With its extensive views of the French Riviera, Calade restaurant on top of the Radisson Blu Nice is truly breathtaking. We were fortunate enough to stay at this beautiful hotel, situated right on the beach with views of the azure Mediterranean sea. Naturally, we had heard about the restaurant at the hotel and thought we would check it out, but it far surpassed our expectations.
Drinks before Dinner
The defining feature of the Calade restaurant and bar is that it has the largest panoramic terrace in Nice (fun fact!). We took full advantage of this by having a bottle of Duval LeRoy priced at 95 euros, but given to us for 75 as we originally wanted the cheaper bottle which was unavailable (+ we got 2 free glasses when the waiter popped the cork a bit enthusiastically and lost a bit of the original champagne). Watching the twinling lights of Nice and the coastal road was every bit as romantic as you would imagine, and felt truly luxurious with soft music playing in the background.
The Main Event
Having really savoured the sunset and champagne, we took a few steps to the restaurant. We were seated outside, with a fantastic view of the lighthouse shining at the end of the bay. The whole restaurant was dimly lit, with sweet little lamps on each one, which highlighted each table enough to see what you were eating, but also made it feel more private.
We chose to do the set menu, costing 49 euros per person, which I have to say was incredible value for what we got. The restaurant is modern European, and the presentation and taste certainly were high-end.
To start, I had the gazpacho with goats’ cheese cream and garlic oil. This dish had all the flavours of the Mediterranean; garlic, olive oil, sweet tomatoes and the slight hint of onion and basil. Off-set by the saltiness of the goats’ cheese and served with warm bread (which is unlimited and comes in an adorable fabric pouch, served with Provencal olive oil), this was a light but savoury dish. Matt had the tuna tartare with lime and coriander, which made the dish almost taste more Mexican than Mediterranean, but was a fantastic palate cleanser nonetheless.
For the main dish, I had seared tuna with avocado cream and artichoke. This dish was subtle in its flavours; the tuna was seared perfectly and wasn’t overshadowed by the lemon notes in the background of the dish. There were cracker shards served alongside, which was a welcome textural addition. Matt had chicken with grilled polenta and Mediterranean vegetables. He said the dish felt almost ‘homely’, but refined. The chicken was tender, the vegetables added an aldente crunch and the polenta was silky smooth. The aforementioned mood lighting, whilst lovely, wasn’t always conducive to quality photos, so forgive me!
To end the meal, because the dishes we had eaten felt so light and delicate, we went big! We both had the molten chocolate fondant with 66% Caraibe Valrhona beans. The cake was deeply rich, almost earthily sweet, but not too cloying, which can sometimes be the case with chocolate fondants. The cream that accompanied it, with a very slight hint of vanilla, sat surprisingly on top of a ball of vanilla ice cream. The combination of hot pudding and cold ice cream is always a winner, and I would argue with anyone who said otherwise! It was so delicious that we forgot to take pictures, but the presentation was not particularly different to a chocolate fondant you have had before.
Washed down with a lovely Provencal Rose at 45 euros, this meal, whilst not cheap, felt like incredibly good value for the quality and presentation of the food, the setting and the service. The hotel was also, whilst very busy at check-in and check-out, incredibly polite and made you feel like you were a valued and important customer, which is always nice when on holiday!
Once again, never sponsored, just an honest review of a lovely evening. Check out the restaurant’s website here, which can also be accessed via the Radisson Blu Nice website.