- HKL Oct 3, 2001 01:11 PM
Lately I've been hearing a lot about La Fondue in Saratoga and was wondering if anyone has actually dined there. Is it worth the big $$$? What did you have? Would it be worth checking out?
Best fondue I've ever had. We started with the game platter and court bouillon, moved on to a cheese fondue made with scotch whiskey that was wonderful and there was a chocolate fondue for dessert. Costs an arm and a leg as you know, but you spend a long time at the table. The wine list is good too.
I've got to agree with the other reviewers. It's a little on the "theme" end but not too bad. But it's one of the best fondue restaurants I've been too - the choice of different cheese & chocolate fondues is a bonus. And if you go with more than 2 people, you get 1 choice for every 2 people (at least it was a few years back). Unlike the hot oil that most fondue restaurants have, La Fondue has a grill option which is nice.
I can't rightly call this a review, I haven't actually eaten there in three years (and Burke's never eaten there at all), though I have dined there many, many times. If I go back again I'll write a full review.
If I have to come to a single conclusion about La Fondue it's that the place is perfect for dining with folks who are normally frightened of fancy restaurants. The staff is young and personable, the food playful and simple (exotic enough to sound wild, but relatively tame on the tongue), the sauces are served in little dipping bowls set into racks, so the timid can sample or avoid at will, and the tastes are gentle, without much complexity.
Big salads, appetizer fondue (cheese), dinner fondue (grill, broth or wine boil), dessert fondue (milk, white or dark chocolate with your choice of liqueurs) leave you quite full. It's charming, the things they give you to dip into your fondues: apples, bread cubes, and for dessert, snickers bars and marshmallows.
It's a fun meal that costs a lot but is relaxed and "carnivalesque" enough to reassure the skittish.
But having said all that, I don't consider it a place to take an experienced diner. The price is too high and the novelty value too low for anyone used to high-end fooding.