Fondue for two
“The romantic atmosphere at Geja’s makes it an ideal date destination. A candle-lit interior complete with curtained booths and self-playing flamenco guitars (made from real flamencos) create an escape worthy of illusionist David Blaine. Fondue dining at its finest.”
My fondue partner for the evening was Cole, my fourteen-year-old son. What can I say, I bought a Geja’s Groupon and Cole wanted to Fondue.
We were seated at the darkest table in the restaurant. I read my menu by candlelight—or would have—but the wax kept putting my candle out when I tipped it. Perhaps you’re wondering why I didn’t use my i-phone; after all, they do have an app for menu reading in the dark at a fondue restaurant. Well, as you walk into the restaurant, there is a sign that reads, “Cell phones and electronic devices are not part of the Geja’s dining experience.” When I saw it, my first concern was how I was going to update my Facebook status, not how I would read my menu.
Thankfully, our server enlightened us by explaining that we only needed to pick an entree in the dark. The cheese fondue and chocolate fondue were included with our meal.
Our next fondue challenge came when the food arrived. We forked it, put it in the pot, and then couldn’t see if it was not done, done, or overdone. I broke the electronic dining rule. The correct app for fondueing in the dark is a stopwatch because a timer will ring, and my ring tone is circus music. In a romantic atmosphere forbidding electronic gadgets, circus music is not ok. Cole and I formulated a plan. He would hold our forks, and I would say ready, get set, go as he put them in the pot. Then, I would start the stopwatch. It worked; our food was cooked just right. Now the challenge was keeping the food on the fondue fork.
Cole’s lobster, scallops, and beef kept falling off his fondue fork when he tried to remove it from the pot. With a stricken look on his face, he would frantically search the pot trying to save the food from overcooking in the bubbling oil; I would have helped but I was laughing too hard.
The third time it happened, the distressed look on Cole’s young face was too hard for a mom to take, so I helped. Standing up, I used my real fork, while he used his fondue fork to frantically stab around in the bubbling pot looking for his potato. Cole worried about it being overcooked. In a motherly tone full of love (ok, I was really laughing hysterically), I reassured him that the potato would not be overcooked. Finally, we found it and gently brought it up out of the oil; however, my fork slipped and it was lost again—this time splattering oil on both of us. The waiter passing by paused with concern and wondered if he could help. Cole’s voice was full of angst when he said, “my potato is lost in the pot and might be overcooking.”
The waiter, like a knight in shining armor, whipped out his flashlight and went to battle with his fondue sword. He swiftly located the potato, forked the sucker, and placed it on my relieved son’s plate. He then said before he walked off into the dark, “Ma’am, I will leave my flashlight with you.” Our hero!
The desert portion of dinner included a chocolate fondue. Cole surprised me by ordering an espresso, and while sipping it, he dipped strawberries, bananas, and marshmallows into the chocolate fondue pot and was a fondue of misinformation. I listened politely as he shared that espresso has less caffeine than coffee. Who argues with a 14 year old? When I inquired, over my own piece of daintily dipped pound cake, if he had espresso often, my freshman said he and his friends often headed to the local coffeehouse at lunchtime for an espresso. Fine. Just when I think I have a pretty good handle on sex, drugs, smoking, drinking, and rock-n-roll, my teen decides to go espresso on me.
As I paid our check by flashlight, the thought crossed my mind that we could stab, catch, dip, and cook our own food at home. We even have two fondue pots. No espresso machine, of course, but we do have light.
On our way home, Cole, wired on espresso, planned his letter to the Olympic committee. He wants to suggest fondueing as an Olympic event. With practice, I told him, he would most certainly be a contender for a gold medal.
My review: Fondue for two, pricey. Fondue with a 14 year old, priceless.
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