What can I do in Val d’Isere if I don’t fancy skiing?

March 16th, 2014

Visiting Val d’Isere in the winter months is not only for those keen skiers – there is an endless amount of non-skier activities which provide that adrenaline rush everyone is looking for.

I have recently met up with Roni who works for Evolution 2 in Val d’Isere and Tignes to gain a better insight to the activities they provide around resort from snowshoeing, ice diving to speed riding.

Evo 2’s most popular activity would have to be the Husky rides up in the Manchet valley. Ideal for everyone including young children who can enjoy the family ride, the ride lasts 20 minutes and prices start from €90 for 2 adults – please book on arrival to avoid any disappointment as this is very popular.

Husky

The second most popular activity is ideal for those who are skiing or boarding. If you have ever sky dived or thought about this then this activity is certainly one to consider, taking in those delightful mountain views and lovely fresh air gliding with the birds then a Parapente may be for you. This activity is suitable for beginner skiers and boarders of an intermediate level and for €80 the experience is well worth it.

Parapente

Another activity similar which I have never heard of before I met Roni is the Speedriding. What is this you may ask? This was described to me as ‘the next level of skiing’ for the more advanced skier, you get your own kite and have radio communications with an instructor and is a cross between skiing and paragliding – this is one I think I want to try!! Prices start at €95 for half a day.

speedriding-Argentina

For the non-skiers in the group the Snowshoe walks for half a day would be a great day out on the mountains. Walks are taken on the Solaise/Fornet side of resort through the fresh powder to the lake where a helicopter will come and pick you up (helicopter experience is at an extra cost). Avalanche kits are provided as well as snowshoes and a guide will take you through the mountainous routes and will talk all things mountain and nature related about the area. Group sizes are a minimum of 4 people and prices start at €40 per person.

Snow Shoes

 For those seeking more adrenaline then there are other activities such as the ice circuit in Les Brevieres on the Tignes side with Quad and Buggy rides as well as ice carting. This is a great acticity for groups as well as individuals with rally style driving on offer, a private lesson or a 10 lap tour with 7 cars on offer from Twingo’s to Porsche’s. In Tignes lake you can have an amazing diving experience under the lake and take in the ice features from below the water – described by Roni as a ‘marmite activity’ – you will either love it or hate it! For larger groups the Wilderness experience may appeal to you, groups as small as 2 can book on to this with other groups running on a Wednesday and Thursday night you will be greeted with a kia and soup by the outside fire, treated to a savoyarde dinner with wine followed by a genepi and then a sledging trip down to Tignes Les Brevieres.

For any further information on these activities then please visit Evolution 2’s website and for any interest on booking on arrival please let the Fish&Pips team know and our Val d’Isere Resort Manager can organise this – it couldn’t be simpler.

 

 

 

 

 

An amazing week in Val d’Isere

February 24th, 2014

A quick blog from F&P HQ down in finally dry Devon.  We had the most amazing week in Val d’Isere back in January staying in Santons Solaise and Santons Isere.  Sam, Sherie, Mark and Lex were absolutely fantastic – looking after not the easiest of groups!  One pregnant sister, 4 children 3 and under, 1 non-skiing mother plus the boss!

Our week had everything, snow (lots!) and sun (enough!).  Here are a few of the highlights of the week…

An amazing day skiing to Tignes les Breviere where we met non-skiing mum and pregnant sister and all had a lovely lunch, safe in the knowledge we had cover plenty of km to burn off the calories.  The snow at the top of the Grande Mott on the way over way as perfect as I have ever seen it, they runs in Tignes are lovely big motorways allowing for some hero skiing by us all.

Our nannies - the children had the most fantastic time with Rachel and Pippa from Jelly and Ice Cream.  They  built cardboard box towers, snowmen, been on the bus, been to the farm, been to soft play.. the list is endless and I can honestly say the children really had the best holiday!  Jelly and Ice Cream allowed for flexible hours meaning we could take them swimming some days in the morning, or sledging, and then have time ourselves for a post-ski drink at the Blizzard Hotel (a MUST do in Val d’Isere, their cocktail list is amazing!).

A big birthday bonanza dinner!  I was lucky enough to celebrate my birthday while in Val, and as Holly’s (the Fish) mum also had a birthday to celebrate the team arranged a big birthday for the whole group.  The Fisher clan were staying in Chalet Killy, so on Tuesday night Lex arranged for a big table in Santons Solaise, with the whole team on board, Ben and Amber from Chalet Killy coming to help out, and 15 of us round it, there was a big party atmosphere and a couple of delicious birthday cakes.  Sherie even produced a ‘Dory’ cake (for those not in the know, Dory features in Finding Nemo, which is a current obsession in the Hartley house by those under 3!!)

