Film Scouts Diaries

1996 Cannes Film Festival Diaries
Dīner ("dee-nay", not "dye-nurr") #1: L'Oasis

by Jim Byerley

Cannes, May 8th, 1996

Got a friend at the Arab Bank? A suitcase full of francs? A business associate with a healthy expense account? Make your way quickly to L'Oasis in nearby La Napoule. A five minute cab ride along la mer brings you to a restaurant of refinement and serenity, far from the hustle, push & shove of Cannes. No one will elbow you while dining at L'Oasis.

The greeting is warm and the entire experience is sans attitude. Our handsome waiter seems to genuinely enjoy our enjoyment of the prix-fixe dinner. It's a hefty FF550, but worth every centime. We start with a tasty fish flavored gelée bathed in a creamy flour sauce served in an egg cup. Then a heavenly salad of asparagus and morel mushrooms in a warm vinaigrette. Spring is here! Next comes sea bream delicately grilled, served over risotto with a tangy sauce of lemon and thyme. It's palate-cleansing time and nothing does the job better than a tangerine sorbet with kirsch. The main course is veal and pan-fried foie gras served piggy-back style with tender sautéed mango on the side. Another small dish of sautéed mushrooms comes complimentary.

The cheese course is a splendid assortment of local products. The waiter warned us about one strong chèvre that did taste something like dirty gym socks. We've all tasted dirty gym socks right? The caravan of desserts follows and we can recommend the dense chocolate cake, the tangy lemon tart, and the crunchy pine nut tart. The plate of petits-fours served with coffee goes untouched, however.

L'Oasis is indeed an oasis of good taste. We'd love to come back when it is warm enough to eat on the gorgeous terrace.

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