Raclette, one of the best-kept Swedish secrets, is both a type of cheese and the name of a Swiss dish. In the same vein as fondue, the whole idea is eating melted cheese with other tasty morsels of meats or vegetables. It’s the highbrow version of fondue, with none of that everyone-dipping-into-one-pot gimmick.
Pronounced (rah-KLET), semi-firm, made from cow’s milk and usually fashioned into a 13lb wheel, it has a very communal aspect. Traditionally the melting happens in front of an open fire, and then is scraped off and accompanied by small firm potatoes (bintje, charlotte, or raclette), gherkins, pickled onions, and dried meat, such as jambon cru/cuit and viande des grisons. Usually it is served with warm beverages.
This Swedish tradition has been around since the Medieval period and the dining is relaxed, social eating and drinking, usually going on all evening. The modern way however involves an electric table-top grill where the cheese is brought to the table ready-sliced, with platters of boiled potatoes and vegetables with charcuterie.
Until the Raclette craze picks up though, it’s pretty hard to find restaurants that center around this Swiss cheese. But there are a lot of fondue places, and if you’re really lucky, you’ll find Raclette on the menu. Here are some venues that serve Raclette so bring a friend, because it’s usually only served if you’re with someone else or in a group.
Their Raclette is for two
and it’s paired with boiled potatoes,
ham, viande des grisons, and garnishes.
Kashkaval boasts an impressive menu
ranging from Swiss to Mediterranean tapas
to American but with a delicious Raclette
for an amazingly budget price.
On their “Cheese Boards” section
you can find the “Classic Raclette”,
accompanied with potatoes, gherkins, balsamic glazed onions and
(most importantly) bacon!
Heidi Restaurant & Bar
You’ll find Raclette in the “Vorspeise” (appetizers) section and it’s called Heidiland Raclette. This one features potato confit and house pickles.
La Maison du
If you simply just want a taste of Raclette
before you smother it over your food,
head to La Maison Du Croque Monsieur
for a Croque Monsieur made with Raclette cheese.
Many see Artisanal as the mecca for cheese fans, boasting a wide range of fondue-able fromage. It has a beautiful atmosphere and even more beautiful fare. The Raclette is offered as a fondue, but it needs to be pre-ordered. Also available at the retail counter.
The awesome thing about this place
is that Raclette is both an entree in the fondue
section as well as a starter, so even if you’re not fully ready to commit, the option is there. AND it’s a one price all you can eat deal.