Wherever you eat in Les Grand Bornand it is difficult to escape traditional Savoyard ambience and pungent-smelling melted cheese. But why would you want to? The village is as authentically montagnard as it gets – and the food follows. However, after a full week of fondue, raclette, and tartiflette you may want to impose a moratorium on dairy products and air-dried meat.
On the mountain, L’Igloo (+33 450 27 02 67) overlooks Chinaillon and is recommended for its views and the good value traditional cuisine. Non-skiers can also reach it by car. Le Chalet Venay has been in the same family for over 100 years. It specialises in simple mountain dishes at sensible prices – fondue, homemade sausages, and local trout.
La Taverne (+33 450 27 08 85) is an old mountain restaurant at the top the lift of the same name and overlooking the village. A La Ferme du Pepe (+33 450 02 76 63) is a wooden chalet offering cheesy Savoyard cuisine at sensible prices. La Duche (+33 450 27 02 23) is another traditional place at the foot of the slopes. Le Chatillon (+33 450 27 02 76) offers Savoyard specialities such as tartiflette, crepes and home-made tartes. Le Roc des Arces (+33 450 27 03 43), near the Rosay gondola, serves traditional cuisine and has a good sun terrace. La Bournerie (+33 450 27 00 28) is a lovely ancient farmhouse – built in 1805 – that serves regional produce.
Tomme bonne et Reblochon
In the resort, Hotel Chalet Les Saytels (+33 492 47 24 72) is particularly recommended for the quality of the food and modest prices. Other rustic offerings include Au Bon Vieux Temps (+33 450 02 32 38), L’Arpege (+33 450 02 73 93), and La Table du Chalet (+33 450 02 20 16).
A visit to L’Hysope in the village is a much more gastronomic experience. Vanessa and Jean-Christophe Prat are renowned for noid de coquille St Jacques in a cream sauce and goat roasted with wild mushrooms. La Cremaillere is a hotel restaurant serving traditional dishes with a twist: warm goat’s cheese salad with blueberries, and breast of duck with honey from the chef’s hives are just two of the dishes.
Fairytale farmhouse fare
Up at Chinaillon, there’s Chez Manue (+33 450 09 62 24) for traditional Savoyard cuisine, and L’Alpage (+33 450 27 00 49) has a warm atmosphere and serves regional cuisine with an original twist. La Ferme de Lormay is open daily. Known as Chez Albert to the locals, it is a timber farmhouse constructed in 1786 at the far end of the Vallee du Bouchet, about seven kilometers from Le Grand Bornand. Chef Albert Bonamy cooks and serves totally authentic mountain dishes using seasonal local ingredients (he even smokes his own ham and trout). Fantastic food in a fairytale setting around a cheerful, crackling log-fire, and as Savoyard as it gets.
See also our features on What You Should Know About Lake Annecy Skiing and The Best Mountain Food All Skiers Should Try At Least Once.