Chamonix-Mont-Blanc is one of only a few European ski resorts to have a significant year-round population, and a summer season so busy it makes the winters seem quiet. It’s a bustling town filled with a huge range of shops from the high-end to the budget-friendly. There are restaurants in Chamonix around every corner, and even a museum for the historically inclined.
This is not your one-road, three-restaurant ski village.
Sitting on the Swiss and Italian borders, Chamonix has been an important rest-stop, strategic location, and thoroughfare since long before skiing was anything other than transport in Norway. In contrast to the purpose-built, ski-in/ski-out, modernist fare of Flaine and Les Arcs, Chamonix is a ski town with history. As you might expect from a resort so large and popular, the choice of restaurants in Chamonix can be sort of overwhelming.
From Asian fusion to classic French, Japanese, Indian and Italian, restaurants in Chamonix come in all shapes and sizes, and it’s not always easy to sort the wheat from the chaff. So, to make life easier for you, here’s the lowdown on Chamonix’s best restaurants as chosen by locals.
A relative newcomer in Chamonix, Mumma has been open for a year this December. With one of Chamonix best chefs running the kitchen, sleek interiors, and an outside bar that’s one of the town’s hottest spots in the summer months, it’s already got a reputation. A small, intimate restaurant with seating that snakes around the room, this is a rare case of a restaurant being simultaneously cool and cosy.
Mumma specialises in tapas-style small plates, often with an Asian-fusion flavour. The menu changes regularly, meaning it’s rare to get the same selection of dishes twice, and there’s a great selection of sakis. As far as restaurants in Chamonix go, this might not have been around long, but it’s already one of the best.
A little taste of Parisian chic in the mountains, Atmosphere has a one-star Michelin seal of approval. With a small entrance that leads to a stairwell, you’d be forgiven for not realising this is one of Chamonix’s best restaurants to begin with. Once you’re downstairs though, it’s a modern restaurant that overlooks the Arve River running through the middle of town.
Serving modern French cuisine, Atmosphere is more reasonably priced than you might expect from a restaurant with a Michelin Star. They serve a lunch deal that tends to draw many of the French locals, giving it a real authentic vibe.
3. La Télécabine
There aren’t many restaurants in Chamonix that are so simultaneously unmistakable and unnoticed. With a big red decorative télécabine, and a massive terrace that catches the midday sun during the summer season, this is a great choice of restaurant for that big party you were planning.
Specialising in local Savoyarde cuisine, as well as global dishes, the food at La Télécabine is always fantastic. The restaurant serves a reduced menu throughout the day, and they can often accommodate walk-ins for those early evening arrivals. This is another restaurant listed in the Michelin guide, although not starred just yet, making it officially one of Chamonix’s best restaurants.
4. Casa Valerio
Many of the restaurants in Chamonix are Italian, thanks to the Mont Blanc Tunnel linking Chamonix and Courmayeur together, and they’re all pretty decent. What sets Casa Valerio apart from the rest is the superior menu and the location. If you can get a table by the window, you’ll be eating pizza overlooking the river.
This summer, for the first time, Casa Valerio occupied the park space across the road which gave it one of the best outside spaces in the town. I understand why you might want to just hop across the border for authentic Italian food, but if you don’t fancy the drive this is probably Chamonix’s best restaurant when it comes to pizza, pasta, and all things Italian.
Two Asian-fusion restaurants in Chamonix might seem like overkill, but trust me, they’re both worth it. Munchies has been a Chamonix institution for years, and the staff are superb, the chefs are consistently good and the menu is varied enough that you’re not likely to find yourself confronted with the same dishes as you’ve been served at Mumma.
Located on what’s affectionately known as Pub Street, Munchies is a great jumping-off point for an evening out, with Les Caves and Bar du Moulin both just across the road for a post-dinner aperitif and a cocktail or three.
Restaurants in Chamonix: Honourable Mentions
There you have it, Chamonix’s top five restaurants as chosen by genuine locals. With that said, there are some excellent restaurants in Chamonix we locals love that didn’t make the cut; from Bighorn to Monkey Bar, Annapurna, and Satsuki. Further up the valley, Cabane du Praz sits on the golf course and offers great food and stunning views.
Happy eating everybody!