Cannes is known for many things, including its delicious cuisine. Let's not kid ourselves, any holiday to Cannes and the South of France invariably evokes images of enjoying a little aperitif on the terrace, markets offering sun-kissed specialities and excellent restaurants where you can discover mouthwatering dishes.

    When coming to Cannes, you already know that you'll eat well. Southern vegetables grilled to perfection, freshly caught rockfish, colourful summer salads, all that's missing is a drizzle of local olive oil and a small glass of rosé and you have everything you need for the perfect holiday meal, Provençal style. Here is a little glimpse of some of the top 10 Cannes specialities and where to find them.

    1

    Pissaladière

    Pizza with a hint of Provence

    Pissaladière can be easily confused with its Italian cousin. But, if you look closer, you'll see that the traditional tomato sauce is replaced by an onion fondue that has simmered for at least two hours. The topping is often made with pissalat (anchovy cream), anchovy fillets and black olives, not forgetting the herbs that give the pissaladière its unmistakable Provençal identity, such as garlic, oregano, thyme and summer savoury, among others.

    This versatile dish can be eaten cold, warm or straight out of the oven and it's suitable for all times of the day, including a snack, lunch or starter at dinner time. You can find it in all good bakeries.

    2

    Aioli

    Garlic and olive oil, and that's it.

    Aioli is loved throughout the whole of the Mediterranean, and all you need to do to make it is crush cloves of garlic with a mortar and pestle and then gradually add olive oil to make an emulsion. That's what purists would say, at least.

    Nevertheless, you can find more and more recipes using eggs to make the sauce hold, although that tends more towards mayonnaise rather than true aioli, whose name is, actually, just a contraction of the names of its two ingredients in several of the languages spoken across the Mediterranean. Delicious spread on croutons or to enhance your meat, fish and even vegetables, it has a place in every meal. La Sousta serves a great one on Fridays. What are you waiting for?

    Location: 11 Rue du Pré, 06400 Cannes, France

    Open: Daily from 12 pm to 2.30 pm and from 7.30 pm to 10 pm

    Phone: +33 (0)4 93 39 19 18

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    3

    Bouillabaisse

    Putting fish in the spotlight

    Taste a bouillabaisse (fish stew) served by the book during a stay in Cannes. At the most meticulous of establishments, it's eaten in two parts. First comes the bouillon, a clever mix of onion, tomato, garlic, saffron, white wine and other herbs and seasoning, into which you dip garlic bread croutons.

    Then, add the fish. A bouillabaisse worthy of the name is made from at least four different species, such as scorpion fish, John Dory and bass, as well as shellfish and crustaceans. The said fish is presented whole before cooking. It's hard to find a better sign of freshness. Enjoy it at Astoux et Brun.

    Location: 27 Rue Félix Faure, 06400 Cannes, France

    Open: Daily from 11 am to 11 pm

    Phone: +33 (0)4 93 39 06 22

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    4

    Daube provençale

    An alcohol-soaked stew

    A good daube provencale (Provencal beef stew) takes time. In the south, it's a popular art which goes down very well. The piece of beef or veal is steeped in a Gigondas style red wine flavoured with herbs, such as thyme and orange peel, for half a day and then steamed for four hours with small vegetables, olive oil and the marinade.

    Savour it with a generous helping of pasta or mashed potato. Accompanying this succulent meal with a glass of the same wine as is in the marinade is a must. Head to La Cuisine d’Aqui, where they prepare this delight, to get a better idea.

    Location: 6 Rue Louis Blanc, 06400 Cannes, France

    Open: Monday and Wednesday from 9 am to 5 pm, Tuesday and Thursday–Saturday from 9 am to 6 pm, Sunday from 9 am to 4.30 pm

    Phone: +33 (0)4 93 99 81 40

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    5

    Fougasse

    Your daily bread

    Fougasse (Provençal flatbread) oblong-shaped with characteristic holes is typical of the Midi region. Whether you choose to leave it plain or flavour it with anchovies, bacon cubes, olives, tomatoes, cheese, walnuts or even herbs, it'll be a joy to the taste buds. Fougasse is always perfect, whether you want to dip it into a good quality olive oil for a snack or top it with tomato, red pepper, lettuce and olives to make a kind of loaded bread.

