Nothing changes in Wengen

12th March 2014, by Dave Watts

Possibly the best rösti in the world

Possibly the best rösti in the world

Around 30 years ago Editors Watts and Gill lunched at the Jungfrau hotel at Wengernalp and pronounced the rösti with gorgonzola and fried egg the best rösti in the Alps. We offered a credit card to pay the bill but it was rejected – ‘cash only’, they said. While considering offering to do the washing up, fortuitously a work mate of ours appeared out of the blue and lent us the cash to pay.

Yesterday I returned there and the same rösti was still on the menu – and as delicious as ever. And the place is still strictly cash only; highly old fashioned for a restaurant where most lunch bills will be £30 plus a head. And the views were, of course, still the same – stunning vistas of the huge Jungfrau massif with its tumbling glaciers, and the Eiger. The weather was also stunning – clear blue skies and temperatures approaching 10ºC – but the snow was still good on piste until 2pm or so. Off-piste looked lethal, with avalanches tumbling down with huge force and noise.

But I had a great day cruising Wengen‘s intermediate pistes, which were surprisingly crowded for low season March. The cable car out of town (a quicker alternative to the ancient cog railway ride) had queues of 20 minutes until 11am or so and the chairs on the mountain mostly had queues of around five minutes.

But the visitors clearly enjoyed it (as I did) and many were regular visitors and had been visiting for years. The average age was much higher than you see in places like Val d’Isère and Méribel and even higher than Zermatt. Seeing people over 60 on the piste was the norm rather than unusual. Editor Gill and I are not revealing our ages but I felt quite at home.

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