After a day on the slopes, there’s nothing better than rewarding your efforts with something warm and boozy, and cosying up with some alpine comfort food. London may not be renowned for its powdery pistes, but there are plenty of places to enjoy some après-ski, without the ski. No falling off the ski lift, no grappling with your frozen boots, no snow in your sandwiches. Just log fires, snug rugs, and cockle-warming cuisine.
1. Le Chalet
Le Chalet feels likes you’re perched on top of an Austrian mountain. In fact, it’s an alpine oasis high above Oxford Street on the Selfridge’s rooftop. From ex-Ivy head chef and seasoned pop-up pro Des McDonald, comes wintry warmers in the form of chicken schnitzel with blue cheese fondue, apple strudel with custard, and a cinnamon and rum hot chocolate. If that’s not tempting enough, how about spit-roast suckling pig, deep-fried frog’s legs, and a brandy and vanilla rice pudding? Decked out with wooden panelling and fairy lights, Le Chalet brings the magic of the mountains to Mayfair.
2. Montague Ski Lodge Book Montague Ski Lodge
With a carpet of snow, piste maps on the walls, and red-nosed reindeers standing around snowy pine trees, Montague Ski Lodge has to be one of London’s most wintry venues. Sip a spiced cider, tuck into a bratwurst, and lose yourself in the snuggest of twinkling wonderlands.
3. Lodge d’Argent See more on Coq d’Argent
The slopes of the French Alps may seem a far cry from London’s financial district, but this winter pop-up at Coq d’Argent has brought snowy chalet chic to the City. Wrapped in a furry blanket, let the tartiflette, fondue and hot toddies transport you to snowier climes, or go for all-out alpine authenticity with the whole baked reblochon or warm brioche stuffed with Morteaux sausage and Beaufort cheese.
4. Bodo’s Schloss
Go a little off-piste from the busy tracks of High Street Kensington and you’ll find Bodo’s Schloss. Staff in lederhosen will serve your fondue whilst you take in the surroundings of wooden walls and gingham tablecloths. With the likes of an alpine charcuterie board and a signature weiner schnitzel on offer, the authentic après vibe certainly extends to the food. There’s even a cocktail drunk out of a ski boot, and an old ski lift cabin plonked in the middle of the restaurant. It doesn’t get much more après-ski than that.
5. Valhalla Vodka Bar at Skylounge See more on Skylounge
Skylounge’s outdoor terrace has been transformed into a Scandinavian hideaway for the winter. Warmed by heaters and some boozy concoctions, the Valhalla Vodka Bar pop-up serves up hearty, Viking fare, from flamed meats, to Scandinavian cheeses and artisan breads. There may not be mountain views, but overlooking Tower Bridge, The Gherkin, and The Shard is not a bad substitute.
6. Rum Chalet at Floridita
When talking about wintry ski lodges, a South American restaurant in Soho probably won’t be on the tip of your tongue. But Floridita have brought together the unlikely combination of Latin American cuisine and ski chic with their rum chalet. Mix warming rum cocktails, spicy tapas, and wooden winter décor, and you’ve got a uniquely cosy retreat.
7. The Winter Cabin at York & Albany
Gordon Ramsay’s Camden gastropub once again plays host to a cosy winter cabin. The food is a delectable roll-call of comforting creations, including wild boar sausages, black pudding scotch eggs, and venison sausage rolls. With tartan rugs, animal skins and spiced bloody Marys, dragging yourself out of the cosy chairs may be a struggle.
8. Off-Piste at The Gun
Complete with fur rugs, mountain-themed walls and even stuffed animals in ski goggles, The Gun has gone all out with its off-piste pop-up. Available for private hire, guests can indulge in mulled wine and spiced cider, a snowball throw from the river in London’s Docklands.
9. The Lodge
This south London pop-up ticks all the boxes when it comes to recreating a ski lodge: Fondue, wooden décor, blankets, and mulled stuff. All that’s missing is the snow itself. What The Lodge lacks in snow it makes up for with cheese however – the fondue dipping pot with a cheese blend that’s flavoured with kirsch and white wine is enough to make a cheese-lover weep with joy.
10. The Leather Bottle
Whistler, Cortina, St Anton, Verbier, Meribel. Not only a list of some of the world’s best ski resorts, but the names of the 5 ski chalets in The Leather Bottle’s massive garden. If the usual array of mulled offerings and ski paraphernalia isn’t enough, there’s a snowboard simulator to really get into the resort spirit. Probably not a good idea to try it après the mulled wine though.