Chambre Neuf has undergone a bit of a transformation, with a big refurbishment and reorganisation of space, tables and the bar at the beginning of the winter season.
Following this refurbishment, they not only have a hip new look, but also a great new menu. They’ve reinstated their original winning formula of hearty portions, inventive daily specials, and reasonable prices.
The new menu features some tempting options and the ardoise du jour (slate of the day) is a reasonably priced 12.50€ with three dishes to choose from, including a vegetarian option.
This instantly becomes even better value when you realise that the soup of the day and free rein of the salad bar are included in the price.
Today’s soup was Jerusalem artichoke and salsify - a light but creamy soup with plenty of flavour. Bean salad, juicy mushrooms with red and green peppers, pickled red onion, green salad, olive tapenade, croutons, parmesan cheese and various dressing awaited us at the salad bar, along with a basket of their delicious homemade bread. Having already ordered, it was hard work not to ruin our appetites before lunch was even on the table.
Our lunch dishes arrived quickly. Between the four of us we had ordered a falafel salad, focaccia with hummus and grilled vegetables, and two dishes of lamb with Greek salad, as well as a child’s meal of chicken and chips.
A generous serving of crispy falafel was served on a bed of green salad with tomato, parsley and marinated cabbage dressed in a garlic cream sauce and served with baked sweet potato - all piled into a giant tortilla.
The salad was definitely a major part of the dish rather than just a garnish, with lots of different textures and flavours going on. The falafel had a good crisp exterior but were disappointingly mushy inside; the ingredients had been blended to a smooth paste before being rolled into balls, so there was no satisfying bite to them or chunks of chickpea to give them a bit of substance. They tasted good though, which is the main thing!
Two big slices of toasted foccacia were drizzled in olive oil and served with grilled aubergine and courgette, with a massive dollop of houmous and chunks of roasted sweet potato. The menu mentioned walnuts of which there were none, but I didn’t notice until I’d finished, so the dish obviously wasn’t suffering for the lack of them.
The bread was nice and crispy and the grilled vegetables simply dressed in olive oil, salt and pepper; the hummus was creamy and had just the right amount of garlic. I think the sweet potatoes had been reheated, as they were a bit dried out and tough round the edges but they still added a nice flavour contrast.
A big chunk of roast lamb was served alongside a generous helping of tzatziki, a Greek side salad and a couple of pieces of pita bread. The freshness of the yoghurt tzatziki and the tangy feta cheese offset the heavy flavour of the roast lamb, but the pita breads were very dry and thick.
They were OK for dipping in the tzatziki and mopping up the lamb juices but you couldn’t have stuffed anything inside them or they would have fallen apart. The homemade bread from the salad was much better, so we opted for more of that instead!
The children’s meal was a piece of grilled chicken breast with chips, a few lettuce leaves and a sliced tomato. It was nice enough but came to the table long after the other dishes, meaning that our little diner was made to wait; normally the children's meals are served first to avoid them getting fidgety. I think his meal had perhaps been forgotten, as it arrived very shortly after we reminded the waiting staff.
It was simple but nicely cooked; however the children’s menu could have been a bit more inventive than chicken and chips, sausage and chips, burger and chips or spaghetti bolognaise. The menu included a soft drink and a bowl of vanilla ice cream with chocolate sauce, which isn’t bad for 8€. He was so full after his main meal that the ice cream was shared around the table and doubled up as dessert for everyone.
The ambience at Chambre Neuf was very relaxed and friendly, with our coterie of two babies, one small child and one large dog being made very welcome. We ate at our leisure, with no pressure to finish, and ended the meal achingly full and very content.
We washed our food down with a half litre of the house red wine and a glass of house white wine; the five dishes, wine and one espresso came to just 69.50€. Excellent value for such a tasty and plentiful lunch.
Location: Chamonix - Centre
Cuisine: Brasserie / Bistro | Gastro-pub | International | Scandinavian | Vegetarian
Vibe / Atmosphere: Funky / Hip | Laid-back / Chilled | Modern
Access: Children welcome | Disabled access | Pets welcome
Open Seasons: Spring | Summer | Autumn | Winter