I have just returned from spending Christmas in La Tania, where my niece and nephew are working as chalet hosts for the season. The snow was amazing (the best Christmas snow since 1957 apparently!) and our party of teenagers (and a few of the oldies) enjoyed some fabulous skiing in the Three Valleys.
A number of different mountain restaurants were chosen for lunch, although for good food and seriously good value for money (in the Three Valleys) it was worth venturing back down into La Tania to The Ski Lodge – I can thoroughly recommend the kangaroo steak!
The Spar supermarket in Courcheval 1850 is also worth a visit, if only for the novelty value of seeing its remarkably well-stocked wine shelves – surely the only Spar where you can actually buy a bottle of Mouton Rothschild, Latour or Lafite !!
On the last day we decided to lunch up above Courcheval 1850 at Le Pilatus. I was delighted to see a familiar name on the wine list – André & Michel Quenard’s 2011 Chignin Vieilles Vignes. Since we were almost in the producer’s backyard, so to speak, this was definitely a must try wine. A clear pale lime colour, it was delightfully “˜Alpine’ fresh and pure, with zesty fruit and hints of peach on the palate. Well balanced and easy drinking, this is not a big wine but is simply delicious and was the perfect accompaniment to the traditional Savoyard dishes (tartiflette and croziflette) that we had for lunch. Three bottles later (between 7 of us I might add) the ski slopes looked a lot less challenging …
Definitely a “˜must buy’ for my cellar; for drinking now with hot savoury cheese dishes and in the summer either as an aperitif or with light lunches and dinners.
By Caroline Freeman, Suffolk Office