.

Service: 

Bouncy, confident and friendly, in a welcome-to-our-world sort of way.

Location: 

Bang in the centre of the scurrying Vieux Nice (Old Town), where the Niçois reclaim their city from international influence – and so, ironically, make it particularly attractive to tourists.

Price advice: 

Staple three-course menu is 25 euros. It’s more than ample even for hearty appetites, and pretty good value – the more so that they throw in a kir apéritif at the start.

More information on L'Escalinada:

Price guide:
Mid-range
Type:
Restaurant
Food:
French, Italian, Mediterranean, Traditional
Address:
22 Rue Pairolière, Nice, 06000
Telephone:
04 93 62 11 71
Website:
http://www.escalinada.fr
Serves:
Lunch, Dinner
Opening times:
Mon-Sun 12-2pm, Mon-Fri 7pm-10.30pm. Shut Nov 15-Dec 15.
Accepts Credit Cards:
No
Reservations:
Essential at peak times

Have you been to L'Escalinada? Would you recommended it?