The F&P team looked after us like royalty.  The food was delicious, the chalets spotless and their company interesting and enjoyable.  My Dad loves hearing stories of Mark’s bike trip round Europe (I think wishing he could do it himself!).

 

Thank you team for another great year!  We look forward to the next…

 

Pips, Jim, Ned, Clemmie and all the family xxx

 

Self Catered… Fish & Pips Style

February 10th, 2014

FANCY SAMPLING OUR DELICIOUS FISH & PIPS GOURMET FOOD WITHOUT PAYING FULL WHACK FOR A CATERED CHALET???

HOW TO DO SELF-CATERED IN STYLE – THE FISH AND PIPS WAY…

Picture this, you have just finished a long day on the hill, you have eaten lunch in one of the not-so-cheap mountain restaurants earlier and now you are just after arriving back to your self-catered chalet after some hard-core dancing in apres-ski. The thoughts of going out to the supermarket to buy in some grub for everyone and then having to cook it too… is this a holiday?!

Wouldn’t it be lovely to arrive home and have a big pot of Beef Bourginon sitting on the hob ready for you to simply heat up, sit back and dig in! Let’s throw in a couple of bottles of fine red wine and hey presto, you’ve got yourself a holiday! With Fish & Pips self-catered chalets, you can have this and more…

You can pre-order home-made meals before you arrive such as Fish Pie, Lasagne, Fajitas, Steak and Ale Pie… the list goes on…

Our prices work out at roughly between €8 and €12.50 per head for a full main course – this price is based on a minimum of 4 people. The cost reduces even further the more people there are – Absolute bargain!!

Anyone who has stayed in Meribel Village before will surely have popped into the fabulous bakery?

How nice would it be for a member of Fish & Pips staff to take your bakery order on a daily basis, and delivery the fresh bread & pastries to your chalet every morning before breakfast? For just €20 for the week, you can avail of this hassle-free service!

It is a well-known fact that the supermarkets up in resort can be quite pricey. If you write us a shopping list, we can do your shopping for you down the mountain and have it all unpacked and ready for you in the chalet before you arrive! Wouldn’t it be nice to arrive to a full fridge after a long day of travelling!

At Fish & Pips we pride ourselves on matching our gourmet food with great wines. The team at Fish & Pips have spent a lot of time with the gentlemen at Le Verre Gourmand, carefully choosing our wine list for the 2013-2014 winter season. You can pre-order as    much of this as you like. Our house red (a smooth Malbec) and white (a refreshingly crisp Ugni) wines start off at just €7.50 a bottle. You can even pre-order beer, vodka or gin from us too.

All in all, our message to you is that even though your chalet is titled a “self-catered chalet” you can still upgrade and enjoy lots of added luxuries for a really great price. What’s not to love?!

 

Liz x

(Self-catered Chalet Manager)

Chalet Tourterelle

Chalet Apartmentt La Ferme

 

 

 

 

 

kitchen

Oven Ready Meals

Holly ties the knot!

September 11th, 2013

Alderney 2013 221

MASSIVE CONGRATULATIONS FROM ALL OF US AT F&P… Don’t worry all, lots more photos to come! Enjoy Sicily the new Mr and Mrs Chandler – hope those feet are up!

New Self Catered Properties!

July 24th, 2013

After the storming success of our self catered apartment La Ferme in Meribel Village last season we have decided to extend our portfolio of self catered options to add a lovely apartment in Val d’isere and a large chalet in Meribel Village.  Both offer the usual F&P staples – proximity to the slopes, amenities, bars and restaurants, a dedicated reservation process with help with ski school, transfers, ski passes and more and in resort care from the F&P teams during your stay.  We also offer a range of self catered upgrades – oven ready meals, a mid week or daily clean, breakfast hampers, set up shop for all your groceries and more, all with the goal of making your self catered holiday all the more hassle free.

For full details of all our self catered properties visit our website www.fishandpips.co.uk

CHALET TOURTERELLE

Chalet Tourterelle is a large self-catered property only a few minutes’ walk from Meribel Village centre and the high speed Golf chair lift. It is a great spot for a self-catered holiday in Meribel.

Come back from skiing, take in the view and make the most of this tranquil setting. Chalet La Tourterelle is located in the heart of Meribel village with all its amenities nearby including a small supermarket, bar and two restaurants, a bus stop with a regular service in to Meribel Centre, what we consider to be the best bakery in the Three Valleys and of course the Golf Chairlift to whisk you away to the ski slopes each day.

