It's been years since I've sat down for a dining experience at The Melting Pot, but I did just that with a group of fellow food writers and enthusiasts last week to check out the fondue restaurant's new tabletop grilling feature.
The Melting Pot is known for its interactive dining around bubbling cauldrons of goodness, which famously includes decadent melted cheese accompanied by a tray of crudité, bread, and apples for dipping. That's precisely where we began the evening.
|Mixing the cheese for our first course|
Before mixing and stretching for effect, a sprinkling of black pepper and black truffle salt was added. Our server kept a close eye on temperature to ensure the cheese maintained the appropriate texture and level of heat; no rooftop burns thank you. It was delightfully good and hard to stop eatting, especially with the chunks of pretzel bread. The next day had me thinking about the unlimited cheese and chocolate fondue offered at the bar for happy hour...hmmmmm.
After a fresh salad with strawberries and goat cheese, a cast iron grill was placed on the burner in the middle of the table for the debut of the new cooking style. We had an entree combination course of garlic pepper angus sirloin, peppercorn filet, and sweet and spicy shrimp.
|Steak and shrimp seasoned and ready for the grill|
|Tabletop grilling in progress|
When we flipped over the mushroom caps, we filled them with green goddess for a flavorful treat. The cooking time was quick, except for the vegetables, and placing only a couple of protein items on the grill at a time ensured they stayed the optimal temperature for eating.
Traditionally, guests at The Melting Pot choose between fondue pots filled with various broths and oils for cooking vegetables and meats. While it's not fondue, there is something about the grill that is fun to watch and feels healthful. It did get a little smoky for us at one point and our server adjusted the grill temperature to help.
The last of the four course dining experience was the famous dessert fondue. The menu has a number of options or you can create your own combination. Ours was White Chocolate Strawberries Foster.
|A dash of cinnamon adds sparks to the White Chocolate Strawberries Foster Fondue.|
One of my favorite things about dining here is that things are not rushed. It's a place that fosters conversation, it's fun, it's romantic, it's whatever you want it to be. And the best part, the food is fresh and good.