Think of Corsica, and you think of white sandy beaches, clear blue sea, wild pigs, treacherous roads, and bandits. Look at a local girl the wrong way and you’ll end up with a Godfather style horses head on your pillow. Do it again and it’ll be your own head that goes.
Provence is full of Corsicans. Perhaps they are all fleeing Vendettas. Look at a local girl the wrong way in Provence, and you’ll find your car without wheels in the morning. It’s a gentler place. Child’s play when compared with the consequences of a flirtatious glance on the streets of Bastia.
Which brings us to La Mome restaurant. Mome is slang for a kid and the place bills itself as a Provence/Corsican hybrid. In culinary terms, even after having enjoyed a meal in the restaurant, I have no idea what this means. The only dish that stays consistently on the menu is a burger, which is billed as epic, and comes with fried egg and bacon and aspirations to the biggest burger in town. This is more NYC than Aix-en-Provence.
What definitely is Corsican though, is the sense of pride. And there is plenty to be proud of, from the location in an idyllic hidden square, to the staff, who describe every dish with loving detail, to the cooking based on only the very freshest ingredients. Burger aside the menu is original an interesting highlights include pasta pillows stuffed with courgettes in a creamy lemon sauce, stuffed peppers and tomatoes served with wild Camargue rice.
The clientele is a mixture of Aix office workers and tourists happy to have stumbled on the place. Next to us a couple of businessmen discussed their choice of restaurant:
‘I’ve been here before, you’re in for a treat’
‘I know, my sister can’t stop talking about the place.’
With the choice of hundreds of restaurants in Aix, and their working life to explore them, such opinions are worth listening to. Every detail in the restaurant seems to have been thought through. On hot days guests are greeted with a non-alcoholic citronnade – a choice between strawberry/basil and strawberry/mint. Fresh and clean it’s the prefect palate cleanser. Prices are about average for Aix these days – just short of €20 for a main course. There’s no cheap three course menu to pull in the punters, which is unusual, and implies the restaurant can stand on its own two feet.
There’s also a cute young waitress. One piece of advice though, keep your eyes to yourself. The owners really are Corsican.