An independent guide to Val Thorens
Here, find out about Val Thorens mountain restaurants. There are eleven mountain restaurants in the Val Thorens-Orelle ski area, where you can stop for coffee, vin chaud, or lunch. There's one at the top of the Cime de Caron, with great views; the stylish Chalet de la Marine, on the blue run Les Dalles; party central, the Folie Douce; and many other options too. Read about Val Thorens mountain restaurants here.
Chalet de la Marine is one of the best mountain restaurants in the Val Thorens ski area. They have a self-service restaurant downstairs, called the 'Bistro de la Marine', and the restaurant proper upstairs.
There's a marine theme to the chalet, with life-rings part of the decoration. Their website states, 'Our decoration, between sea and mountain will remind you of the diversity of the meals.' Well, in any case, the décor is beautifully done.
The bistro is for drinks, or a quick lunch. The prices are fairly high, getting close to €5 for a big coffee or chocolat chaud. The restaurant upstairs is pricey, but very good, with the desserts particularly tempting.
They do Savoyarde meals with torchlit descent in the evening (must be booked in advance). You can also reserve the Mongolian yurt for an evening meal: it seats up to 16, and the dishes are prepared in advance by the Marine chefs, and set up on a vintage stove; return to resort on snowshoes or skis.
Tel: 00 33 479 00 01 86
At the top of the Plein Sud and Pionniers chairlifts, La Fruitière and La Folie Douce are amongst the attractions of Val Thorens. La Fruitière is a prestigious restaurant, and La Folie Douce a well-known party/dance bar.
(The original Fruitière/Folie Douce is in Val d'Isere, and a new one opened in winter 2012/13 under Saulire Express 1, in Méribel).
La Fruitière is one of the smartest mountain restaurants in Val Thorens. ValThorensGuide has it on good authority (a ski instructor who sat at the next table) that William and Kate had lunch here in 2012. It is a fairly recent construction (2009), and the décor has a dairy theme, with milk churns. (A fruitière is a place where farmers take their milk to be transformed into cheese, in the Jura and Savoie regions).
It serves excellent food at fairly high, but not outrageous, prices. A plat du jour costs around €21. You could spend €1,900 on a bottle of Château Cheval Blanc, if you felt so inclined. I'd want the white horse as well, at that price. In 2016/17, the chef is Damien de Valukhoff, and the pasty chef is Romain Berkrouber. Reservation recommended (for 12.15/1230, or 2.15/2.30).
Tel: 00 33 479 00 04 27
The Folie Douce calls itself an open air club. From around 3pm until the lifts close about 5pm, there's a DJ, singers and (often) a saxophonist on the balcony, and people dance on the terrace and tables below.
The original Folie Douce is in Val d'Isere, but the Val Thorens version has quickly become a fixture of the resort, and is popular most days and in most weather. Even if you don't want to join in with the madness, it's worth a look from the chairlift.
Inside, there's a bar, open from 9am until the lifts close, and a self-service restaurant called Nuvo Self, serving food from 11.30am to 3pm.
See our video of La Folie Douce:
Built by Camille Rey, one of the pioneers of Val Thorens, Les Aiguilles de Péclet sits at the top of the Funitel Péclet. Downstairs, there's a bar, serving good coffee and cookies, and the self-service restaurant. Upstairs, there's a sit-down restaurant.
It's accessible to people with pedestrian passes. An evening meal and torchlit descent can be organised.
Tel: 00 33 479 00 03 76
This can't have been the easiest place to build a mountain restaurant - right at the top of the Cime de Caron. The best reason to stop here is to admire the stunning views from the terrace.
It's a wooden chalet which has been relatively recently re-decorated inside, with modern freestyle and freeride pictures on the wall. The furniture is functional but quite elegant. The sloping floor adds to the cafe's character. The owner and staff are welcoming and friendly. They don't have running tapwater, so you have to buy bottled water, and the WC is a primitive affair in the next-door hut.
Tel: 00 33 607 31 04 14
La Moutière was one of the first mountain restaurants in Val Thorens. It sits at the bottom of the Plateau piste.
It has quite a large terrace, and the real fire inside makes it cosy on a cold day. It serves straightforward food, at prices which are as close to reasonable as you're likely to get in a Val Thorens mountain restaurant. There's also a snack hut outside.
Tel: 00 33 479 00 02 67
In the Rosaël sector (Orelle), at the bottom of the Rosaël chairlift, the Chalet Chinal Donat makes an excellent coffee stop. It has a large, sunny terrace, so is very popular in good weather. There are free carafes of tap water, and you can help yourself, which is unusual and very welcome. The restaurant is self-service, and the food not bad.
Tel: 00 33 479 56 53 01
A favourite of ValThorensGuide's, the Chalet des 2 Ours is in the Boismint sector.
It is quite spacious inside, and has a good view down the Belleville Valley, especially from the 'conservatory' extension. All the food is home-made. There's also a big terrace, and a snack hatch outside, with picnic-style tables and deckchairs.
There are no bears, in spite of the restaurant's name, but there is a nice dog, which wears a harness.
Tel: 00 33 479 01 14 09
Le Caribou is in a red building part-way down the Génépi piste, in the Moraine sector. It's in a good location. Reports suggest the service is not always as polite and helpful as it might be. Perhaps it will improve - give us your impression in the comments at the bottom of the page.
Chalet des 2 Lacs is accessible to anyone who can do a green run. Take the 2 Lacs chair, turn left at the top, and you arrive at this restaurant.
It's nice inside, especially if you can sit near the real fire. It developed a poor reputation under the old management, but in winter 2017-18 was taken over by the Yak & Yeti group (which includes Chalet de la Marine, Hotel Pashmina, & Hotel 3 Valleys). Now customers can expect excellent service from managers Nils and Lauren, and good food and drinks. It's quite pricey.
Tel: 00 33 479 00 28 54
Les Chalets du Thorens are also accessible by green-run skiers or boarders - take the Deux Lacs chair, and turn left, heading for the Combe de Thorens. It is a sprawling complex, with a waffle stand, snackbars selling sandwiches, a pizzeria, self-service restaurant, and a proper restaurant with waiter service.
ValThorensGuide's experience of the service, just having morning coffee there on a couple of occasions, has been very, very poor, but this may be bad luck. It is fair to point out that some of the different concessions are run by different people, so the welcome may be different depending on what you're ordering. The noodle bar is popular with season workers, which is usually the sign of a good business.
This is the apres-ski bar, along the same lines as the Folie Douce. It is popular all season, but especially during the Varsity Trip week in December, and Dutch week in early May.
Tel: 00 33 479 00 02 80
Le Chalet de Caron is on the right hand side of the Cairn piste, close to the Caron bubble station. It has a bar and a self-service restaurant. There's a large, sunny terrace.
Tel: 00 33 479 00 01 71
May you find the perfect hot chocolate in one of the Val Thorens mountain restaurants.
Some of the restaurants in the resort of Val Thorens are easily accessible to skiers and boarders, including those in and around place Caron, like la Maison and Café Face West. Read our guide to the restaurants in Val Thorens.
We have a detailed guide to the Val Thorens ski area, including the beginners' area, an overview of the ski area, the snowpark, skiercross, and slalom stadium, and some of the off piste itineraries. It's based on personal knowledge and experience over many seasons, and it has useful advice and tips.
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