Cool, calm, collected – and really not laughable at all.
Any French person will see the pun in this restaurant's name. It's called l'Affable and it's in Rue de Lafontaine. Now, the 17th-century Mr De Lafontaine (like the Brothers Grimm) wrote fables. So l'Affable in Rue de Lafontaine is very witty play on words (for 'affable' in French also means affable in English). This is side-splitting stuff. Just a pity, really, that it looks so like 'laughable'. A real pity, because l'Affable is a belting spot.
There’s something vaguely masculine about the place which I like very much. The door off the street (no terrace here) looks like an office door. Inside, the lines are clean and contemporary, with lots of grey, beige and brown. You can see work in the kitchen beyond a big internal window.
You could be in a new-wave Parisian bistro popular with young professionals. But you’re not. You’re in Cannes, in the posh shopping area – and, more to the point, in the hands of Jean-Paul Battaglia.
M. Battaglia ran one of the classier eateries in nearby Mougins for 30 years before moving to this little outpost and giving it a modern make-over. You shouldn’t expect a vast amount of dining space: though cool, l’Affable is pretty warmly-packed.
On the other hand, you should expect some cracking food, mixing Med influences with the occasional Oriental touch (shrimps with Thai rice), the whole given an imaginative twist. With dishes like sea-bream à la plancha, sliced beef with herbs or salmon escalopine, it’s clear that M. Battaglia is an expert captain of his ship.
There are, too, some terrific local wines on the list. If the opportunity arises, do try the Mas de Cadenet rosé. Half-a-bottle of that under the belt and you will indeed be laughing.