We recently had a delightful lunch at Le Nautic Restaurant, located in Menton, close to the French and Italian borders. The day was sunny and warm, with a gentle breeze coming off the Mediterranean, so we ate at one of the tables situated outdoors. We arrived a little late for lunch, at 2 p.m., so the wait staff wasn't too thrilled to see us. Nevertheless they provided attentive, professional service throughout our meal.
The menu included an interesting combination of French and Italian seafood based recipes. Since I reside in Italy, I was looking for something French. I started with a half dozen raw oysters that were served on a bed of crushed ice, accompanied by brown bread slices and vinaigrette on the side. I tend not to mask the wonderful flavors of the sea with hot sauces or other toppings, adding just a sprinkle of lemon juice before letting the shucked oysters slide out of their "homes" into my mouth. They were indeed tasty and a treat for me.
I was in the mood for Bouillabaisse, one of the specialties at Le Nautic, however it seemed to be greatly over-priced and only available for two people. I ended up ordering a Seafood Stew that featured a variety of shrimp, langoustines, mussels, clams, fish fillets and squid. The portion size was generous and the broth was excellent. Toasted slices of baguette came in handy for dunking. Beware, this dish can be a disaster on white shirts, so do cover yourself with an extra napkin.
My guests each made selections from a fixed menu comprised of a starter, an entree and a dessert. The crab salad was popular, as were the stuffed baked mussels prepared with basil and breadcrumbs. The shrimp topped with a curry sauce and a side of rice was not very good.
Most of the items on Le Nautic's menu were quite pricey, but there is something for everyone's price range. Our meal, plus a bottle of Muscadet, totaled 122 euros. I would return here the next time I visit Menton.