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The Melting Pot

snakepit99 Feb 23, 2014 11:51 AM

I recently heard about this place from a friend and I was wondering what others who have gone there could tell me what they think about it?

  1. t
    ThanksVille Feb 23, 2014 03:39 PM

    Desperately overpriced, too precious other than as novelty dinner theater and much too slow to be enjoyable. Did I mention severely overpriced.

    1. c
      centralpadiner Feb 23, 2014 03:56 PM

      It's a gimmick. My kids had fun with it. I can see it for a group for "girls' night." But, yeah, expensive for what it actually is (food and quality wise)

      1. b
        bugablue13 Feb 24, 2014 06:13 AM

        It's very yummy. But to quote my husband... "I just spent $150 to cook my own damn dinner?".

        I do like it though. If you just do a cheese and dessert it's reasonable. But they push this 5 course thing and it's a fortune. There are lots of good copycat recipe sites that you can do at home for a romantic evening.

        1 Reply
        1. re: bugablue13
          simon018 Mar 18, 2014 06:27 PM

          Thanks for the info - my girlfriend wants to celebrate her 50th with family here (hasn't been there before) so I'll share this with her. BTW: my husband would be saying the exact same thing ;)

        2. c
          cwdonald Feb 25, 2014 11:04 AM

          Melting Pot is a chain. We have several in the Philadelphia area (Warrington, King of Prussia). Personally not a fan but if you like seventies style fondue, its not bad. I do not like their dipping sauces, preferring more classic french like bernaise, bordelaise, hollandaise.

          1. jrvedivici Feb 25, 2014 12:26 PM

            Here's what you need to know;

            It's a novelty.......as others have mentioned. You cook your own food and honestly it's all boiled. How many times a week do you want to eat boiled meat/fish/veggies?

            It's overpriced and as others have mentioned. I often wonder, why do I have to pay so much when this place doesn't require a chef, or most kitchen staff??? Think about it if you have been there you know what I'm talking about.

            The local Health Boards make owners and managers of restaurants spend countless hours learning food handling and storage etc. Here the restaurant places plates of raw meat and seafood on your table, which has a stove top on it and pretty much says "Here's your food, take care, have fun, see you when your plates are empty" and leaves you there. Sure they warn you not to touch the raw food etc. but how many people really pay attention to warnings when they have a couple drinks in them. I've been shocked these places have been allowed to operated, allowing the patrons to be in control of the cooking, cross contamination etc. of their food. I would love to see a food poisoning statistic of these places vs. other restaurants.

            Ok the cheese appetizer and fondue are really f'n good!!!

            1. Boston_Otter Feb 25, 2014 02:56 PM

              When people tell me a place is "overpriced", I usually just sort of laugh.

              Having been to the Melting Pot many times with big groups for birthdays: it is very overpriced. And it's terrible for big groups -- since you're seated in four-person tables, it's impossible to chat with the rest of the group.

              They will try to sell you on "the big night out". It's BS. It's a ridiculously expensive plate of chopped up vegetables and meat with a pot to cook them in.

              If you go there, get a cheese fondue, some drinks, maybe a salad, maybe a chocolate fondue, and call it a night.

              1. b
                BuildingMyBento Feb 26, 2014 08:37 AM

                It might be a little late for this year/somewhat OT, but if anyone's ever in Manhattan, Artisanal (a cheese store/restaurant) offers a different fondue each day during February.

                Also, I just found out about this, so three days left...

                2 Replies
                1. re: BuildingMyBento
                  debinqueens Feb 26, 2014 06:31 PM

                  Kashkaval on ninth ave is actually my favorite fondue in terms of bang for the buck. Really good charcuterie and spreads as well.

                  1. re: debinqueens
                    BuildingMyBento Feb 26, 2014 09:53 PM

                    Cheers for the recommendation.

                    Just from looking at their menu, I'd eat anything, but what do you particularly like at Kashkaval?

                2. l
                  libgirl2 Feb 26, 2014 06:23 PM

                  It is overpriced but for that one off special occasion its fun. I always end up smelling like cooked meat when I leave though. I have spent quite a bit of money for lousy food and not a great experience, at least here the food is yummy and its an adventure.

