The first time I had an authentic Classic Swiss Fondue was in Lucerne, Switzerland at the Stadtkeller Restaurant during our European vacation back in the 90s.
One could say I quite enjoyed the taste of a classic swiss fondue. We also took in a folklore show while enjoying our fondue in Switzerland, and did some yodeling which I failed at miserably.
In Switzerland I learned the components of a Swiss Fondue are simple; wine, garlic, cheese, (Gruyere and Michaël Tell Alp cheese or an Emmentaler cheese) and sometimes before serving they add a touch of kirsch. Since kirsch is an acquired taste, I tend to leave it out.
When fondue became big back in the 70s, people put their own spin on a Swiss Fondue still using these the same ingredients. Some prefer to rub the fondue pot with garlic, I see no point in this. In Lucerne they put the garlic in the fondue and leave it. I prefer not to have garlic swimming in my cheese.
I slice the garlic into a few pieces and add it to the wine to simmer for a 1-2 minutes. The garlic is then removed from the wine before the cheese is added. The flavour of the garlic is left in the fondue without any bits.
Besides cheese and chocolate, there are two other fondues I learned about in Switzerland; chinoise fondue (a Chinese meat turned soup) or bourguignonne fondue (a Swiss meat in oil). Due to splatter, residue and other reasons, we stay away from oil and prefer broth (chinoise style).
As in other fondues we do, cheese fondues come in many varieties. If you love to fondue and want to expand your fondue horizons, check out our Old Cheddar Cheese & Bacon Fondue.
Did you know that vendors in Switzerland sell a pre-made shredded blend of cheese ready to go? This is due to the popularity of fondue in Switzerland.
Favourite Swiss Fondue Dippers
We tend to stick with traditional:
- par-boiled baby potatoes
- blanched broccoli
- crusty day old bread
What kind of dippers would you try in this fondue?
- 4 1/2 cups or 300 gr Gruyere Cheese grated
- 4 1/2 cups or 300 gr Emmentaler Cheese grated
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 clove garlic cut into 3 or 4 slices lengthwise
- 1/4 tsp fresh ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- In a bowl combine Gruyere and Emmentaler cheese with cornstarch. Set aside.
- Add wine and garlic to a large saucepan. Heat to a simmer over medium heat. After 1-2 minutes remove garlic. Reduce heat to low.
- In small handfuls add cheese mixture and gently whisk in. Once cheese is melted add next addition and continue on adding and whisking until cheese is gone.
- Remove from heat and stir in nutmeg and salt.
- Transfer to fondue pot and serve immediately with dippers.