    Fear not if you have a sweet tooth, as there's also a brioche version made with orange blossom water, the fougassette. Find it in bakeries or, if you prefer a topped version, the one at Martinez Beach (La Plage du Martinez) is worth the detour.

    Location: 73 Boulevard de la Croisette, 06400 Cannes, France

    Open: Monday–Tuesday from 9.30 am to 6 pm and from 6.30 pm to midnight, Wednesday–Sunday from 9.30 am to 6 pm and from 8 pm to midnight

    Phone: +33 (0)4 92 98 73 19

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    6

    Pistou soup

    All the taste of the south in just a spoonful

    Pistou soup, a provençal speciality, is slightly different as each town and maybe even each family has its own recipe. The basic ingredients are usually fresh vegetables (courgette, carrot and green beans), pulses (navy beans or kidney beans), pasta, grated cheese (gruyere or parmesan) and the famous sauce made from garlic, salt, olive oil and shredded basil known as pistou which is only added when serving.

    Food lovers will eat it as a starter, but it's enough on its own if you want to make a meal out of it, as long as you share. It's a classic for both family meals and at public events.

    7

    Socca

    A pre-dinner chickpea pancake

    Socca (chickpea pancake), with its pretty golden colour and inimitable mix of softness and crunchiness, is an aperitif pancake made of chickpea flour, water and olive oil. It's cooked on a large tin-coated copper plate in a wood-fired oven and preferably served hot with a dash of pepper and olive oil. Eat it by hand, ideally with a nice glass of rosé in the other.

    The best place to try it in Cannes is Socca'nne at Forville Market (Marché Forville). There's often a queue, but talking to the chef and admiring his skills will make the most of your wait.

    Location: 6 Rue du Marché Forville, 06400 Cannes, France

    Open: Tuesday–Sunday from 7.30 am to 1 pm

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    8

    Ratatouille

    A timeless classic

    Ratatouille is a stew that doesn't need an introduction: vegetables matured in the sun, carefully selected herbs and slow cooking. Made with courgette, aubergine, pepper, tomato, onion and garlic mixed with the flavours of thyme, bay leaf, summer savoury and other herbs of your choosing, ratatouille is one of the best ways to indulge while staying healthy.

    It's as delicious cold as it is hot as a starter or accompaniment for meat or fish, and it can also be the star of a simple summer evening meal if served with a portion of rice. When you know it can be bulk made in advance, you won't think twice.

    9

    Tarte tropézienne

    Gourmet cooking personified

    A tarte tropézienne is a brioche pastry, a generous layer of buttercream and pastry cream and the delicate flavour of orange blossom water, all decorated with pearl sugar. You won't be able to wait for dessert or snack time to come around. This iconic dessert won over Brigitte Bardot's heart and taste buds in 1955 when she asked for seconds during the filming of And God Created Woman (Et Dieu créa la femme).

    Nowadays, this slightly decadent treat is equally sublime and there's also a fruit version for perfect balance. Don't break tradition on your way through Cannes, but rather hurry along and get one from shop with the same name.

    Location: 5 Rue Louis Blanc, 06400 Cannes, France

    Open: Tuesday–Sunday from 7 am to 7 pm

    Phone: +33 (0)4 93 68 99 12

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    10

    Home-made ice cream

    One of the greatest pleasures of the holidays

    Stroll around La Croisette with an ice cream cone or sorbet in your hand. Now, there's sweet happiness. There's no reason to go without when you're on holiday to have a good time. The only difficulty will be choosing from the many flavours on offer. Do you like yours creamy and chocolatey or light and fruity?

    Maybe you even prefer a sorbet that's as refreshing as can be. Go for one or several scoops at Vilfeu Pere et Fils, uncontested master ice cream makers whose brightly coloured shop, found near the conference centre, will inevitably bring back memories of your childhood and carefree living.

    Location: 14 Rue Bivouac Napoléon, 06400 Cannes, France

    Open: Monday–Saturday from 11 am to 11.45 pm, Sunday from 11 am to 9.30 pm

    Phone: +33 (0)4 93 39 26 87

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