                  1. Kris in Beijing Mar 1, 2014 05:49 PM

                    One note, though-- at least in our area, you can grab MP coupons in most "Valpac" type mailers nearly every month.

                    1. alliegator Mar 2, 2014 08:10 AM

                      I went ones years ago, thought it was great (except for the price), bought my own fondue pot and never returned.
                      Making it at home is much more fun!

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: alliegator
                        HeyImBack Mar 2, 2014 10:17 AM

                        I agree that making it home is much more fun, plus there's the huge advantage of selecting just the dippers you want and not getting the dippers you don't want.

                        I had dinner at Melting Pot a few weeks ago, and it was my first time there in several years. For the cheese course, they served an assortment of cubed breads, chunks of apples, chunks of cauliflower, baby carrots, and . . . wait for it . . . GRAPE TOMATOES. Now I love those little tomatoes for snacking and in salads, but who wants to dip one into hot bubbling cheese? I took one for the team and tried it and much to my surprise (not), it didn't work at all. There are so many better options (little potatoes, celery, chunks of sausages) so I have to think they only served them b/c they had a lot of tomatoes to use up.

                        1. re: HeyImBack
                          Boston_Otter Mar 3, 2014 08:29 AM

                          Exactly -- when I do fondue at home, I don't feel guilty for not using the obscenely expensive veggies I was just served. And honestly, I don't think anyone enjoys dipping cold, raw cauliflower into a cheese fondue. Or grape tomatoes, for that matter!

                      2. dave_c Mar 6, 2014 12:16 PM

                        I don't know if they still do happy hour pricing, I thought that was reasonably priced, but that was 6 years ago.

                        The dinner was okay, but I was impressed by the dessert fondue. If we ever go back, I would just to dessert at happy hour pricing. :-)

                        1. sunangelmb Mar 16, 2014 06:02 PM

                          Yuck. My kids love it, but I can't stand it. It's super pricey, and I always feel greasy and unsatisfied when we leave (only have been there three times) The burners always break, regardless of when we go, or where we sit. Last time the burner went out while cooking chicken, and I ended up not realizing and biting into partially cooked chicken. That was the end. I bought a fondue pot, and from now on, it's fondue at home. My son requested it for his special birthday dinner, and I felt bad, but stuck to my guns and said no.

                          1. The Professor Mar 16, 2014 07:32 PM

                            I love fondue, but yeah, this place is overhyped and overpriced. Not saying I's _never_ go back...but I'm in no huryy to revisit.
                            Frankly, you can do it much better at home.

                            1. s
                              snippet Mar 22, 2014 12:13 PM

                              IMO it's an overpriced novelty. Especially the "big night out". And the entree course involves boiling your own meat/veggies - I don't want them boiled, yuck, and when I go out I don't want to cook my own dinner. In theory it sounds sort of like a fun thing to do with a group but it doesn't really work that well. Too many tangled forks in the pot and takes forever.

                              I love a nice cheese or chocolate fondue, and if you limit yourself to that and a salad it's maybe not too bad, but then I ask myself if I really want (ok - should) have a dinner consisting mostly of cheese.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: snippet
                                Boston_Otter Mar 22, 2014 02:21 PM

                                As the person below pointed out, Chinese hotpot is exactly the same idea (cooking food in broth). You're not 'boiling' your food. You're cooking it in hot broth or wine, European-style. You can also flash-cook in hot oil, but the broth/wine is more flavorful.

                                1. re: Boston_Otter
                                  snippet Mar 22, 2014 06:22 PM

                                  Perhaps not technically "boiled" - it's been awhile and I don't recall exactly what the liquid was up to - but that's pretty much how it tastes to me which was really my point. I think I've tried 2 of the broths there and neither really imported any flavor.

                              2. f
                                foodieX2 Mar 22, 2014 12:28 PM

                                For dining out I would much rather head to chinatown and get hot pot. Better flavors, interesting proteins and very affordable. Same "fun" communal aspect.

                                We do a fondue party most NYE. Usually one cheese, one meat and one dessert. Now thats fun! And you will get considerably better quality than you will find at MP.

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