I physically can’t travel somewhere new and not try the local cuisine. And then write a blog post about it. Lolz because hello I’m a blogger. And if ever there was a local cuisine that I absolutely positively HAD to try on my travels, it was cheese fondue in Switzerland.
If you don’t know me, I’ll try to paint a picture for you about the extent of my cheese obsession. I’m known for making my friends fabulous cheese toasties on the regs. I put cheese on top of meals that typically don’t have cheese on top of them (like chilli con carne or bangers & mash). When I used to have the amazing Full English Breakfasts in Southeast Asia hostels, I always asked for a side of grated cheese. Baked Camembert is my ultimate night-in snack. Last Christmas me and Josh did stockings for each other and he filled mine with Babybels and mini-cheeses (so naturally he’s the one). Ive also recieved a cookbook completely devoted to cheese recipes. You getting the picture over here? I BLOODY LOVE CHEESE.
Ok now you understand the situation. I needed you to understand before I tell you how much I spent on cheese in Switzerland.
Anyways, Geneva was a Surprise Trip so didn’t have time to do massive amounts of research on which place to hit up for fondue, but a quick TripAdvisor search showed me that most of them weren’t exactly in the middle of the city. But I managed to find a restaurant that was highly recommended in the Old Town – Les Armures.
Now I had read that cheese fondue is typically ridiculously overpriced, but it didn’t deter me. I just had to try it. So I opted for a cheese and wild mushroom fondue and even though I told the waiter my mum and I wanted to share it, he convinced me that you share the pan of cheese but we’d need two portions in it, not one. And then I was all like, oh yeah cool ok, you know best.
He did not know best.
Now even by my cheese-obsessed standards. This was too much bloody cheese. We barely scraped the surface after we had eaten our quota of cheese for the day.
I think it would have been doable if it was milder but this was real strong cheese, you know? I could definitely taste gruyere cheese in there. I mean the first few bites were REAL tasty but then I realised, I don’t know if it was the saltiness of the mushrooms or whatever, but this fondue tasted like marmite. And I mean, that’s great, I love marmite, but not a whole saucepan of it. So it was hard work to eat is what I’m saying.
So then there was the matter of the bill. A portion of this cheese fondue was 30 CHF (£23.50), and we got two portions. So with a glass of wine each, it set us back 70,60 CHF (£55). And all we ate was cheese. I mean that is ridiculous, right?
I had to do it though, I couldn’t go all that way and not do it. But what I would recommend is only ordering one portion for two people! And if the waiter doesn’t like it then one of you order the fondue for one and the other order a side salad or something and share both!
Or if you’re all like, hell no that’s too much money on cheese, sort your life out Kara. Then Les Armures also did a little cheese snack – raclette cheese on a few boiled potatoes for 6,90 CHF (£5.50). Not exactly the rich cheese fondue but a little taster of Swiss melted cheese at its best! Can’t go wrong there, right?
So that was my experience with cheese fondue in Geneva! I’m tempted to try it myself at home where it doesn’t cost fifty quid a pop. Maybe that’s the next thing on my cheese-based wishlist, a fondue set… watch this space lolz.
Have you had cheese fondue? What did you think? Am I crazy for spending that much money on cheese? Let me know in the comments below or tweet me @HeelsInBackpack!