San Diego

Pot Pleasures: Where To Do Fondue

Jan 6th 2011 4:30PM / by Nanette Wiser

Historic dishes are all the rage but nothing says the '60s like fondue. If you like cheese for dinner and chocolate for dessert, and want to play with your food, what's more satisfying than skewering your beef or bread in a bubbling mini-cauldron of broth or fromage? Traditionally a Swiss dish made with Emmentaler or Gruyere cheese melted in a tangy white wine/cherry brandy hotpot, this peasant meal became an overnight sensation in the Big Apple circa 1964. Enjoy the romance of this throwback cuisine, made modern with seafood and other gourmet goodies. Go-go boots, optional.

Brigantine: On a winter's day, there's nothing better than bellying up to the horseshoe bar in this cozy seafood haven and dipping your garlic toast into crab and shrimp fondue, an app best matched with the Brig oysters, topped with red crab and baked with jalapeño cream sauce.
1333 Orange Ave., Coronado; 619-435-4166 (check website for other locations)

Confidential: Spectacular modern interior, sexy red lighting, tapas under $9 and a tender beef tenderloin skewer dipped in gorgonzola fondue and port wine triumph, as do the bacon-wrapped dates and filet mignon bites at Confidential.
901 4th Ave., Downtown; 619-696-8888

Forever Fondue: San Diego's original fondue spot. Dip herby crusts, tart Granny apples and veggies into cheddar and smoked gouda, Camembert and Swiss, Baja Queso, blue cheese cheddar or cheesy lobster bisque. Save room for strawberries bathed in dark chocolate crunch butterfinger fondue. It's sinful.
909 Prospect St., La Jolla 858-551-4509

Karl Strauss Brewery & Restaurants: At the original small but beautiful alehouse, you can enjoy Black Garlic Fondue -- gobs of Cambozola cheese, herbed Red Trolley beer sauce, sautéed peppers, black garlic cloves accompanied by savory herbed bread. Magical, especially when paired with the bite of Tower 10 IPA.
1157 Columbia St, Little Italy; 619-234-2739 (check website for other locations)

The Melting Pot: Top cow in the ooey gooey cheese wars, The Melting Pot offers a memorable experience, from the attentive service and fine wines to the beyond-traditional dishes: Fontina, Butterkase and blue cheese with white wine, scallions and sherry; spicy beer jalapeño cheddar cheese and spinach artichoke garlic cheese blends to the table d'hôte land and sea presentations, cooked in coq au vin, bourguignonne, mojo, ginger plum or gorgonzola port style sauces. Kiss your diet away at dessert by dipping strawberries, bananas, Rice Krispies Treats, pound cake and brownies into milk chocolate swirled with peanut butter or Amaretto white chocolate.
901 5th Ave., Downtown; 619-234-5554 (check website for other locations)

Photo courtesy of The Melting Pot

Favorite Hotels
The Pearl Hotel
Hotel del Coronado
1906 Lodge on Coronado
The Cosmopolitan Hotel
Andaz San Diego
Paradies Point Spa & Resort
Hotel Indigo San Diego
Hilton San Diego Bayfront
The Se San Diego
Porto Vista Hotel & Suites
The Grand Del Mar
Temecula Creek Inn

Everywhere Else
Anna Maria Beach Cottages
Epic Hotel Miami
Los Cabos Resort
Crystal River, Florida
Sanibel Beach Resort, Florida
Sonoma Mission Inn

Upcoming Events
San Diego Beer Week
The Old Globe Theater
Newport Jazz Festival
Clearwater Jazz Festiva