The Matterhorn is no doubt the number one attraction in Zermatt Switzerland, with a few other Swiss Alps mountain peaks following close behind, but the town of Zermatt offers more than just easy access to the Matterhorn. There are plenty of other things in Zermatt that you can choose to see or do, but one thing that is more than just a choice, but rather a necessity, also offers some exciting experiences too. Dining in any foreign place is always an experience and Zermatt offers a lot of options, which translates to a lot of different experiences. In this small ski resort town you will find a wide variety of restaurants serving everything from popular international favorites to simple local flavors. And while you will surely want your dining experiences while you are in Zermatt to consist of variety, it goes without saying that you must also experience the local cuisine as part of your holiday dining. There are many restaurants that serve the local favorites, some right in the town and within easy access to most Zermatt hotels, and some located a little further into the mountains, which offers a very unique dining experience. There are a few of these restaurants in particular, though, that are very popular for the Swiss specialties that they serve.
- StafelALP – StafelALP offers a very unique dining experience, in a number of ways, some that do not necessarily involve the food. For one thing, the views from both the indoor as well as the outdoor seating arrangements in this restaurant are nothing short of breathtaking. The way the restaurant is situated leaves you surrounded by the magnificent Swiss Alps. And the décor of the restaurant is simple and a bit rustic while at the same time somewhat sophisticated as well. You will find both modern details in addition to a local flair, such as fur covered seats and the charming wooden bar. Of course the most important thing other than the atmosphere in any restaurant, though, is the food that is served there, and StafelALP has it right on the money here as well. The restaurant offers up a number of delicious Swiss specialties. Some of the most popular including the Shepherd Pasta, which consists of lamb tongue, pasta, spring onions, and cherry tomatoes, the Bison Rib-Eye w/ Jack Daniel's sauce, herb butter, and pineapple-curry mustard served on a hot stone, the StafelALP “Matterhorn” Burger, which includes cherry tomato, red onions, rocket salad, alpine herb sauce, and goat cheese piled high in herb focaccia bread, and, of course something that every Swiss cuisine serving restaurant must have, the Swiss cheese fondue, which here you will find is made with alpine herbs and served with both bread and boiled potatoes. These dishes plus so many more make this the perfect restaurant to experience Swiss cuisine.
- Alpenrose – The interior of the Alpenrose restaurant is truly one of a kind, with a laid-back casual feel, even though it could surely be classified as fine dining. And in addition to the great views inside there are stunning views outside as well. This is another great mountain restaurant with sweeping views of the surrounding Swiss Alps, and in warmer months you even have the option of dining on an outdoor terrace where the views are even more breathtaking. And to top it all off, this is one of the more affordable restaurants that you have to choose from during your stay in Zermatt. The restaurant is located within a hotel as well, so you if you find that you really enjoy the view and the food you might even consider it as a place to stay as well on your next journey to Zermatt Switzerland. For now, though, if you make it out to the restaurant at least, some of the Swiss specialties that you might want to try include the Valaisan Pork, the Hash Brown Potatoes, the Veal Bratwursts, the Beef Goulash Soup, and of course, none other than the cheese fondue. And if you are really feeling like a Swiss dining experience, you can even grill your own meat skewers right at your table, an experience unique to the Alpenrose. Some of these dishes can be found in other local restaurants right in town, but if you are looking for an adventure and a good meal, this is a great place to get both.
- Othmar's Skihuette – Although Othmar's Skihuette is only open during the months of December through February it is a restaurant worth mentioning, because if you do go during this time it is an excellent choice. The restaurant is located in the mountains, and getting there and back offers a unique experience all its own. Visitors to the restaurant have the option of taking a lift up past where the restaurant is and then renting a toboggan to take down the mountain to where the restaurant is located. After dining visitors can then continue down the mountain in their toboggan to the town of Zermatt if that is where they are staying. The combined experience of tobogganing and dining on the great food served at Othmar's Skihuette makes for a one-of-a-kind adventure during your stay. And the family-owned restaurant atmosphere only adds to the entire experience. Some of the best dishes to try at Othmar's include any of the Alaskan Salmon dishes, the Hash Browns w/ Cheese, Bacon, and Fired Eggs, the Raclette, the Sausages w/ Sauerkraut and Potatoes, and the Salmon Cordon Bleu. Although some of these dishes are not necessarily considered Swiss, they are a great way to get a little variety during your trip.
- Fluhalp – Last but not least, located in a secluded spot amidst the Swiss Alps, is the Fluhalp restaurant. This restaurant is also only open during the winter skiing season, but if you are visiting during this time it is one of your many great options. The views of the Matterhorn from the outdoor terrace of the restaurant are one-of-a-kind, and reason enough alone to choose this particular restaurant, and the food is excellent too. In fact, Fluhalp has actually been deemed by some critics as one of the best restaurants in the entire town of Zermatt. Add to that the fact that there is live music on certain days and a trip to Fluhalp ends up being a wonderfully diverse experience. And the prices of the food are nothing to be weary of either. Some of the Swiss specialties that you might want to try if you visit the Fluhalp restaurant include the Hash Browns(or Rosti), the Potato Soup, the Filet of Lamb Salad, the Fondue, and (if you are looking for something on the sweeter side) the Chocolate Cake. You may have to visit during a certain time of year to catch this restaurant open, but if you do it will be well worth your time to visit it.
There are plenty of places to dine in Zermatt that offer Swiss specialties, both in and around town. For the best Swiss cuisine experience during your stay a variety of all different types of restaurants is the way to go, and your dining experience should definitely include a restaurant located in the mountains such as one of these, as this type of variety is what will truly make your stay in Zermatt a memorable experience.