Megève, France is a prime example of high-class elegance, with luxurious hotels, designer shops and gourmet dining options available. Here, we explore 10 of the best restaurants, bistros and chalets in Megève.
Branding itself as a purveyor of high-altitude, al fresco fine dining, L’Alpette has been perched atop the Emile Allais track, at 1895 meters above sea level, for almost eight decades now. Its huge outdoor terrace, split into two parts, comes complete with communal tables, lounge chairs and unforgettable views, as well as a mascot cow to underline that Alpine vibe. The dining area is also a twofold affair, with the first floor, a dedicated fromagerie, serving typically Savoyard cheeses. The ground floor has an excellent menu of comforting stews, meats and more upscale delicacies such as foie gras. Fill up on this chic-yet-hearty fare before going out to ski again, and remember to leave enough room for a sweet treat from the dessert buffet.
Don’t let the first impression fool you: Le Crystobald may not look like much, with a decor that’s very basic compared to the more upscale restaurants of Megève, but this little gem is a culinary surprise not easily forgotten. Unpretentious and homey, the venue’s greatest asset is its chef, Olivier Chevriault, whose dedication to freshly sourced and local ingredients sets the rhythm for his excellent kitchen. Le Crystobald’s menu changes frequently, and there are options for a la carte and set menu dining. Some of the signature classics in the past have included the melt-in-the-mouth, honey-glazed duck breast, and the succulent herb-encrusted lamb shank.
Situated in the five-star Le Fer à Cheval hotel, L’Alpage combines a high-class, chic setting with a typically Alpine atmosphere where each element of the inviting decor could be classed as an antique. The restaurant’s signature dishes are inspired by Savoyard recipes with an emphasis on hearty simplicity, and although the menu isn’t very long, it’s all about the quality of each individual dish. L’Alpage is commonly said to serve the best fondue in town, but the Swiss-style raclette and the tartiflette – an indulgent affair combining reblochon cheese, onions, bacon and potatoes all baked and melted together – are also worth a try.
La Taverne du Mont d’Arbois
La Taverne du Mont d’Arbois is part of the Domaine du Mont d’Arbois, a breathtaking plateau first discovered and made famous by the Baroness Noémie de Rothschild, who opened it up as a skiing resort in the 1920s. Her resourcefulness and energy still live on in the hotels and restaurants that belong to the Domaine group, and La Taverne is one of them. Wood-clad inside and out, charming and intensely welcoming, the restaurant serves a good range of inspired Savoyard classics, from the truffle fondue to the pigeon roasted in a cocotte with a macaroni gratin. In the summer, there is a covered patio allowing customers to dine al fresco and soak up the sun. Remember that service can be a bit slow, but the food will more than make up for the wait.
La Raviere is no ordinary restaurant. You can find it nestled on a quiet piste just off the Raviere run. Follow their sign, and ski down through a small wood to find yourself in a secluded, traditional chalet-style restaurant where authenticity reigns supreme. But don’t be fooled by the hard-to-find location, and do book in advance, as La Raviere has become very popular thanks to its no-frills charm. Its simple, rustic fare is based on Alsatian recipes, so expect to see a lot of heavy meat, perfect for recharging your batteries after a morning of skiing. The wine selection is all about bottles from Alsace, but don’t overdo it – you still have to find yourself out of La Raviere and onto the piste.
Le Refuge sits in the quaint village of Leutaz, just above Megève, making it a great spot for a getaway from the busy town. A small, cozy, entirely unpretentious affair, Le Refuge combines elements of contemporary chic, that special Megève flair and down-to-earth attitude. This gives rise to dishes that are classic yet innovative, satisfying yet tantalizing. From ultra-fresh sashimi to hearty veal croquettes and succulent racks of lamb, freshness and fabulous presentation are guaranteed, as is a lively, youthful atmosphere. If the sun is out, make sure you call ahead and book a table on the balcony, which overlooks a beautiful, tree-covered mountain – a distinguishing feature in an area filled with slope-facing chalets.
La Ferme de Mon Père / Le Chalet Zannier
Le Chalet Zannier shares its history with the legendary La Ferme de Mon Père, which was the only restaurant in the world ever to receive a perfect score of 20/20 from the critics at Gault Millau. Although the restaurant closed in 2005, it was renovated and opened again by different owners, as part of the Zannier Group, in 2011. Following its come-back with a different chef and menu, La Ferme de Mon Père may not be what it once was, but it’s still one of the best fine dining options in the city, with a romantic ambiance and sense of history permeating the venue. Try the succulent Holstein beef, which is matured for 49 days prior to serving, or the snails, prepared with brown butter, shallots and aromatic parsley, then visit the wine bar for a late evening tipple.
Chez Tante Alice
A welcome change from the fine-dining, Savoyard-inspired establishments that populate Megève and its surrounds, Chez Tante Alice is an unpretentious little restaurant in the center of the village. Don’t expect to receive gourmet treatment, but the dishes here are solid and relatively inexpensive, with two menus on offer: the Paris menu, and the Bangkok menu. This quirky choice of French and Thai cuisines includes such favorites as sautéed wok dishes with chicken of beef, and beefsteak served with chips and a side salad. Chez Tante Alice makes for a good, quiet neighborhood bistro for a quick, no-frills lunch.
Le Face au Mont-Blanc
As its name suggests, Le Face au Mont-Blanc is famous for its breathtaking view of the Mont Blanc, as well as the village of Megève. Inside, countless memorabilia, paintings and books contribute towards the homey, warm ambiance which is comfortable and inviting, rather than haute cuisine. There is a buffet of starters and desserts to guarantee a wide choice, as well as an a la carte dining menu which offers French and international classics – roast medallions of veal loin and cream sauce of morel mushrooms, grilled beef fillet with béarnaise sauce and burgers with beef, escalope of foie gras and vegetables are just some of the appetizing, home-cooked options on the menu. Le Face au Mont-Blanc sits right at the top of the Jaillet skiing area, making it accessible by ski and by foot.
Flocons de Sel
No list of the best restaurants in Megève would be complete without a mention of the brilliant Flocons de Sel, arguably the best restaurant in the area. The food here is a vision, expertly executed by Chef Emmanuel Renaut whose three Michelin stars and experience cooking for Marc Veyrat of La Ferme de Mon Pere fame speak for themselves. Just as the dishes are pictures of creativity and gourmet freshness, so too is the decor, a reinvention of the classic Alpine style with contemporary design. The menu changes seasonably, of course, but you can expect to catch glimpses of Chef Renaut’s highly Savoyard inspiration across the carefully curated tasting menus on offer.
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