At the heart of the legendary Hotel Le Byblos in Saint-Tropez, the Arcadia restaurant revives Mediterranean and Provençal traditions, combining modernity and sophistication. The discreet and talented chef Nikola Canuti is in charge of the kitchen.
Eduard Amuel is a food critic
Stepping into the Byblos Hotel in the heart of Saint-Tropez is always a unique moment. A suspended moment that borders on the unreal and where time seems to have stopped. Years pass, fashions change, and Byblos continues to stand proudly on its hill overlooking the Place des Lices.
Like a historical reference for almost 60 years, the establishment has evolved with the times, inconspicuously and with this elegance and these palatial codes, subtly interwoven with the typical Saint-Tropez touch of madness and casualness.
At the edge of the legendary pool is the Arcadia restaurant, which is a hymn to Provençal and Mediterranean culinary culture. Thanks to the impressive gastronomic culture of Chef Nicola Canuti, let’s discover a tribute to the regional cuisine in a modern interpretation.
White tablecloth, tableware designed especially for the establishment by ceramist Agnes Sandal, the Arcadia restaurant strives to be discreet, refined and in harmony with the hotel environment.
Chef Nikola Kanut, with an impressive resume, put his kitchen knives on Varan soil last year. Toke, draped over his head in a pristine white apron, his chef-like build suggestive of the long dresses and high heels that trickle down to the nearby bar. But this chef, who previously worked with Alain Ducasse, Roger Verger and who traveled the world of kitchens from London to Manila via Monaco, goes out into the dining room without complex to welcome guests to the table.
With the hotel’s own vegetable garden where tomatoes, beans and zucchini are grown alongside Provencal herbs, the menu begins its story by highlighting small stuffed vegetables. As emblematic of Provençal gastronomy as artichokes with barigoule or pistachio soup, this appetizer perfectly combines greed and tradition. Original flavors are present here, whether reinterpreted with goat cheese and red pepper balls, rockfish and anchovy sauce or veal, foie gras and bacon from Colonnata.
A crispy artichoke salad will ruin the day with fried calamari with bottarga, a few slices of pecorino and arugula. Meanwhile, crab salad accompanied by sorrel sorbet on tomato gazpacho leaves is a delicious and refreshing interlude.
The main dish is Mediterranean tuna prepared by Nicola Canuti. The chef took inspiration from the traditional pepper steak to create this marinated version with a pre-mixed chimichurri sauce that covers the pink fish in the heart. A real success!
A true anthem for the south of France, the traditional bouillabaisse returns to its stone fish (capon, cuttlefish, mullet and hauda) paired with barigoule artichokes. For sweet creations, pastry chef Geoffrey Turpin beautifully stokes the fire with a Norwegian omelette with pistachio and strawberry ice cream.
With a room team as rhythmic as a metronome, the Arcadia restaurant has every opportunity to shine like a thousand lights in the gastronomic sky of Saint-Tropez. Nicola Canuti and his team create an honest, friendly and sincere gastronomic appreciation, celebrating the rich and varied cuisine of Provence and the Mediterranean.