This year, I resolve to put small pieces of food on a stick and cook them in boiling broth.
Inevitably, every conversation about Macon's new fondue restaurant includes the question, "Can a fondue restaurant really make it here?" That answer depends on how adventurous Maconites choose to be and how grateful they are to have something different.
Most of us have at least some history with fondue, either a trip to Atlanta or the sole usage of a wacky aunt's wedding gift. Though you can purchase single courses at Fondue A Dining Experience (yes, the name is cumbersome, but wait), the best idea is to take the time to enjoy the experience of four-course fondue dining (hence the name). Your $82-94 prix fix includes two glasses of beer or wine, cheese fondue course, two salads, enough entre foods for two, and the dessert fondue. Though we had two additional small guests, we were not charged extra since they shared our food for two.
Our meal began with bread cubes, apple slices and vegetables dipped in a cheese concoction created tableside by our server. Instead of going for the swiss, Colby or curry choices, we selected the New World Cheddar, a blend of malt beer, garlic, cayenne and cheddar. It looked a little lumpier than it probably should have been, but the flavor was good and the silliness of dunking our food in cheese was extremely enjoyable. Our two little guests felt like they were getting away with something.
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After the unremarkable salad course, our main entre made the evening. If you prefer, you can create your own main course, with two meats costing $18 or three meats for $22. Add your veggie choices for around $5 each. Instead, we thoroughly enjoyed our pre-designed Seafaring Journey, dipping our raw lobster and shrimp into the boiling hot broth (you can choose peanut oil instead, but why would you?). We skewered our food onto color-coded sticks, creating a memory that will last forever for our little ones. To be honest, their enjoyment of the evening is what pushed a likely two and a half stars up to three. They tried foods they have never touched, just because they got to put it on a stick and cook it themselves.
The last course is everyone's favorite. You can add marshmallow cream, peanut butter or a liqueur, but straight chocolate worked for us. Angel food squares and fruits get dipped into your choice of milk chocolate, white chocolate or dark chocolate for your dessert. We stuffed ourselves with this course and made our dining experience complete.
My advice: make this a special event with your family or another couple, or a romantic dinner for two (maybe for Valentine's Day.) It's not something you will do every week or even every month, but maybe once a season you can plan a fun evening just to cook and eat food on a stick.
That's a resolution I can keep.
Fondue A Dining Experience
3780 Northside Drive
Hours: 4:30-9:30 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday and Sunday, 4:30-10 p.m. Friday and Saturday
Payment: Cash, credit cards
Children's menu: Yes
Vegetarian selections: Yes
Wheelchair accessible: Yes
Noise level: Low
Health code: 100
Price range: $14 for one course for two, or $82 for four courses for two