Sunday, 29 March 2015

Adelboden, Switzerland

You may have noticed it's been over a month since I Iast posted anything remotely related to the London dining scene. I'm afraid I'm still out and about. Moreover I've recently ended my 7.5-year relationship with my MacBook, yes that's the black plastic one as seen on Season 1 Sex and the City. And yes a MacBook does last that long, obviously some pretty-pleases and fluttering eyelashes at the Genius Bar helped. This means I have found some good drafts that I never got round to posting... 

But this one is hot off the press - I'm writing this as I sit at the boarding gate on my way back to London. 

There is a list of things I'm trying to get through before end of next month and a ski trip with Cynthia is very much near the top. Without this lab partner I would not have got through the practical exams; she was smart enough to task me with labelling eppendorf tubes, while she dealt with the calculations, actual lab work and ultimately dictated my lab reports... I'm forever thankful for her not losing her shit when I couldn't even label and count from 1-100. I got confused after 75... Anyhow I have much admiration for her and she deserves a proper goodbye before I go. The girl is always a step ahead and moved to Basel in November last year, from there we took a 2.5 hour journey to Adelboden, a cute little Swiss village that serves a good base for skiers.

It's been 6 years since I took the Chan clan here to Switzerland for my graduation trip. Adelboden is slightly off the tourist track, most of whom have been drawn west to Interlaken. Like any other ski town, the main road is lined with chalets and hotels, simple restaurants and bars. After gearing up in town, we took the small cable car across to Oey, and swapped for the gondola lift that took us up to Sillerenbuhl.

The pistes are brilliant:

After a hard day on the slopes, we made full use of the Finnish sauna in the garden, jacuzzi pools and steam room to start the blood flowing through our legs again. So so good....

As Cynthia braved the winds and snow on the slope on the last day, I decided to take the day off. One of the keys to happiness is to accept what you can't do, because there is so much more you can do. It had nothing to do with my aching muscles and bruised bum. *Ahem*. Instead I went on the sunny slope trail  along Hornliweg. Unfortunately sticking to the well signed-posted trail isn't quite my forte, I ended venturing a little further up and a little further out. The 2-hour trek ended up being a 4-hour brisk walk down unmarked paths, snow piles and muddy lanes... Well... Yolo right?

At least the mulled wine at the end of the trek was well-deserved. I don't drink mulled wine in London because it's usually loaded with cinnamon, that awfully intrusive spice. But mulled wine everywhere else tastes completely different. It's sweet with a refreshing citrusy fragrance, spices are gentle on the nose with floral notes, none of that acidic nonsense which resembles boiled off-wines.

Food was surprisingly good. The suisse aren't usually known for their culinary expertise, that said the restaurants we have eaten at proved to be very capable. 

We had a gorgeous cheese fondue recommended by the hotel, just opposite the cable cars to Sillerenbuhl. A very old joint that offers nothing else but variations of the melted cheese pot. We risked stinking of cheese and enjoyed a massive fondue infused with mushrooms, plus a cold meat platter to share. 

The second evening we wanted to try Alte Tavern, but it was fully booked - always a good sign for good food. Alder Restaurant opposite the bus station managed to squeeze us in. An extensive menu with comfort options, made even merrier with super friendly staff.

Thank you for a wonderful weekend, Cynthia. More importantly, thank you for being wonderful.

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