Houston Cigar Life restaurant reviews always focus on dining options that offer unique experiences. The Melting Pot in Houston is certainly one of those restaurants and it’s been a part of the Houston restaurant community for so long that an entire generation seems to have overlooked it.
This is why we feel compelled to remind you that 45 years after starting its first location in Maitland, FL; the all things melted restaurant is still serving up its special brand of dining affairs worth putting into your rotation.
Let’s start with the concept. The Melting Pot is a fondue restaurant. Each table has a stovetop built into it and everything on the menu is presented and prepared on the burner.
This makes for an excellent date night or family night out as the interactive experience generates some interesting conversation over skewer dipped sweet and savory eats.
The appetizer menu offers several cheeses to choose from which come paired with a variety plate of dippables like breads, seasonal fruits and veggies. You can also add a fancy charcuterie board as well as select a vegan cheese option.
We ordered the Quattro Formaggio which includes butterkäse, fontina, fresh mozzarella, parmesan, white wine, roasted garlic, basil & sun-dried tomato pestos.
It arrived in a metal pot secured by a medieval looking vice to ensure it doesn’t spillover en route to and from your table. Once its placed on the timed burner, it heats up and is ready to eat within a few minutes.
After the first course you can opt for a salad as your second course with four to choose from. This is the only portion of your meal that isn’t dippable, but comes with exquisite dressings.
After each course you are given a new pot for the next step in your meal.
My choice for the salad was the California which included mixed greens, candied pecans, gorgonzola, tomatoes, housemade raspberry walnut vinaigrette.
The combination of the candied pecans with the gentle sweetness of the raspberry vinaigrette was the perfect contrast to the gorgonzola crumbs atop the greens. It was a great segue into the main course.
For the main course you can pick your own option from land, sea, air or a combination of the three. There are five prefixed options to choose from or you can make your own combination from the a la carte menu. You can add a lobster trail to your main course if you like, but I opted not to.
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While you and your dining partner can select different protein options, you do have to agree on a cooking style. You can also opt for a veggie only meal if you have dietary restrictions or just don’t feel like having any kind of meat.
We agreed on the Coq Au Vin style which was a broth of Burgundy wine, mushroom, scallions and fresh garlic. The ingredients are brought to your table separately and are placed into the table top pot one by one.
Your proteins are served raw similar to Korean BBQ and it is up to you to place them on skewers and cook them in your melting pot. Our server recommended that cook each protein items for about 2 minutes to ensure a thorough cooking.
I had shrimp, duck and filet mignon which was under the Create Your Own option. I cooked the duck and shrimp for about 4-5 minutes and stuck to the 2 minute rule on the steak.
It’s amazing how much of the flavor from the broth and fresh veggies your proteins absorb considering you are essentially boiling them. But let me assure you, nothing that was served to us during any course was light on flavor.
Lastly, we arrive to our fourth course which is dessert and you have 6 options of chocolate fondue to choose from. While the final selection was hard, we were able to settle on the Flaming Turtle which is prepared table side and includes creamy milk chocolate melted with caramel, flambéed, and topped with candied pecans.
It comes served with Oreo crusted marshmallows, waffles, brownies and cakes that are all dippable using your skewers.
The dessert was the perfect night cap as you control how much you want to eat, but I’d be surprised if you don’t stop until the last drop of melted chocolate.
They do have a full bar and while I didn’t have a drink that option is certainly there.
This all came under the Thursdate package which was $94 total for two and when adding in our nonalcoholic drinks our total came out to about $110.00 +/-. While it wasn’t planned, each Thursdate table comes partially covered in rose petals.
Considering the uniqueness of the experience, the quality of the food and its overall deliciousness this was well worth the price of entry and at least worth a trip if you have not yet been.