My Parisian Restaurant Map

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The bouillabaisse fiasco

Off we went on a little mini-vacation to sample the delicacies of Marseilliean cuisine;
I have to say though, things were not exactly as they seemed.

Firstly, for some reason, I thought that aioli would be served as a side dish to everything. So I kid you not when I say that not one spoonful of aioli entered my stomach the whole weekend. Not one. Actually wait, I take that back. One tiny spoonful did, and it turned out to be the only thing that saved my bouillabaisse, although it was too little too late.

Having arrived in the Vieux Port around 2pm, most places had actually stopped serving lunch. No Dorothy, we are not in Paris any more I'm afraid. But luckily we managed to find one cute little place that would still pour us a couple glasses of pastis, a carafe of rose, and grill up some fish. That, coupled with a sunny day and a sea breeze, was good enough for me.


Then came the bouillabaisse fiasco.

Since of course no foodie in their right mind can come to Marseille and not try it. However most slightly broke foodies like myself cannot afford to pay the atrocious asking price, ranging anywhere between 30 and 60 euros. And that's alot of money for some rock fish. But I found a nice little place where they were serving what appeared to be very yummy looking soup, topped with croutons and fresh aioli (finally!). They even threw in a couple of mussels into the soup, and all that for the comparatively low price of about 16 euros.


The soup was not that great. There was some weird brown goop at the bottom, which I was lovingly assured was the remainder of boiled fish guts and eyeballs. They forget the mussels. And they forgot the only thing that I was really looking forward to: the little croutons with the fresh aioli. Once that finally came, (and of course by that time the soup was cold) it did manage to make things a little bit better. And once they took my plate away, and I casually mentioned that the little bowl designated for my mussel shells was in fact empty, and that no, I had not eaten the mussel shells but that they simply had be omitted from my soup, they gave me a little bowl of mussels, right before the dessert course. The mussels were just steamed, served with a little garnish of leftover steaming water in the bottom of the bowl. Barf.

Surprisingly though, the pizza in Marseilles is quite good. And so is the pastis. And the rose. And the little navettes a la fleur d'oranger. But all the rest I must say was a surprising disappointment.

Armenian Pizza