Provence Côte d’Azur Dining

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Leading the way among soign and refined cuisine moderne dining rooms is this delicious restaurant. You'll have to dig deep in your memory book to remember such scrumptious creations: Portobello mushrooms are given a newer-than-now nouvelle spin, salmon is a dazzling fusion of Provence and Asia, and desserts are picture-perfect. $$$-$$$$ Aix-en-Provence

La Bastide de Moustiers
Gourmands the world over flock to this evocative 17th-century country house transformed by Alain Ducasse into a luxury country retreat. Ducasse prot g Vincent Maillard plans multicourse menus daily according to nature's local abundance. You can't go wrong with stuffed rabbit and spring vegetables. $$$$ Moustiers-Ste-Marie

Cafe-Brasserie Les Deux Garcons
Swells have crowded the tables here since 1792, everyone from Churchill to Zola to Picasso and Sartre. The food is only so so, but that's not why you're here. Come for the linen-decked sidewalk tables looking out to the Cours Mirabeau, the fresh flowers, the crack waitstaff, and the gilt-edged, espresso-filled cup at the end of the meal. $$ Aix-en-Provence

Christian Etienne
Eating here is something like a religious experience, not just because you're dining in a 12th-century building next to the Pope's Palace, but because Christian Etienne is one of France's greatest chefs. Seven-course meals typically include superbly prepared meats and fishes along with something extravagant (foie gras with tomato petals) and something delectably simple (tomato tartare). $$$$ Avignon

Hôtel Le Cagnard
One of the great attractions at this hotel is the esteemed restaurant, helmed by Jean-Yves Johany. Swoon over foie gras cooked with figs, peaches, and apricots, and swoon again over the delicious rouget served with spring rolls. You will ascend to heaven if you order the black truffle lasagna. Leave room for dessert---the caramelized apple is stunning. $$$-$$$$ Haut-des-Cagnes

Le Feu Follet
Chef Jean-Paul Battaglia heads up a battalion of young chefs in the busy kitchen here, which turns out ambitious delicacies like foie gras and hand-smoked salmon. The desserts are exquisietly refined. $$-$$$$ Mougins

Le Louis XV
This extravagantly showy restaurant stuns with neo-Baroque details, yet it manages to be upstaged by its product: the superb cuisine of Alain Ducasse. Iced lobster consomm with caviar, risotto perfumed with Alba white truffles, sole saut ed with tender baby fennel---in short, a panoply of delights. $$$$ Monaco

Les Deux Fr res
Oozing with charm, this whitewashed, 19th-century schoolhouse has been transformed into an inn overlooking the sea. The restaurant prepares ambitious and generous fare, including homemade terrines, herbed lamb, and good cheese and pastries. $$ Roquebrune-Cap-Martin

Food lovers treasure this Suquet address. Find out for yourself with one of the seasonal prix fixe menus, which draw on the finest Mediterranean produce to deliver such simple yet delicious dishes as pan-fried John Dory, asparagus risotto, and crepes suzette. $$-$$$ Cannes

Table d'Amis-Jacques Maximin
Sample exquisitely prepared, unpretentiously priced, country cooking---shellfish soup with crayfish ravioli, white beans in rich squid ink, Mediterranean fish grilled in rock salt and olive oil, and candied-eggplant sorbet, among other pleasures. Plenty of light pours into the airy and uncluttered dining room through delicate, safron curtains. $$$$ Vence

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