Chamonix Apres Ski ReportEnd of season madness causes mass outbreak of partying
11th April 2012
There's something about this time of year that makes people start panic-partying, as though a sudden halt to the good times is looming on the horizon. I can assure you it's not, Chamonix is officially the town that never stops partying. But don't tell anyone else that, as I'm making the most of all the frenzied end-of-season fun.
Since the Winter Sessions Weekender you might think that we'd all be taking it easy and having a bit of a rest. Not a bit of it. I've been to 2 fancy dress parties this week, and could have gone to a 3rd if my inspiration and wardrobe had been up to it. The first was at La Terrasse and was an “L” party; Lionel Richie, Lady Gaga, Lara Croft and Little Bo Peep were just some of the famous faces who turned out in honour of birthday girl Laura. Next up was Saturday night at The Pub where most of the guys took the opportunity to dress as girls (every time without fail) and other weird/wonderful costumes included a race car, Amy Winehouse, a top hat, lots of Smurfs and an asparagus (?!).
The night not-to-be-missed though was Sunday – final apres at Chambre Neuf. Possibly the biggest, sweatiest, loudest, messiest night of the season it is the best send-off anyone could hope for, with a hint of sadness that we now have to wait until December for the next one. No Limits have been playing 6 nights a week all winter and still we never get bored of them; they pack the bar out night after night as we dance on the tables, bellow along to all our favourite songs and swig/spill beer straight from the jug... utter carnage and this is all before 7pm. Roll on next winter when Ulf and the rest of the No Limits guys will be back for more.
Easter Monday was time to meet up with the girls for lunch and gossip, so we thought we'd try Casa Valerio. I've been many times for dinner but never for lunch, mainly because it's all indoors and I favour a nice terrace when the sun's out. This week has seen the weather turn a bit though (fresh snow, woohoo!) and although Monday was sunny it was still pretty chilly, so the cosy dining room at Casa Valerio was a good choice. They do 4 set menu options for lunch ranging from 13€ - 17€ for 2 or 3 courses, followed by coffee. I went off-piste though and had the bruschetta followed by Sicilian-style aubergine; the bruschetta here is one of my favourites, 3 slices of garlicky toasted baguette topped with diced tomatoes in basil and olive oil. The aubergines were also very good, baked in a rich tomato sauce and topped with mozzarella – maybe the aubergine slices could have been thicker as there wasn't much “bite” to the dish but the tomato sauce was lovely and fresh-tasting. One of my friends had the Valerio's special award-winning pizza; basically tomato and mozzarella, which doesn't sound very exciting but everyone I know who has had it has raved about the amazing flavours, so it is now on my ever-expanding “to-do” list. Lunch for 5, including one carafe of red wine and a glass of white wine, came to 100€.
Although the season is winding down there is no shortage of things to do, if anything it's the opposite as there are so many end-of-season parties and final gigs – last year even my local launderette had a farewell party with a band and a BBQ... There's is still loads of live music doing the rounds and this weekend Chamonix gets a taste of the Mediterranean when the La Corse a Cham festival comes to town. This annual event celebrates all things Corsican – food, wine, music, dancing... There will be stalls set up in the centre of town where you can buy typical Corsican produce and find out more about the island from the people who live there. Lots of bars and restaurants will be hosting Corsican-themed events such as cookery demonstrations, concerts and so on. You could even win a holiday to Corsica in the prize draw! Click here for the full 3 day schedule.
More fresh snow fell last night, so enjoy the powder while it lasts and keep an eye on our events calendar for everything that is going on in Chamonix this week.