New & NowCheese

Freestyling Fondues Close Out the Food52 Winter Games

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As the Olympics draw to a close (awww), we bring you the third and final edition of our Food52 Winter Games. We admired Triple-Loop Noodles and skied down the Swooshiest Cakes. The competition was fierce, breakneck, even. But now it’s time for the ultimate face-off.

Presenting Freestyle Fondue! The ooey, gooey cheese dip that hails from Switzerland. But don’t be fooled by the cozy, communal vibes, because these fondues are here to battle it out. Today’s competition pits a classic against a new-comer. Can convention hold out in the face of novelty? Read on to find out.

Traditional Fondue Fribourgeois

In one corner, is this classic fondue with a capital “C”. It features not one but two Swiss cheeses and a healthy splash of Swiss wine to boot. Nutmeg, black pepper, brandy up the flavor and an unexpected spritz of lemon provides a welcome brightness. This is one to put on wool socks for and tuck into with a crusty loaf of bread—think baguette here.

Traditional Fondue Fribourgeois - Legendary and Original

Traditional Fondue Fribourgeois - Legendary and Original

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Serves 4


  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and smashed
  • 400 milliliters dry white wine (Fendant du Valais, Languedoc, Rhone,etc...)
  • 14 ounces Gruyere cheese (preferably aged), cubed or shredded
  • 14 ounces Vacherin Fribourgeois, cubed
  • 1 pinch freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 pinches freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 shot Kirsch (cherry brandy)
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • Bread for dipping


Go to Recipe

Aged Cheddar and Pilsner Fondue

Meanwhile, here comes this brew-forward hotshot. The heavy hitter here? A sharp, edgy cheddar, accented by a hearty helping of pilsner, and a zip of mustard powder and Worcestershire. As for what works best for dipping, we've got way more than bread. There are tart apple slices, charred sausage links, and lots of fresh vegetables. Are we freestyling now? For sure.

Aged Cheddar and Pilsner Fondue

Aged Cheddar and Pilsner Fondue

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Serves 6

Aged Cheddar and Pilsner Fondue

  • 1 pound aged cheddar cheese, shredded (the older the cheese, the better!)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch, slightly rounded
  • 1 pinch chili powder
  • 1 pinch paprika
  • 1 pinch cayenne
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons mustard powder
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 medium shallot, minced (or a small onion)
  • 1 cup pilsner or favorite ale
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce (or to taste)
  • 1 pinch Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste

Dipping Suggestions

  • 2 apples, sliced into wedges
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 3 spicy sausage links
  • 1 loaf of day old sourdough, cut into cubes
  • 1 bunch of asparagus
  • 1 bunch of broccoli
  • 1 pound potatoes
  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 4 to 5 shallots
Go to Recipe

Which ultra melty, cheesy dip do you want to take home the gold? Cheer for your favorite in the comments section!

Tags: Entertaining, Winter, Pop Culture