The glorious Cote d’Azur has long been a regular fixture on my holiday destination list. I’ve compiled some of the highlights – discovering a gluten free haven in Antibes, al fresco dining in the hillside village of Mougins and raiding the supermarkets of Nice to find the best gluten free treats on offer. See my other Cote d’Azur post for even more suggestions and beach tips on the road from Nice to Monaco.
Antibes is one of my favourite places. Situated by the sea, this artistic town is full of interesting backstreets and cafes to be explored, squares where you can kick back for a chilled glass of rose wine and beaches for whiling away those summer afternoons.
We happened to be in Antibes on my birthday, so I decided a trip to Choopy’s for lunch and cupcakes was essential and that I needed to drag all 9 of my (non-coeliac) holiday friends along with me! They have a huge range of gluten free items and a coeliac on staff, hence a good knowledge of how to take extra care to avoid cross-contamination.
Even the non-gluten free contingent were impressed but the range of fancy cupcakes, kinder-bar cookies and other delights on sale in Choopy’s. We stayed for lunch and tried their gluten free wraps (they use Schar products) and sandwiches, as well as their moorish nutella-topped gluten free pancakes. Definitely worth a visit if you are a coeliac in Antibes.
Being absolutely stuffed after the wrap and pancake party, we bought some cupcakes to eat around the pool later that evening. I opted for lemon meringue (pictured below with the daisy on top) and a rhubarb-filled cupcake. Both were delightful!
We had a glorious villa in the hillside above Nice, in the picture-perfect village of Mougins. More on eating gluten free in the village shortly, first let me reassure you about how easy it is to find gluten free products in French supermarkets.
We trooped off to do our shopping for a number of meals at a large Carrefour supermarket close to Mougins and there was a large range of gluten free products available. I bought some Schar gluten free baguettes to go with the amazing range of fresh food available – beautiful mackerel fillets, prawns, salad and fruit. You will find other gluten free lunch choices such a ready-made tortilla and my favourite French celeriac and carrot remoulade (double check the dressing ingredients) readily available too.
We also found my top French gluten free sweets – Carambars, mmmmm!
Now a quick look at the gluten free options available in Mougins restaurant scene.
We whiled away a wonderful evening drinking wine and eating platters of meat and cheese at La Cave des Mougins, at the edge of the village. I explained that I was coeliac (I speak French, if you don’t take a French language coeliac card from Celiac Travel and that will explain your needs nicely) and they helpfully served the bread separately so I could tuck into the antipasti treats.
I had brought some Angelic Rosemary & Sea Salt gluten free crackers along with me (love them, highly recommended) to top up my carb allocation, and the restaurant was fine with this.
We also ate at La Gaudinade in the centre of the village. There were quite a few options I could have, and the owners understood what coeliac meant and were very helpful at talking me through my choices. I had the duck breast with potatoes and ratatouille. It seems this restaurant’s approach to gluten free (i.e. very helpful) is typical of many of the other restaurants in Mougins, from what I have read on Google.
Fantastically fresh mozzarella and tomato salad in Nice:
Wallowing in the waters of Villefrance-sur-Mer and scoffing fantastic gluten free icecream from the shop at the back of the beach front:
And this trip’s Hall of Gluten Free Shame award goes to Nice Cote d’Azur airport for having ZERO decent gluten free options. Crisps and wine were my dinner that day…could be worse I guess ;).