Food & Drink

Shops

The Forum Centre opposite the Croisette is a multi-level complex which forms the commercial heart of 1850. It  houses an Olympic ice rink, a gym, a bowling alley, a climbing wall and games machines along with numerous boutiques and ski-related shops.

It also contains the Sherpa Supermarket where you can stock up on food and drink; a newsagents where you can buy British papers, magazines and postcards; and a good boulangerie/ patisserie, selling bread, cakes and savory snacks. This is also a useful place for a budget lunch – they serve a generous cafe au lait and nice hot tartlets, pizza slices and filled baguettes. A cheaper, quicker alternative to a mountain restaurant on days when you want to get on with skiing rather than feasting.

There is also a largish Casino Supermarket on the main road, 100 metres down from the Forum Centre. This offers a larger choice than the Sherpa, and has a basement where liquid refreshment can be bought in bulk. 

1650 has a range of useful shops, most of which are spread along both sides of the wide 'main drag', much in the manner of a Cotswold market town. There is a Spar Supermarket for food items and household goods, a large newsagents, a boulangerie and a delicatessen. 1550 is more limited, but Le Praz has a larger supermarket than its higher cousins, facing the lift station area.

If you have a car and can travel beyond the immediate Courchevel area then it's worth a visit to Moutiers to stock up on food, drink, petrol and other essential supplies at much cheaper than ski resort prices. The biggest supermarket in Moutiers is the Carrefour – the Tesco of France. It is situated in an industrial estate on the west side of town and is best approached from the Courchevel area by driving towards the town centre, watching for signposts, and making a left turn just before reaching the bridge over the river. Another more convenient source of cheaper groceries and petrol is the Super U supermarket on the main road through Salins-les-Thermes, a suburb adjacent to Moutiers on the way to and from Courchevel. Look out for the Super U on your left as you head towards Moutiers.

Bars

Adjacent to the piste at the foot of the Forum complex in 1850 is Le Kalico, a popular and lively spot which is good for all-day food and drink, as well as happy hour and evening sessions. The back of the bar has a mezzanine level surrounding a basement dance floor, and towards midnight the place transforms into a vibrant disco. If you're single and want to meet someone, then Le Kalico is a good place to try. Look out for a price increase in the drinks around midnight.

Several of 1850's legendary trendy bars have now closed, but currently S'no LimitLe Milk Pub and L'Equipe are the spots to find the younger in-crowd. For later nightclubbing action, there's La Grange and Les Caves, but you will need deep pockets if you venture there!

In 1650 Le SignalRocky's Bar and the Bubble Bar are popular venues, and in 1550 the Chanrossa Bar, The Bar 1550 and La Taverne are lively and well known hangouts for Brits. Le Praz has a number of quiet bars, several attached to hotels, but for a trendy atmosphere the Drop Inn Bar and L'Escorche-vel are the places to go.

Restaurants

1850 has an enormous choice when it comes to restaurants. Most talked about are the Michelin-starred eateries attached to the plush hotels – Le Bateau Ivre, Le Carlina and Le Chabichou – wonderful for a gourmet experience at a stratospheric price, but there are plenty of cost-conscious alternatives.

La Saulire and La Cloche, next to one another on the east of town, are recommended for a mid-market meal. They are both very French and excellent when it come to grills, fish dishes and fondues. In L’Arbe and Le Cafe de la Poste you can get a reasonably priced salad, grill or pizza, and the restaurant of the Hotel Potiniere is another worthwhile central venue for a good value French meal, with local wines and varied cheese board.

In 1650 Le Petit Savoyard and L'Eterlou serve traditional Savoyard fare at good prices. In 1550 the Oeil du Boeuf, as its name suggests, is a popular steak house with an open fire-side grill, and Le Caveau is also excellent for grills. But the highlight of 1550 is La Cortona – the source of the best pizzas to be had anywhere in Courchevel, cooked on wood fires. Because of its reputation it's often full, and you won't get in there on holiday staff nights off, which says it all, really!

For lower altitude gourmet eating, Le Bistro du Praz in Le Praz is legendary. The foie gras and fondues are a house specialty, and the occasional famous face can be seen in its low-lit interior. Le Ya Ca has a lot of atmosphere, Chez Kinou serves nice sweet crepes and other dishes, and the restaurant of the Hotel les Peupliers is popular for a traditional French lunch or dinner.

Mountain Restaurants

As with resort-level eateries, the Courchevel area abounds in slope-side establishments, with a big range in prices. Of course in a ski-to-your-door resort like Courchevel there is crossover between resort and mountain restaurants – the versatile Le Kalico, right on the thoroughfare piste between the 1850 and 1550 areas, could qualify as a mountain restaurant as well as a bar and a disco, and the Bellecote hotel restaurants in 1850, and the slope-facing ones in 1650 attract a mixture of skiers and non-skiers for lunch. If you've skied down to Le Praz around lunchtime and you aren't worried about cost, then Le Bistro du Praz is within sight of the of the slopes. Going further up to the green Verdons piste, just above 1850, you'll find the most celebrated Courchevel mountain restaurant, Le Chalet de Pierres, where bow-tied waiters serve an excellent but expensive gastronomic lunch with a renowned dessert buffet.

Further up still – but a lot lower in price!  Les Chenus, at the top of the Chenus bubble, and the nearby La Soupcoupe, on top of Loze, offer self-service fare for the more average pocket.  Right on top of the Saulire mountain rests the appropriately named Le Panoramic – it's on the expensive side, but worth a visit on a fine day just to take in the incredible views.

Heading east towards the altiport there are two restaurants – the very chic and expensive Le Cap Horn (bring your Lear Jet and Rolex), and the quite reasonable self-service L'Altibar. In the 1650 area there is only one mountain restaurant, Le Bel Air, and it's about the best in the whole of Courchevel, worth scheduling a special trip to 1650 to experience (ski down from Col de Chanrossa, perhaps). Though waiter service, it is not outrageously priced and has an interesting range of dishes. The omelet Savoyard is a feast in itself, and the views from the sunny terrace are wonderful.

Over on the La Tania side there is one mountain restaurant, Le Bouc Blanc, near the Praz Juget station, which is mid-range in price. Down in La Tania itself Pub le Ski Lodge, bordering on the piste, is good for a value lunch as well as for après ski drinks.

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