Updated: May 21, 2015
Review of the Melting Pot - A Fondue Restaurant:I recently took a trip into downtown Portland and had dinner at the Melting Pot restaurant - a quality fondue style dining experience. The Melting Pot is actually a chain of fondue restaurants but we are lucky enough to have one here in Portland, Oregon. If you have never experienced a fondue meal, you definitely need to do it once in your life. It's best with a group environment so we suggest getting another couple to go with and share the food with them. At the Melting Pot you actually cook your main meal by dipping the meats, fish, poultry, etc. into a cooking broth. The first course is a cheese fondue where you are able to dip bread and vegetables into the pot of melted cheese. We went with the "Big Night Out" which is the way to go if you can eat enough. We did the traditional swiss cheese fondue which was very tasty and a great start to the evening.
You also get a salad, so remember to save room for the dinner and the yummy dessert they have. The entree cooking styles included Coq au Vin, Court Bouillon, Bourguignonne, and their Mojo Style. Each person is given 2 skewers so they can dip in a few pieces of food at a time into the fondue pot. The cheese portion really only requires a single dip at a time, but when it comes to cooking your raw meats, it's good to have 2 things cooking at once to speed up the process. During the entree portion, you have multiple skewers in the boiling pot. The skewers all have a different color code to them so don't worry about accidentally taking back someone elses. It only takes a few minutes to cook items like filet mignon and chicken so it goes fast. When you have 2 skewers going at once then you can sit back and eat was has been cooked while the others are in the pot. The restaurant provides a variety of sauces to dip your meat into once it is cooked. Everything is very good and it's hard to make it through the entree without feeling a little full. I was fortunate enough to live in a small town called Saratoga, in California. Saratoga has one of the best fondue restaurants in the country at a place called La Fondue on Big Basin Way in downtown Saratoga. That was my only other fondue experience to compare the Melting Pot to. La Fondue is probably better in many ways (better variety of meats, etc.), but the ambiance is worth something and Melting Pot does an excellent job of making everyone feel welcome and they walk you through the unique dining style of fondue step by step. It can take a while for newbies to order since the menu choices can be a bit overwhelming and you may wonder "what should I get". Don't worry as the waiter will guide you to the best selections and help you understand the different cooking methods. Above all, save room for the dessert - the chocolate fondue. It's an incredible feast of strawberries, bananas, cheesecake, marshmallows, brownies, etc. all dipped in chocolate or eaten by themselves. You will leave the Melting Pot full and satisfied. It's a bit pricey, I think we paid about $140 per couple (that's including a cocktail and some wine). In terms of memories, it's one of those meals that's hard to forget since it was so much fun. I will definitely go back, but it's not the type of meal you can have every week. Their website is online at Meltingpot.com and on it they list locations, menus, you can book reservations online, get phone numbers, and more. Very thorough website and worth looking at before you go to get an idea on how the food is ordered.