As the days become longer, the temperatures slightly warmer & the terraces of mountain restaurants busier with skiers enjoying their well earned “steak frites” and beer, we thought we’d share with you our top 10 mountain restaurants across Europe & North America.1. Cloud Nine – Aspen
1. Cloud Nine – Aspen
Dine at 10,740 feet at Cloud Nine, the former Highlands Ski Patrol hut on Highlands Mountain. Chef Andreas Fischbacher and his staff prepare gourmet meals with a European flair including fantastic raclette & fondue and more unusual osso bucco of elk among other daily specials, all to be finished off with a healthy shot of schnapps or two! This is undoubtedly one of the best mountain restaurants we’ve ever experienced!
La Folie Douce & La Fruitière in Val D’Isère & Val Thorens (new for 2009/10) are prerequisites for a well-deserved break from the slopes in the Espace Killy & Les 3 Vallees. These sister establishments cater for both fine dining, at La Fruitière & not so fine dining/ party atmosphere at La Folie Douce – why not finish skiing at 1.30pm & combine the two for the ultimate apres ski experience. La Folie Douce Website – Val D’Isere & Val Thorens
3. Crystal Hut – Blackcomb Mountain, Whistler
The Crystal Hut is a cozy log cabin on Crystal Ridge, just at the top of the Crystal Chair. It’s a perfect mid-morning stop for a hot chocolate & some famous Belgian waffles before you try your skills on Spanky’s ladder! Or if you fancy the ultimate evening dining experience, journey up to the Crystal Hut on your own snowmobile, double up with a friend, or cruise up in the comfort in a luxury 19-passenger, fully heated snowcat. Enjoy a traditional candlelit fondue dinner with fine wine, followed by fresh fruit pie baked in a wood fire oven, while being entertained with local songs and stories.
4. Chalet du Lac Besson – Alpe D’Huez
With some of the best views in the Alps, located on the edge of a frozen lake and only accessible on foot or skis, this cosy traditional Savoyard restaurant serves vast portions of hot cheese in every form imaginable as well as giant skewered gambas. Enjoy the views of the lake from the sun terrace or on a stormy day, warm yourself by the large open fire. Just make sure you big up your speed on the approach or you’ll be working up more of an appetite than expected!
5. Paradise Camp – Silver Star
Paradise Camp, located near the top of the Powder Gulch Express on the back side mountain, by day offers a great selection of hot and cold food and features a large outdoor sundeck with barbeque — perfect for those warm, sunny days. Fully licensed, Paradise is the perfect place to rest your weary bones come lunchtime after you’ve tackled the headwalls. However, every Friday and Saturday, Paradise Camp opens its doors for fine dining, everything from rib-eye steaks to succulent seafood are featured on the menu. But as good as the food is, getting there is half the fun. Hop on board the Paradise Express — a 12-seat snow cat that guides you to the back of the mountain. Paradise Camp Menu
6. Skihütte Gruobenalp – Klosters
Located on Gotschna in Klosters, the SkiHutte Gruobenalp is everything a Swiss mountain restaurant should be. Serving excellent traditional Swiss food including roesti, spätzli (home-style egg noodles), capuns (dumplings with a meat and chard filling), pizokel (dumplings with spinach, etc.) cream-filled pastries and apple strudel and not forgetting the obligatory Schümlipflümli!
7. Eagle’s Eye – Kicking Horse
A visit to Kicking Horse isn’t complete until you’ve experienced Eagle’s Eye restaurant at the top of the gondola at 7,700ft. Boasting some of the best views in Canada, the Eagle’s Eye is the perfect place to enjoy a well-earned après ski cocktail and some tasty appetizers before heading back down the mountain. The Eagle’s Eye is also open for evening dining at the weekends, serving fantastic local cuisine & BC wines. Reservations are recommended.
8. Auberge du Christomet – Megève
A perfect morning in Megève can be rounded off by a lunch visit to the Auberge du Christomet located on the Combloux side of the mountain, halfway down the Christomet Chair lift. Here you can indulge in all the best Savoyard specialties whilst enjoying spectacular views of Mont Blanc. It is a favourite for non-skiers as you can drive up to it, so you will have to book in peak season. Tel. 33 (0)4 50 21 11 34
9. Sam’s Smokehouse – Snowmass
A new addition to Snowmass, Sam’s Smokehouse features a barbecue-style smokehouse menu with a variety of culinary delights; the sweet potato fries & homemade baked beans are a must try. With jaw-dropping views of Garret’s Peak, Mount Daly and the surrounding backcountry, Sam’s boasts floor-to-ceiling windows which make the most of its surrounding area.
10. Epicéa– Flaine
Epicéa is a well-kept secret and can easily be missed. If you’re looking for a perfect sun terrace together with the great food, then you’ll find it here. They have a good range of dishes on offer which are large enough to keep you going for a good afternoon of skiing – such as pasta & steaks as well as a couple of daily ‘Plats du jour’, which are invariably excellent. Just above the main lifts in Flaine – on the piste map, look for the Green run called Epicéa, and it’s the knife and fork shown underneath the word Epicéa. Come down red run Faust to get to it, then cut off to your right near to the bottom. If you want to get one of the best spots on the terrace, essential to book! Tel. 33 (0)4 50 90 83 79
What’re your favourite mountain restaurants? Don’t worry we won’t tell too many people!