Fondue Chez Moi

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Gather your friends around a fiery cauldron & cast a spell of an enchanting evening with the magical allure of Fondue. Over the last few months, the subject of Fondue kept popping up in conversations as well as my vintage shopping excursions. Vintage Fondue forks seemed to be presenting themselves to me around ever bend & I purchased a few sets at my local antique haunts, still in their original boxes. My loft building has what is known as a “free pile”, a self service recycling depot if you will, one man’s trash being another’s treasure. While I sometimes pass this pile with a cynical thought about the desire of its donations(what will someone do with a singed toaster or singular sock).. Something caught my eye recently: a set of stainless fondue forks.

I’m not one to ignore the signs, especially ones with decorative accoutrements . Although, I hadn’t had fondue since high school French club (some time in the last century), when some friends from Chicago made plans to visit, I decided to do a fondue night.

I sold my dining room table & chairs a few years back. They went off to live a slightly more glamour existence on Shelter Island. While I once used the table as a buffet for a baby shower I hosted for my sister, it got little use outside that event. I have a Paul Frankl Cork top cocktail table from his Debonaire line, c. 1950. It is of generous but low proportions. It served as our dining table for the evening with floor pillows, a Greek flokati underneath. I mixed vintage accessories with some new pieces designed by Nate Berkus for his mastige line for Target.

We served two fondue courses; I say We instead of I because it quickly became a collaborative effort. The first a cheese fondue served in a never used before 1970’s green enameled pot. My guests assisted in cutting up various textured breads, fruits, & vegetables. When I popped the first of many champagne corks, it hit my chandelier causing the lights to first glow brighter & then dim. The magic presented itself.

For dessert, we had chocolate fondue in a vintage nickel fondue pot fitted with a double boiler. Marshmallows, strawberries, dried apricots & pound cake cubes made for decadent dipping.

I read après fondue chez moi that Martha Stewart recommends party rules for fondue gatherings. Women that drop their bread in the fondue pot have to kiss the men at the table & men that drop their bread have to buy a bottle of wine for the party guests. While those rules sound fun, I’ll have to add my own spin in a future gathering. Anyone that drops their bread has to clean the fondue pot after the party..

Interestingly enough, I also learned unbenounced to me prior, my Chicago friends had made a list of things to do together when they started dating & among them was to have Fondue. Fate & Fondue.
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