The 8 best places for après-ski in Europe

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Après-ski is a loaded term, which, when mispronounced, makes one shiver ski veterans and those whose post-track form has gone from jaeger-soaked terraces and boot-stomping to steam room or hot-shock-and-Titanic. But they were complicit, once joining the ap-ray (winces) crowd with half-skinned overalls, smudged mascara and wild abandon. What started in the 1950s as a French term for “socializing after skiing” quickly turned into a tradition in its own right, with boyish trimmings but ultimately a bit of harmless (and sometimes heavy) fun after a tough day of skiing. The Scandinavians have their sauna and fika version of the ritual, the Americans have strict rules about drinking alcohol on the slopes that get in the way of most high-altitude revelry, and the Italians tend to shower first and party later. So there remains a British import – one of the Austrians and French prefer to steer their post-track culture away from mulled wine or beer – but one that draws inspiration from each station’s unspoken identity and codes. From high-altitude cabarets on sunny terraces to low-key institutions warming patrons with mulled wine and live music, here’s our guide to the best après-ski in Europe.

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