Celebrating International Women's Day
Mon March 07, 2022
March 8, 2022 is International Women's Day, a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women.
We'd like to take this opportunity to recognise all our female employees and say a HUGE thank you for your hard work and dedication.
We'd also like to introduce you to our wonderful Catering Manager, Harriet, and share some snippets of how she climbed the catering ladder and the adventures she had along the way...
Q - At what age did you realise food and hospitality was your passion?
I was 18 when I was doing my diploma in food and wine, for which I had to complete 6 weeks kitchen work experience. Within 10 minutes of being in my first kitchen job, I realised it was where I wanted to be! 10 minutes after that, I cut through one of my fingers while (badly) chopping onions, the chef wrapped it in blue roll and clingfilm and told me to get on with it. I still wasn't put off!
Q - What brought you to the Alps?
My friend Steve and I found ourselves jobless at the same time, I'd come to the end of a contract and he had just sold his business. We were in the pub mulling over how to do maximum skiing for minimum money when we decided that getting jobs was the best way to do it, with in a fortnight we were in Val with VIPSKI!
Q - What are the highlights of your role as Catering Manager?
This year has been really challenging for all the pandemic reasons but I do get the opportunity to talk to our guests and when they genuinely say how wonderful their holiday is, especially referring to the chalet hosts (and of course the food!) everything is worth it! I love seeing the development of our staff from nervous cooks who take a long time to get out of their chalets each day to confident, efficient, relaxed individuals who are experiencing what will be some of the best months of their lives
Q - Do boys or girls make the best chefs?
Q - You previously worked in a Michelin starred restaurant in France, did the Michelin rating add pressure to the role?
I'm not sure that it did. But I was very young and spent most of my time just trying to get through the day! They only spoke French and my French was terrible - to start with. I think the pressure came from difficult communication - there was no google translate, I had a dictionary!!
Q - Which women in the industry inspire you?
Famous female chefs - I have always been in awe of Angela Hartnett, I have loved all her restaurants, cookbooks and that she usually has a smile plastered across her face! But to be honest, it’s a hard industry to be in so I am inspired by all women who work in it.
Q - Where was your first ski season and what is your favourite memory?
Val d'Isere was my first season, and honestly there are too many favourite memories to list. I mainly remember a feeling of pure happiness, constant excitement, skiing, sunshine, great people and a lot of rosé. I'm not sure I remember working much at all!
Q - Favourite dish to cook?
Anything from the sea.
Q - What’s your favourite ski run?
Epaule du charvet, Val d'isere. I love one last challenge before going home and as I live in ski in ski out accommodation, it takes me right back to my front door, slightly out of breath, happily tired but very revitalized.
Q - Best après ski bar?
Blue Note in Val d'Isere
Q - All-time favourite restaurant in the Alps?
hmmm... any restaurant with a good fondue! I really need to have another one soon! My last fondue was in November - too long ago!
Q - All-time favourite restaurant in the world?
This is such a hard question to answer, because as long as the food is good, the service is friendly and there is enough wine, it really can be anywhere, with the right people. Is that a cop out? because I don't really know how else to answer!!
You can meet Harriet in our ‘outtakes’ video @ 27 seconds...
Calling all #chaletgirls
Any girls out there hoping to work a ski season, our recruitment team will be reviewing CVs in June and we’d love to hear from you.