The chalet provides generous self-catering accommodation for 10-12 arranged over 3 floors. The entrance hall with under floor heating which is perfect for drying out boots leads into the sitting room. The living area has a piano, lovely log fire, DVD, TV and CD player & ipod dock, two seating areas and a south-facing terrace with stunning views across the Meribel valley. Connected to this is a generous dining area with a table which seats 12, and a modern, spacious, well equipped and efficient kitchen. The top floor has a double bedroom with balcony and en suite bathroom, and 2 twin rooms with a shared bathroom. The bottom floor comprises of one double room, one twin room and a TV room with a sofa bed to sleep an extra two guests, there is an additional separate WC. Skis are stored in the twin garages and there is ample additional parking. It is perfectly arranged for families or other groups.

  • Sleeps up to 10 (plus 2 on a sofabed)
  • Wifi from your laptop
  • Parking spaces available
  • TV with UK Freeview channels
  • Linen & Towels included
  • F&P self-catered upgrades available including oven-ready meals, cleaning, set-up shop
  • F&P Driver service 8am-11am and 4:30pm-8pm daily

APARTMENT PIERRE

This lovely apartment combines convenience with tranquillity in one of the best resorts in the world, Val d’Isère. Apartment Pierre is just a few minutes from shops, supermarkets and bars of the vibrant centre of Val d’Isère The main Solaise and Bellevarde lift are just 6-8 minutes’ walk or a short bus ride away on the frequent Val d’Isère free bus service.

This lovely ground floor apartment consists of 2 large bedrooms, a family shower room and a second family bathroom, ideal for a family of 4 or a small group of friends with its spacious open plan living area. The entrance to the apartment has plenty of storage for all your ski wear, separate WC and family bathroom and leads on to the large open plan living room and kitchen with comfy sofas, a flat screen TV, large dining table and a small kitchen (including full size dishwasher, 4 ring hob, large fridge/freezer, microwave size combination oven and a single sink). From the living room enter in to the master bedroom with a king size bed and ample storage. Proceed downstairs to the second bright and airy bedroom and family shower room with shower, sink, WC, heated towel rail and wall mounted hairdryer. The apartment is located in the Pierre et Vacances residence offers additional facilities for unlimited use by guests. The gym and heated outdoor pool is open daily and the communal area off the reception floor includes a fire place & pool table.

  • Sleeps 4
  • Shared Outdoor pool
  • Gym
  • Wifi from your laptop
  • Covered outdoor parking
  • TV with UK Freeview channels
  • Coin operated laundrette facilities
  • Linen & Towels included
  • F&P self catered upgrades
  • Dedicated service from your Fish & Pips Resort Manager

Chalet Apartment La Ferme

New for F&P last season and very well received by our guests La Ferme is a beautifully appointed apartment in the heart of Meribel Village. A stone’s throw from the high speed Golf chair lift with all the local amenities on your doorstep it’s the perfect spot for a self catered holiday in Meribel.

Come back from skiing, take in the view, relax in the pool and make the most of this tranquil setting. Chalet Apartment La Ferme is located in the heart of Meribel village with all its amenities nearby including a small supermarket, bar and two restaurants, a bus stop with a regular service in to Meribel Centre, what we consider to be the best bakery in the Three Valleys and of course the Golf Chairlift to whisk you away to the ski slopes each day.

The chalet comprises of an open plan kitchen and dining room with comfy sofas, a large South facing balcony with views across to the magnificent Roc de Fer, a well equipped kitchen and WC. Upstairs you will find three comfortable bedrooms (one fully en suite), and two further bathrooms. On the very top floor is a mezzanine with four single beds-ideal for kids with loads of floor space but be aware the head room is limited up there (5’10” at it’s highest).

  • Sleeps 6 plus 4
  • Indoor pool
  • Wifi from your laptop
  • 2 covered parking spaces
  • TV with UK Freeview channels
  • Linen & Towels included
  • F&P self catered upgrades
  • F&P Driver service daily from 8am-11am and 4:30pm-8pm

For information, or to book email Babs at info@fishandpips.com or give us a call on  0845 474 1054.

For pricing and availability have a look at our wesbite www.fishandpips.co.uk/booking

Competition Winners!

May 17th, 2013

Some lovely words from our Facebook competition winners Ben & Bella.

