Chef's day off requires that our guests brave the bustling metropolis that is Méribel to make their own dinner plans. And, although this may bring on pangs of insecurity about one's dinner plans and concerns about the standard vis-à-vis the The Chalet Company's standards, fear not: our unbiased, spam-free guide to restaurants in Méribel should see you through the night without an empty stomach!
If you are looking for something circular and meaty, then theMottaret Snack Bar(in the centre of Mottaret) serves up the now-legendary Mountain Burger: a burger in a baguette that's smothered in gherkins and Raclette cheese - it's bigger than it is tasty and it's unbelievably tasty!
The location is a bit difficult to find as the stall goes under various, changeable, guises - and asking someone will send you in the wrong direction - but the treasured snack bar can be found immediately opposite the Sherpa supermarket among the main buildings at the bottom of the runs. Remember you should be in the Mottaret area, not central Méribel, and just past the restaurants and hotels that crowd above the riverside green run that goes back into central Méribel. Look out for young snowboarders manhandling burgers that look bigger than a man's head. Order one and a refreshing beverage to intimidate it down and you will get change from€10. Can't say that very often in the Alps!
TheEvolution Café Baralso serves an infamous contender known in the trade as the 'Bad Boy'. To cut to the chase, it's basically a massive, homemade burger, topped with jalapenos, bacon and real cheddar: great for aficionados of spice but a bit pricier than the Mountain Burger at€17.75.
Gastronomic types may likeLa Grand CoeurRestaurant(main coursearound €55) located at the hotel of the same name. If you are a foodie, you will love this place - the menu reads like a Masterchef grand final, in the same kind of tastily abstract way. Sample main course: “Poached Wild Sea Bass Fillet, Iodised Butter Sauce, 60 Gillardeau's Oyster and Wakame Chinese Cabbage in Ginger Flavor and Sesame”.
We have yet to try Méribel's first Michelin-starred restaurant,l'Ekrin, at the newly opened five-star hotelLe Kailabut we've heard it's great and themenulooks impressive. It seems to be going down well enough on Tripadvisor too, with one guest commenting that it's “probably the best international restaurant in Méribel… if you're looking for a special evening, it's worth a visit” (signature menu€175).
Steak & Meat
Carnivores should check outle Coeur de Cristaloff the Rhodos piste. “Wood-grilled meat for the energy and home-made desserts for the gluttony” is how the restaurant sells itself and we will match that with our own recommendation that “one should not just regard the meat as a fuel for energy but also as a source of immense gastronomic pleasure” (The Chalet Company, July 2015).
If you're looking for a more authentic alpine experience thenChez Kikiin Méribel-Morel is where France's oldest man has been burning large slabs of meat over hot coals for more than 50 years. Apparently he was only there to stand-in for a friend for one week during a gap year in 1842 but one thing led to another and he's still there. Don't ask him about it though as he does have a tendency to go on…! Great experience though and wonderful food.
Those with cruder tastes should also note thatLa Brizoleedoes an accomplished steak tartare for only€20.
France in general is a bit of a culinary desert for those who shun meat or fish - and at the time of writing there are no dedicated vegetarian restaurants in Méribel. But you can still find some thoroughly decent vegetarian food at several of Méribel's other restaurants. Probably the best bet isAux Petits Oignons, which serves up a fusion of traditional French and world cuisine. If you skip past the Kangaroo fillets then you'll find at least a couple of tasty vegetarian dishes and if you stay at ourChalet Evergreenthen the restaurant's right at the end of the road!
Prices are reasonable - with most mains around€20 - €30
Plan des Mainshas two meal options - swanky restaurant upstairs or snack bar downstairs. Both are very good for what they do but the restaurant's incredible views from the location at the base of Mont Vallon are worth seeing.
Other notablemangeriesincludeLe Plantinjust outside Méribel-Village (and very close to our ownChalet Edelweiss) where you can get an excellent three-course menu for around€75;Scott's Pan Asianat theHotel Doron, which is the only dedicated Asian kitchen in Méribel (main course around€15) and chef Alain Piouzané at theHotel Allodis. We've not heard of him either but using the '(chef name) at (restaurant name)' format kinda makes the place sound high-end and therefore justifies the outrageous prices.
Enjoy!And if you're looking for a place to stay in Meribel then you could do no better than take a look at ourcatered ski chalets…