To begin, we had stopped by the Restaurant a few days ahead of our dinner and appearances left much to be desired. However, on the night of our reservation, we walked from our accommodations about 1km away and with the doors open and the security panels gone we experienced a completely different impression. We arrived at about 2028 hrs for our 2030 reservation and immediately experienced some problems with a reservation they seemed to have no record of. Since we had requested Bouillabaisse the lack of reservation posed more of a problem since they required 24 hours notice. Then the manager showed me our reservation on his Blackberry, for the night before. OMG. Never have I done such a thing, I think I will blame the Provence Rosé, of which we had tasted many. However, without missing a beat, a gentlemen I took to be one of the owners and perhaps the chef, assured us that he could offer us something very special but not Bouillabaisse. Feeling mortified at my mistake, and having stuck them with a Bouillabaisse the night before I think I was ready to agree to anything, so we agreed to his offer.
Then Chez Aldo began to really show their class and style. The gentleman showed us to a table, not just any table mind you but a table for two right at the window, with a second to none view of the setting sun. They offered a small but completely adequate wine list from which I ordered a bottle of Chateau La Coste Rosé which turned out to compliment the meal that was to come perfectly, The chef/owner who seemed to have made it his mission to ensure our satisfaction seemed to approve wholeheartedly of my selection and it soon arrived. Between the view of the harbour, the ocean, the islands and Marseille, we really didn't notice time very much, however, I would estimate about 30 minutes later (maybe less) a Tureen arrived at our table filled with our “special dish” containing 4 of what I would estimate to be about 250g - 350g shrimp, mussels, fish (firm, white, boneless filets), large scallops and a selection of vegetables
With the crusty baguette slices, spread with the mustard mixture, lining the bottom of our large bowls, We spooned the mixture of soup and seafood into our bowls. The entire meal was wonderful, and with the view of the small harbour and the sun setting over the Mediterranean the setting could not have been better. Or so I thought, when the desert menu arrived my wife was able to order one of her favourite flavours, Cassis, and the glacee that arrived did not disappoint, she went on and on about the flavour and texture, and its comparison to real Blackberries. My nougat glacee was also wonderful although not frozen quite as hard as the one I had at Mere Germane, in Chateauneuf-du-Pape (see my review there)
After finishing our coffee, and making our way to the cashier, the gentleman from before crossed what was now a very full restaurant at 10 with people waiting for tables, shake my hand and again ensure that everything had been to our liking and satisfaction. I held my breath for a moment, not knowing what this special meal the chef had recommended would total, only to find a bill that was 40-50 Euros LESS then a Bouillabaisse would have cost me.
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