Skicool had arranged for us to have dinner at the gorgeous seafood restaurant Murtaröl just 13 minutes drive from St. Moritz on the Lake Silsersee. The building dates back to 1880 but was bought by the family in 1951 and eventually converted to the restaurant that it is today back in 1982. Antonio Walther has run the restaurant all of this time and the doors have been open every day since, serving the finest seafood to its guests and we were lucky enough to be the next guests to walk through the door. Antonio is quite a character and we received a lovely welcome as we entered the restaurant. He showed us through the restaurant to our table and told us a little about the place. The seafood and freshwater fish are sourced daily from all over the world via the fish markets of Milan and his produce is of such top quality that he also supplies many of the top hotels in the Engadin area. On the menu are such delights as Oysters of various sizes and provinces, crustaceans and mollusks to every type of fish.
We were then shown through the kitchens to the very heart of the restaurant, to the Pescheria where we could view and select all manors of live fish and crustaceans, from giant lobsters to enormous king crabs and the likes of trout and char. One can not get fresher seafood in the Alps. It was fascinating to see the vast selection of aquatic life all in one room. This was going to be an exciting dining experience.
When we came to study the menu, it took a while because there is such a large choice, where does one start? Fear not though, Antonio and the rest of the waiting staff are only too happy to advise. I chose my staple of Tartare made with Tuna served with Gluten free toast and Cheeky went for the Lobster Bisque. My Tuna tartare was delicate and simply delicious whilst Cheeky reported that her Bisque tasted very fresh and very natural.
Antonio recommended that for main course we experience the Fish Fondue. Cheeky and I both love fish and fondue, so this was one experience that we would definitely not want to miss. First the fish broth arrived and the smell was divine, accompanying it were various sauces like curry, tartar and cocktail sauce. Then the fish platter arrived with four selections of fish Salmon, Tuna, Monkfish and Yellowtail with several sides like boiled potatoes, rice and vegetables. Instead of skewers we had little wire baskets that we would lower the fish into the broth with. This became very entertaining as sometimes your fish would go for a swim around the broth and you would have to fish it out with the basket. I am sure Cheeky kept knocking my fish out on purpose so she could claim it under the maritime ‘Law of Salvage’! But as soon as we polished off one platter of fish another arrived. Fondue is always a delightful experience, but we particularly enjoyed cooking our own fish in this fondue. Once we had filled our stomachs with divine fish, our waiters cleared the table and brought back little cups with the fish broth mixed with a little sherry. Cheeky is not so keen on this part of the fondue process, but luckily I love it, so it was double helping time for me most agreeable.
Despite having eaten what felt like a whole tank of fish, miraculously there was still space for dessert. So Cheeky went for her favourite staple of Parfait which today was an Amaretto parfait with cream whilst I chose cinnamon ice cream with plums in red wine. Simple but absolutely delicious and a lovely way to finish off the dinner.
There is a reason that Murtaröl has been open every day since 1983. The restaurant is a success due to Antonio’s passion for fish and all seafood plus he has made the restaurant his life. After eating the usual alpine fair of smoke meats, various cheeses and potatoes for a while, which I do love, sometimes the taste buds crave something different. Murtaröl’s seafood and freshwater fish fulfill this craving in the best possible way, so next time you find yourself in St. Moritz take a trip over to Lake Silsersee and eat your fill at Murtaröl.
Plaun da Lej Resort,
Via dal Malögia 14,
CH 7517 Plaun da Lej