Fondue in the French Alps

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What is fondue and why is it a must-try when visiting our French Alps ski resorts? Get ready cheese lovers, we dipping into one of the tastiest specialities of the French Alps and exploring a selection of our favourite places to eat this legendary creation… the Fondue Savoyarde.

They say the cheese fondue has been around since 800 BC, being made a Swiss national dish in the 1930s, however our Fondue Savoyarde goes back to the 17th century and is personally the tastiest of all the fondues out there.

Created by poor French Alpine families who had limited access to fresh foods, especially during winter months. They would avoid wasting their valuable cheese and bread by transforming it into a heart-worthy treat and convivial family moment. Cooking the cheese with a little splash of wine would kill off any dangerous bacteria and then dipping the stale bread into the cheese mix would soften it, making it easier to eat. 

The fondue name originates from the French word ‘fondre’ which translates in English ‘to melt’. It is a fun and very social meal for couples, friends and families. But it comes with its traditions, so be warned if you participate in this meal, you must abide by the rules…

The Rules

1. You must drink white wine and white wine only

So the story goes, drinking anything other than this, even water can make the cheese fondue coagulate in your stomach, making it, shall we say a little uncomfortable. 
But, does this mean children should not be eating fondues? Or do all French children drink wine… I’ll let you decide or find a solution!

2. Don’t drop your bread

If you do, be prepared for a dare. This normally entails running outside in the snow naked.

3. Turn clockwise or in a figure of eight

Never counter-clockwise! Supposedly, this makes the cheese tastier, and less likely for your bread to fall in too.

4. Don’t eat directly from your fondue fork

Always scrape your bread from your fondue fork onto your plate and eat it afterwards. This is a sharing dish and others don’t want to be eating your saliva.

5. Only dip bread into the fondue

Yes, another rule often broken by inexperienced fondue-ers. You should not dip potatoes, meat or salad into the fondue. If you do, be ready for an even worse dare than if you drop your bread.

6. At the end, grab an egg and a shot of kirsch 

If you manage to finish the fondue, always leave a little bit of cheese at the end, crack an egg into it and add some kirsch, then mix it all together for a delicious cheesy scrambled egg.

Our favourite fondue restaurants 

So you’ve got the rules, now it’s time to try! Here are a few of our favourite places to sample some of the best fondues in the French Alps…

La Plagne

In La Plagne, La Marmotte Qui Fume in Aime 2000, is a great cosy restaurant with beautiful views of the resort. They work with a local cheese supplier and offer a selection of delicious Savoyarde fondues. Psst, my favourite is the cepe.

Val d'Isère

If you are travelling to Val d’Isère get ready for the Fondue Factory, a restaurant specialising in just fondues! From traditional recipes to creative takes on the classic dish, you’ll find a wide variety of fondues that will tantalise your taste buds.


When in Courchevel you must try the fondue at the restaurant Le Petit Savoyard at the Ferme d’Ariondaz in Moriond (1650). You’ll be able to savour all flavours of the French mountains in this traditional warm and rustic setting.


La Fromagerie in Meribel is said to be one of the best places to go for fondue while holidaying in the Three Valleys. A traditional 40-year-old creamery, they adapted their cellar into a restaurant allowing them to showcase their delicious cheeses… and their fondue is known to be super rich in flavour!


In Tignes La Ferme des Trois Capucines is a super choice and often fully booked, so make sure you reserve in advance. It’s a real working farm which specialises in cheese. Their fondues are incredible and they even have their own speciality... a Tomme fondue cooked with cider and served with apple.


Have you ever heard of Les Grands Crus de Fondues? This is a luxury fondue experience at the hotel Le M de Megève, one of our fantastic 5-star hotels! A specialist cheesemonger will take you on a tour of cheese heaven to create the perfect fondue for you. You will choose from a selection of the best cheeses from the region, and this time it is ok to dip something other than just bread into your fondue without having to do the dare.

Le Grand Bornand

In Le Grand Bornand, Le Chalet Venay will delight fondue fans. You can even team up the cheese experience with one of our Oxygene Moonlight evening snowshoe walks. Interested? Contact us for more information.

Serre Chevalier

One of the best fondues in Serre Chevalier can be found at Le Refuge in the heart of the old town. It’s going to be a hard choice to choose between a traditional Savoyard, a morel mushroom one or even one with truffles.

We hope, you’ve enjoyed this cheese fondue adventure. To finish off we’re going to let you into an easy Alpine fondue recipe you can do at home, but be warned, it'll never be as good as the restaurants above. So make sure you book your holiday with OSC this winter and taste the real deal…


  • 1 garlic clove, cut in half
  • 350ml of Savoyard white wine
  • 700g of grated beaufort, comté, abondance cheese (or if you like you can add some reblochon)
  • 1 or 2 stale baguettes cut into mouth size chunks 
  • Nutmeg
  • Ground pepper


  1. Put the fondue pan on a medium heat. 
  2. Rub the halved garlic all over the inside of the pan.
  3. Add the wine and grated cheese and mix well with a wooden spoon until the mixture is smooth.
  4. Add some nutmeg and ground pepper.
  5. Cook for another 5 minutes, not forgetting to stir.
  6. Then it’s ready!
  7. Place it on the table fondue stand and get dipping
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