We were more than a bit over-excited when we realised that we had won a week in Val d’Isere in the Fish and Pips Facebook competition but even so, the holiday more than exceeded our expectations- I guess the skiing gods must have been smiling on us! The level of service we received was unlike anything either of us have ever experienced before on catered chalet holidays – from the door to door service – we were met at Geneva by the lovely Mike who entertained us all the way up the mountain!-to the stunning chalet but most of all, the exceptional food; we couldn’t have wished for more! Every day dawned bright and clear and yet the snow stayed perfect until well after lunch so we got plenty of skiing in – probably just as well as the amount we ate needed some serious justification!

I would challenge any food critic used to London’s finest to fault anything Rebecca cooked for us – it was all absolutely delicious and beautifully presented. Every course was exquisite and we were so enthusiastic in attacking it all that we seldom managed any cheese at all, even though the selection was to die for….but I digress! To summarise, the girls catered to our every whim and with eternal good grace, we loved the resort and the conditions were fantastic. We’d be lucky to recreate that week again but we do aim to try! Merci bien F&P

Ben & Bella xx

(p.s. Photos to follow!)

 

 

 

Recipe Of The Week: Rebecca’s Salted Peanut Parfait with Raspberry Jelly & Popcorn

April 21st, 2013

We have reached the final Recipe of the Week of the 2012/2013 season and we are going out with a bang. Rebecca cooked this delight for me the other day and I have got to say it tasted incredible! So I am telling you again to get yourself in the kitchen and give this recipe a whirl!!

Recipe of the week – Salted Peanut Parfait with Raspberry Jelly and Popcorn

Salted Peanut Parfait

100g smooth peanut butter

75ml double cream

4 egg yolks

45g caster sugar

150ml double cream

 

Raspberry Jelly

200g frozen or fresh raspberries

20g caster sugar

1 small sheet of gelatine

 

Peanut Praline

50g sugar

50g water

Handful of peanuts

 

Popcorn

50g salted butter

2 big handfuls popping corn

 

  1. For the parfait, whisk together peanut butter and double cream to a smooth paste. Place the eggs yolks and sugar in a glass bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and using an electric whisk to create a sabayon (the mixture leaves a trail). Take off the heat and whisk until cool
  2. Whisk the double cream to soft peaks and fold into the egg mixture, followed by the peanut butter mixture. Pour into dario moulds or a lined loaf tin and freeze for 4-6 hours
  3. For the jelly, place the raspberries and sugar into a glass bowl over simmering water. Cover with cling film and leave for 1 hour for the juice to bleed out the fruit. Strain the mix through a sieve to remove the seeds. Soften the gelatine in cold water for 5mins. Heat the remaining liquid and add the soften gelatine to dissolve. Strain, and pour into a madeleine mould. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours.
  4. For the praline, make a caramel by rapidily boiling the sugar and water to achieve a caramel. Warm the peanuts in a medium oven for 2 or 3 mins then add to the caramel ensuring the peanuts are evenly coated. Pour into an oiled tray until set and then blitz in a food processor. Keep frozen for up to 2 weeks
  5. For the popcorn, melted the butter in a large pan over a medium heat. Increase the heat and add the popping corn. Place a lid on until all the popcorn has popped, shaking the pan occasionally.
  6. To place up, use a pastry brush to paint melted chocolate on the plate, add a line of praline, jelly, popcorn and unmould the parfait with a warm knife.

644760_10152779631695265_1548413244_n

Enjoy everyone!!

Holly R x

The End’s Not Near, It’s Here!!

April 21st, 2013

I cannot believe we have already reached the end of another season, and what a season it has been . . . . .

The team arrived in Val d’Isere asking where all the snow was. It was only a week until our first guests arrived and they all looked a bit worried.

604099_10151481972206508_1220958350_n

They were quickly told to relax, the snow would come like it always does. So training commenced and they were taught everything there is to know about working in a chalet. Soon enough, as we promised, the snow started to fall.

923385_10151382368315911_891897489_n

And it continued for the next 5 months. I am sure those who have visited the Alps this season will agree that we have had some pretty amazing snow this year. All the team have been out on the slopes in force, whether beginner, park rat or powder lover we have all come on a lot this year.

Fiona Taylor

Fiona Taylor

Gareth Stevens

Gareth Stevens

 

Holly Richardson

Holly Richardson

Rebecca Anderson

Rebecca Anderson

 

Before we knew it we were already half way through the season. With everyone in their routine everything in Val d’Isere was running smoothly and everyone was happy. Then things got a little bit odd . . .

I came home to find Daisy dressed as a tiger and Gareth dressed as a penguin, apparently they just fancied a change!

Animal Maddness

Animal Maddness

This led to a series of changes starting with Daisy trying out snowboarding and finishing with me having a go on a monoski.

