It was a Splendid Saturday in Chamonix, France. Surrounded by the Alps, Chamonix is an extreme town in many ways, it is surrounded with extremely tall, picturesque mountains, it is filled with extreme alpinists, the food is extremely hearty, and the spirit is extremely free and friendly.
As I spent the day in the village, I couldn’t stop looking up at the mountains and thinking of the day before.
On Friday, we took on the challange of the famous, Vallée Blanche, a 20 km run, through a stunning glacier setting. To get to this run, one must take a gondola from Chamonix to the top of the Aiguille du Midi (3842 m.), a place they call entre ciel et terre (between heaven and earth). Many travel up to this spire simply to enjoy the 5 outdoor terraces, a snack and the 360 degree view of the mountains. On a clear day you can see the highest peaks of the French, Swiss and Italian Alps.
If you don’t return to the village on the gondola, the only options are to climb or ski down. We opted to ski. The Vallée Blanche run starts with a long, icy path, lined with a guard rope. We wore harnesses and were roped to our guide as we slowly made our way down this slick walkway to the skiiable area.
The breakfast radishes make me want to run to the bakery for some bread, butter and salt.
Salade Nicoise, anyone??
There were bowls, and bowls of olives. How nice to have little olive trees to use for display.
I would have chosen the green olives with the Herbes de Provence.
The wheels of fromage were endless,
as was the charcuterie.
The sealed, smoked filet mignons were very tempting.
Hearty hunks of procuitto.
We’re far from the sea, but the oysters packed in seaweed looked very fresh.
Slabs of nougat are cut and sold by weight.
Pots of Muscari to garnish the table.
Outdoors at the Brasserie L’M, “La plus belle terrasse, au centre de Chamonix“, a salad Savoyardes with tender lettuces, lardons, gruyere cheese and topped with a poached egg was the perfect post~market lunch.
As I continued to marvel at the mountains.