Spring 4

Spring Has Sprung In Samoëns - And It’s All About The Food!

By Barbara Allan

Spring has most definitely sprung here in the Grand Massif. And at this time of year there really is nothing better than a few hours of great spring-skiing in the morning followed by a long, leisurely lunch on a sunny terrace. We are in France after all. And a holiday to a country with such a rich, culinary history just wouldn’t be a holiday if you didn’t sample some of the local delights!

Food really is a glorious thing to the French. Good cooking is embedded deep in the culture; it’s a proud part of every French person’s life. And I mean everyone. I’ve not met a French man or woman yet who doesn’t know how to whip up a silky smooth vinaigrette in seconds - from scratch! Nor have I come across a French person who can’t explain, with pride in their voice, how to make a traditional dish. That’s another fascinating thing about food here in France. You need only travel to or meet someone from another department, sometimes just a stone’s throw away, and there’ll be yet another traditional, regional culinary delight to be discovered.

Here in the Haute Savoie traditional cooking is a simple, country affair. Fresh, locally sourced ingredients such as cheese, apples, pears, plums, mountain berries and mushrooms, wild game, and fish from the local and surrounding lakes are the raw staples used by our mountain chefs. Visitors to the Alps enjoy hearty soups and stews, light, crisp salads with warmed goat’s cheese, magnificent fruit tarts and of course let’s not forget the famous Savoyard Fondue or even better known Tartiflette. This rich and creamy potato gratin with bacon and Reblochon is just divine.

The reblochon cheese is what makes it so special, with its deliciously pungent aroma and somewhat nutty flavour. The soft, washed-rind cheese is in fact produced from the milk of cows from our very own alpine pastures. It’s no wonder it’s so tasty then! Anyone that’s been here in the spring or summer would know that our cows – the gentle, brown-eyed beasts, with bells clanking joyously at their chests - enjoy the season munching on lush green pastures and literally hundreds of varieties of mountain flowers. Life is simple. And it’s simplicity that is the secret to dishes like the Tartiflette and our region’s cuisine.

Simple, honest and robust fare is just what’s in order after conquering the slopes of the Grand Massif, and you’ll find it in abundance here. There are plenty of lovely little restaurants to choose from, either up on the slopes or down in the charming villages. Some of my favourite mountain restaurants include Lou Caboëns at Samoëns 1600, La Reposette in Vercland, Chalet Clair at the top of the Sairon chairlift in Morillon and L’Epicéa restaurant on the slopes in Flaine. For a list of the bars and restaurants Alps Accommodation recommends in town checkout our restaurant guide.

Then all that will be left to do is sink your teeth into some fresh and wholesome mountain food. After a bit of spring-skiing of course!

We have a huge range of special offers for the remaining weeks of the season.