Daisy having a well deserved 'rest'!

Daisy having a well deserved ‘rest’!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Holly R and Becky Palmer (Snowberry) rocking the Monoski!

Holly R and Becky Palmer (Snowberry) rocking the Monoski!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So somehow we managed to make it to the end of the season. With last guests leaving we woke up to start the final clean and shut down of the chalets. On opening the curtains we all thought we had slept through summer and woken up in December 2013 as 1 metre of snow had fallen overnight!!

563788_10151382345460911_603871247_n

Unfortunately with very little time and lots to do we were unable to get up the hill to enjoy the fresh powder. Instead we got our rubber gloves on and toothbrushes out the start shutting down the chalets.

Ash doing a great job of the radiator

Fi doing a great job polishing the shower

Fi doing a great job polishing the shower

Daisy not looking so happy in hers!!

Daisy not looking so happy in hers!!

It is good job Fish & Pips have some trusty friends who managed to get up the hill in the fresh powder to show us all skiing is definitely not over in April!

Guy Coles (New Generation) photographed by Tim Blake (Snowberry)

Guy Coles (New Generation) photographed by Tim Blake (Snowberry)

 

Julian Ball (Pro-Skier) photographed by Tim Blake (Snowberry)

Julian Ball (Pro-Skier) photographed by Tim Blake (Snowberry)

 

Now we have reached the end I would like to say a big thank you to all the wonderful guests we have had this year, our suppliers who have been with us every step of the way and of course my fabulous team. Fiona, Daisy, Rebecca, Gareth and Ash have made this season run so smoothly and I know I couldn’t have made it here without them. We can all go home now tired but very very happy.

Holly R

Holly R

We hope to see you all in Val d’Isere next year!

Lots of Love

Holly R xxx

Recipe of the Week – Gareth’s Lemon Trio

April 12th, 2013

The end of the ski season is coming around very fast. The temperature is rising so we thought you might like to try this extremely refreshing pudding created by our very own chef in Santons Solaise, the lovely Gareth. You should definitely give this one a go, you will not regret it!

Lemon Trio

Posset

350ml Double Cream

125g Caster Sugar

3 Lemons, juiced

Pour the cream and sugar into a pan. Slowly bring to the boil stirring constantly to dissolve the sugar. Once bubbling keep stirring on the heat for 4 minutes then remove the pan from the heat and gradually stir in the lemon juice, the mixture should thicken instantly. Taste the mixture and add more lemon if needed. Cool for 5 minutes then pour into shot glasses.

Lemon Shortbread

125g Butter, softened

50g Golden Caster Sugar

125g Plain Flour

65g Cornflour

Zest of 2 Lemons

Preheat the oven to 170°C. Cream the butter and sugar together and gradually add the 2 flours and lemon zest. Knead the dough together and then chill in the fridge for 30 minutes. Roll the dough to a thickness of 1cm and cut into circles then bake on a baking sheet for 15 minutes.

Lemon Sorbet

500g Caster Sugar

250ml Lemon juice

1 Lemons, zested

Put the sugar in a pan with 750ml water and heat gently until the sugar has dissolved. Simmer for a couple of minutes then stir in the  lemon juice and zest then leave to cool. Churn the liquid in an ice cream machine to  sorbet consistency.

Put the 3 element together as shown below and serve with some spun sugar.

Enjoy!

529560_10151839393648275_150475137_n (2)

 

Recipe of the Week: Ash’s Crispy Sole with Crayfish Sauce

March 26th, 2013

If you are a fish fan then you will love this dish created by the lovely Ash, chef in Santons Isere in Val d’Isere. Why don’t you get in the kitchen this week and give this a go . . . . .

Crispy Sole with a crayfish sauce

To feed 4

Ingredients

4 x fillets of sole

4 x slices of white bread

Crayfish tails

Splash white wine

Splash white wine vinegar

4 x shallots

Thyme

Cucumber

Dill

Butter

Method

1.       Preheat the oven at 180 degrees

2.      De bone the fish

3.      Roll the bread until it is thin, approximately 3mm

4.      Lay the fish onto the bread and cut to size

5.      Brush the bread with melted butter, then on a medium heat pan fry until golden

6.      Place on grease proof paper on a baking tray, bread side down, and bake for 4 minutes

7.      Sweat the shallots and thyme and add the vinegar

8.      Cube the butter and whisk into the hot pan – continue whisking

9.     Add the crayfish tails and cucumber

10.   Pour the sauce over the fish

IMG-20130324-00128