The sun-drenched city of Montpellier lies a mere 15km from the Mediterranean, so it’s no wonder that seafood very much rules the menu at a lot of the restaurants. Whether you’re after a plate of oysters and a glass of wine – South of France-style – for lunch, or a full seafood platter for an evening meal, you’ll be spoilt for choice.
Head to La Tasca in the modernist Antigone district in Montpellier for some great seafood dishes. This restaurant is slightly off the tourist track so you’ll be dining in a more local atmosphere, with a large terrace setting overlooking the River Lez and the glimmering regional council headquarters building. On Wednesday evening, a seafood buffet with a glass of wine is on offer for €34, or else the normal menu has every seafood you require, from prawns to crab to catch of the day.
For central sushi in Montpellier, head to Côté Sushi. There’s the full range of Japanese dishes you’d expect to see with the added pleasure of dining under sunshine for about 10 months of the year. The sharing box is a good choice is you’re dining in a group and they also offer a takeaway service if you’d rather have a night in tucking into your sushi.
L’écailler des Beaux Arts is situated in the sought-after neighbourhood of Beaux Arts in Montpellier, just a short walk from the city’s botanical garden. The restaurant itself is a real find; small and stylish with great seafood. Eat among locals here, away from the main tourist hotspots, and enjoy some really tasty seafood dishes – all with a Mediterranean twist.
Fish and chips is always a good option, especially if you’re exploring France for a while and have maxed out on baguette and cheese. Good fish and chips are not always a given in France, however, which makes Fish and ship such a delight. Mushy peas are even on the menu, as well as twists on the traditional cod and chips with sweet potato fries and so on. Happily, also for those seeking a taste of home, Fish and ship serves an all-you-can-eat full English breakfast at the weekends.
A sweet restaurant in Montpellier’s old town. Chez Toto is just the kind of eatery you want on holiday; easy to navigate to from the main hotspots but a bit away from the crowds to allow for the local flavour of the night to shine. Decked out with fairy lights and parasols, tuck into a small but perfectly formed seafood menu from oyster platters to seafood pasta dishes. This is dining South of France-style and it’s never felt better.
A gorgeous restaurant to the south of Montpellier on the coast. L’Artimon is perfect for seafood lovers and provides a welcome pause from city exploring for a lunch or dinner. Everything is on the menu here, from fish soups of the day and oyster and lobster platters, to shellfish, white fish and of course, the daily catch. The restaurant overlooks the sea, with tables set out on balconies, and the decor is minimalist and stylish.