Tag Archives: fondue

Fifty Pounds of Cheese

On Wednesday March 30, passport in hand, our intrepid MELTers traveled through the raclette rivers and fondue forests to visit each of our five amazing cheese stations. First stop? The accompaniments table! A veritable cornucopia of mouthwatering treats from homemade pretzel bites to Gordy’s pickles, to a selection of our favorite charcuterie, this table featured something special for everyone (and every cheese).

Passport to Cheese

Choosing Accompaniments

Next, our fearless cheese fiends found sanctuary in a down-home Midwestern favorite: Wisconsin Cheese Curds. These ooey-gooey, deep fried pieces of heaven were an instant classic–especially when paired with Chef Johanna’s homemade marinara! Don’t just take our word for it though, stop by Spritz O’Clock soon to taste these mini marvels for yourself.

Wisconsin Cheese Curds

Further into the cafe, our daring patrons were treated to the dazzling spectacle (and mouthwatering aroma) of raclette being melted to order. When paired with Gordy’s Pickles and starchy potatoes, this station was a #MELTy indulgence beyond compare. For those of you looking to recreate this moment at home, stop by and pick up a Partyclette machine from our cheesemonger and be the host with the most at your next dinner party.

Enjoying Plates of Raclette

Before following the scent of cheesy goodness upstairs, our noshing nomads made a quick stop in the wine room for a triumphant taste of American Pub cheese. This beer based bite of bliss paired perfectly with the Port City Porter and Chef Johanna’s homemade pretzel bites. Pretzels, porter, and pub cheese? What more could a party provide?!

Dipping into American Fondue

The answer to that question lay waiting for patrons upstairs in our laboratorio where Chiara was serving an Italian Fonduta over perfectly toasted baguette. This truffle infused #MELTy masterpiece was clearly a crowd favorite, as it was the first to disappear. Fortunately, Federico came to the rescue and delighted our dauntless diners with handmade cheese ravioli. For those who missed it, he will be hosting an encore pasta performance in the Cafe every day at lunchtime.

Italian Fonduta Station

Last, but certainly not least, our gallant and engorged guests found themselves faced with a meal of mountainous proportions…or at least flavors. The Alpine Fondue station, featuring smooth, garlicky, Swiss flavors had everyone yodeling for more.

Bill at the Alpine Fondue Station

We would like to say a special Thank You to all of our courageous cheese connoisseurs for making this event such a success. We went through fifty pounds of cheese, but our cheese counter is still stocked! For those of you who weren’t able to attend (or want to relive the night), we have a special treat: visit our cheese counter and take home a fondue kit, specially curated by in-house Cheesemonger Alice Bergen Phillips and make a little #MELTed magic of your own.

Mini Fondue Kits

A MELT Retrospective Read more

On Wednesday March 30, passport in hand, our intrepid MELTers traveled through the raclette rivers and fondue forests to visit each of ...

Just Fondue It

Here at Via Umbria, we’re more than fond of fondue. Cheese is amazing any way you slice it, but something inexplicably delicious happens when you add a little melt to the mix. On March 30th, we will be throwing a Fondue Fest to celebrate all things melty and cheesy. Here’s a taste of what we’re serving up!

FONDUE. Named Switzerland’s national dish, this delicious way of eating melted cheese has been adopted by much of the world. “Fondu,” the past participle of the French verb “fondre,” means melted. To keep fondue true to its name, a candle must be placed beneath the fondue pot to ensure the cheese remains in liquid form. Long forks are then used to dip bread or vegetables into the pot. Simple, cheesy, and amazing! Our party will take a look at three different sorts of fondue: the Alpine classic, made with Swiss cheese and white wine; Fonduta, an Italian-style fondue made with Fontina and truffles; and American pub cheese, a beer-and-cheese combo traditionally served with soft pretzels.

 

A candle keeps classic fondue at the perfect consistency.
A candle keeps classic fondue at the perfect consistency.

RACLETTE. Another Swiss cheesy treat. Raclette is one of my absolute favorite ways to consume melted cheese. Derived from the french word racler, meaning “to scrape”, Raclette is both the name of the cheese itself and the dish it’s used for. Traditionally, half a wheel of Raclette is heated in front of a fire, and then the melted part of the wheel is scraped off over boiled or roasted potatoes. In lieu of an actual fire, we’ll be using a Raclette machine to melt our amazing Swiss Raclette over potatoes (or potato chips, if you prefer a bit more crunch).

 

Raclette has an inviting, aromatic scent. Like Gruyère, it does not separate when melted.
Raclette has an inviting, aromatic scent. Like Gruyère, it does not separate when melted.

FRIED WISCONSIN CHEESE CURDS. Hailing from the midwest, this dish is near and dear to my heart. Cheese curds are the first form that any cheese takes. See, in order to make cheese, milk must be separated into curds (the solid part of the milk) and whey (the liquid part). After that, most cheese curds are formed and aged to create different styles of cheese. But you can also eat the curds themselves! They taste fresh and feel squeaky under tooth. You can also take those fresh curds, dip them in batter, and fry them into decadent melty nuggets. This, in my opinion, is where cheese curds reach their full potential.

These golden cheese curds are little fried bits of heaven.
These golden cheese curds are little fried bits of heaven.

When it comes to these fabulous varieties melted cheese, you simply can’t go wrong. At MELT: A Fondue Fest, we’ll have a different dipping station dedicated to each style, complete with accompaniments and wine or beer pairings. It’ll be the cheesy evening you’ve always dreamed of!

MELT: A Fondue Fest on Wednesday, March 30th at 7:00.

Tickets will be $35 in advance and  $45 at the door. Purchase your ticket before Saturday March 26 and you’ll be entered to win a prize in our #MELTsweeps:
Third Prize: Via Umbria’s limited edition Just Fondue It t-shirt;
Second Prize: A fondue pot to craft cheese creations (and maybe even host your own cheese party!);
First Prize: A custom cheese board;
Grand Prize: A complimentary wedge of cheese each month for a year!

See you there!

 

Alice Bergen Phillips
Alice Bergen Phillips

A fondue party to celebrate all things cheesy Read more

Here at Via Umbria, we're more than fond of fondue. Cheese is amazing any way you slice it, but something inexplicably delicious happens when ...