A hidden gem on the Rue Xavier Sigalon is definitely worthy of a finding. For sure it is the best restaurant in Nimes – L’Esclafidou Restaurant. It is also one of the best restaurants we have ever had the pleasure of eating in.
We don’t go to fancy (but reasonable) restaurants very often, but when we do, we do love to spoil ourselves with a rich choice of food and delicious wine. But remember, it’s not always about the food but also about the whole atmosphere and about the relationships between staff and customers.
For me going to a welcoming restaurant is probably one of the favourite date nights.
Because this was our only night in Nimes, we had to make the right decision and I am so chuffed I got in touch with Elmarie via Facebook. She ensured me that our reservations were in order and even offered us the first ‘aperitif’ as a bonus welcome gift. 4.5* on TripAdvisor, Certificate of Excellence and a first aperitif offered via Facebook? I was already excited and couldn’t say no!
L’Esclafidou touched all my senses as soon as we walked in. The place looked exactly how I pictured it (okay, TripAdvisor spoiler). The artificial light was in perfect harmony with the soft decorations, red tablecloths and the whole layout of the restaurant was cosy and warm rather than pushy. Hand on heart, I absolutely loved it. I fell in love with the place and I wasn’t even offered a menu yet.
For my first drink, I chose Aperol Spritz while Carl had a beer (so romantic!). I’m not sure if you followed my Instagram stories back in September while I was visiting Italy but I wasn’t a fan of Aperol Spritz. Despite this, I decided to give it another shot here in France. Before we went to a restaurant we stopped of at a local bar where I already had one which changed my mind and enjoyed it. So Italian drinks in a typical French Restaurant, why not!
Neither of us speaks French, so when Elmarie handled us MENU without English translations, we were a little bit confused. It was kind of funny! What will we order now? Shall we play ‘Russian roulette’ and just choose something random? Although Elmarie was busy serving other customers, she soon noticed our struggles and patiently explained to us in English the menu along with recommendations.
We both like same things so is no surprise that we ended up with the same starter and the main dish.
The food was above my expectations. From start to finish the menu was served freshly cooked with the smell of fresh herbs, pasta and meat swimming across the whole restaurant freely like dolphins in the ocean. We had enough (but not too much) time between meals to talk, let the meal settle, please our tummies and to enjoy our drinks. The whole atmosphere in Elmarie’s restaurant was soft, accompanied by typical French music with both Elmarie and the waitress looking after us and other customers politely and with the respect.
And what we did we have for the dinner?
We chose food from the set menu which was 25 euro per person for a 3-course-meal.
We both had for starter the Bobotie de Boeuf en lasagne croustillant which translates to the Mini Beef lasagne served with fresh salad and baguette.
Our main dish was the Tajine de veau aux fruits secs, translating to Veil tagine with dried fruits.
Carl had the Malva pudding for dessert while I had the Moelleux au Chocolat au piment d’espelette et glace sésame noir or in English the Sweet chocolate with Espelette pepper and black sesame ice cream.
…and what did our tummies say?
If you are visiting Nimes, Elmarie’s L’Esclafidou has to be on your list. I can promise you that you won’t be disappointed, the entire menu and the service exceed our expectations. It is a little fancy, extremely cosy and warm hidden gem. Elmarie and her staff really do make you feel homely like.
More about our visit to Nimes, click on this link! 🙂