The Pyeongchang Winter Olympics have been an array of glittery figure skating, the “Roaring Game” of curling (and its trousers), and our favourite high-octane skiing and snowboarding events.
An integral part of manoeuvring the snowy mountains, though, is what happens when the skis or board come off, which isn’t athlete-appropriate. For those not trying to win a gold medal for their country, here’s a quick A to… E of the rowdy business of après-ski. And for those of you who don’t ski or board, you don’t have to. Après is for anyone.
Nothing works up quite as much of an Appetite as slogging through powder and bombing down tree-runs. Carb up on bowls of pasta, share nachos and wings, or go Alpine with artery-clogging raclette and fondue. You’ll regret it later if you don’t, because altitude lowers your tolerance enough without adding an empty stomach to the mix.
17-year-old gold medallist and Team USA darling Chloe Kim sums up the need for a good feed in her snack-centric tweets that led NBC’s correspondent for food and culture David Chang to meet her at the finish line with a churro ice-cream sandwich.
Choose your Booze: Vin chaud in the Alps. Sake or whisky in Japan. Jugs of Bloody Caesars or Molson in Canada. Ubiquitous hot toddies and Irish coffee. The choices are endless, but few things keep the cold at bay like a good alcohol-jacket.
Afternoon will segue into evening then the early hours. At a resort where the après spots are on the hill, make sure you have pre-planned your way home. Don’t drink and ride.
Carry Cash Many places won’t take card, and also this way you won’t buy rounds of shot-skis for everyone in the bar.
Dress the part. Rock up in your ski gear, but make sure you’ve layered up so you can adjust. While the slopes can be frigid, you’ll roast once you’re inside with the heating cranked. European après involves a lot of outside partying at places like La Folie Douce, which means dancing on picnic tables and a club-like atmosphere where you’ll quickly warm up.
Even at more low-key locales, don’t be held back by bulky garms. Snow pants are fine but ditch the jacket, and if you’re a skier, throw a pair of sneakers into your backpack so you can switch out those clunky boots.
Enjoy! Let loose and have fun. That’s what you’re there for.