Vintage Fondue Pots - Buying Guide

Here’s a blast from the past, 70’s vintage fondue pots. I was surprised to find that there is a market for these kitchsy 1970’s relics. In this article we’ll do an overview of these unique cooking pots and some of the reasons behind their new popularity. And we’ll take in a few Vintage Fondue Pot buying tips as well.

Article continued below…

Why have Fondue Pots gained in popularity again? Well, in some ways, they never fully went away. There are even restaurants specializing in fondue that remain popular. Fondue, cheese or chocolate, are always a hit at parties, particularly if you want a retro 70’s feel. And, as Gen-Jones’ers and Gen-X’ers get older they’re reaching out for this bit of 70’s nostalgia.

There are basically two types of Vintage Fondue Pots that you’ll encounter, flame based or electric based.

Flame based Fondue Pots either use small candles or Sterno to heat the pot. Usually you will need to pre-heat the cheese mixture or chocolate prior to putting them in one of these fondue pots. Fortunately, today’s microwaves make this preheating rather easy as compared to the good old days of the 1970’s.

Electric based Fondue Pots have an electric heating element and offer better temperature control and most will do preheating. One important thing to note when buying a Vintage Fondue Pot is electrical safety. Some of these pots were recalled due to electrical defects. Some have become worn due to age. If you’re buying one to use, make sure it’s safe to use.

With either type of Vintage Fondue Pot, make sure that there is no damage that could cause leaks, spills or even fires. Remember even small cracks or excessive wear could be a danger sign. Hot cheese can cause serious burns so you want to make sure that the Fondue Pot is safe to use. Also make sure that you receive all of the accessories that should come with the pot. You may have trouble finding matching avocado bakelite handled fondue forks for your vintage fondue pot. However, it is actually not that hard to find a complete, new in the box, vintage fondue set. You would be surprised to find how many of these pots were long forgotten wedding gifts that have been in storage for 30+ years.

If you want to buy a new Fondue Pot rather than vintage, don’t worry they’re still made by cookware companies like Rival and the price is usually reasonable too. These are modern stainless steel or black, not 70’s style avocado, burnt orange or bicentennial red, white and blue though. But the bubbly cheese fondue is still quite tasty.


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2008-07-21 12:36:59

I suspect one reason that fondue pots are becoming popular again is the economic slow-down. Why?

Eating in restaurants is becoming more of a luxury item for many of us, and fondue parties are a nice way to socialize with friends. For some reason I have an incredibly clear memory of a fondue party that my family went to at a friend’s house in the seventies.

I must have been 9 or 10 I suppose, and I remember very clearly how much fun it was, even as a child, to sit at the table and cook pieces of meat & chicken in hot oil in (what would now be) a vintage fondue pot.

Comment by Judy Online
2008-07-21 12:45:30

I used to love having fondue parties when my husband and I were younger. Like Refurb (love those names) we more often used hot oil rather than cheese or chocolate, but almost any kind of fondue is delicious.

Time to dig out my vintage fondue pot I think.

Comment by jfc
2008-07-21 13:00:27

Hi Refurb,

The economy right now is a lot like that in the 1970’s, stagflation, so you might be on to something. That’s the kind of 70’s nostalgia we don’t need.

Comment by Luxury Paris Hotels
2008-07-21 20:47:52

I think I threw out some Vintage Fondue Pots when we packed our gear for storage: there is only so long you can hang onto stuff like Vintage Fondue Pots - I personally prefer the Chinese steam boat approach - I wonde rif you can use a Vintage Fondue Pots for that style of cooking?

Comment by jfc
2008-07-22 06:50:19

Hi Lissie,

Akismet is hating you again. :(

I know what you mean about hanging on to stuff. We either sold or threw out a lot of stuff during our last move.

Comment by Lindsay
2008-07-23 20:29:57

I think fondue has been making a comeback for a while. I’ve yet to buy a fondue pot of my own, but I sure do love visiting the Melting Pot. Anyone who has one in their town should check it out (they are pricey, but hit the bar at happy hour for great specials on drinks and cheese and chocolate fondues, yum!)

Comment by jfc
2008-07-23 20:43:45

Thanks for stopping by Lindsay,

The Melting Pot is great but it’s usually crowded and, as you said, expensive. We used to eat at one two or three times a year when we lived close by to one but now we’re almost 50 miles away from there.

2008-07-31 23:25:44

It’s all about the chocolate! I heard my younger friends talking about fondue pots so I knew a trend was being recycled. Why use a chocolate fountain when a good ol’ fondue pot from the second hand store can do both chocolate and cheese? Versatility is the key.

Comment by Beryl Cook Prints
2008-08-01 08:08:37

I couldn’t agree with you more. For me, it’s chocolate all the way, and a fondue pot is much much easier to clean than a chocolate fountain.

Now, at a party, for dramatic effect, you really can’t beat a chocolate fountain — but if you’re entertaining at home, there are few things nicer and more special than a chocolate fondue.

2008-08-12 19:29:56

I would never waste a fondue pot on cheese. Chocolate or nothing! For dipping I serve strawberries, white chocolate squares, pineapple, oranges, cinnamon bread squares. Mmmm……

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