The Melting Pot
453 Miamisburg Centerville Rd.
Dayton, OH 45459
A chain that usually can be found in nice suburbs of cities across the United States, The Melting Pot bases its menu off of a pretty different menu item: fondue. Whether food is being cooked in cheese, or a hot broth, or you’re feeling a dessert and the food is in chocolate, the restaurant specializes in the simple love of a romantic dinner meant to be shared among a couple or a small group of people. It’s not a place where you go lightly, the prices are a bit higher and the attire is certainly a little nicer.
For most of the menu, the dishes you order are actually served to you raw and uncooked — you’re actually supposed to sit them in the pot built into the table and let them cook for you. Dip them into the boiling pot and be patient! The veggies inside the pot will be delicious when you’re done. Some of the things I tried:
- Filet mignon: Nice cut of steak, chopped and best when cooked rare, the meat really can use the rare kick.
- Sesame-crusted ahi tuna: A nice tuna but you miss all of the sesame once it’s knocked off when the meat is in the pot.
- Honey orange duck breast: A sweeter marinade covers the duck, though it loses some of the sweeter orange taste. Still good, but perhaps this one needs some more seasoning.
- Memphis-style dry rub pork: Likely my favorite meat dish, the pork has a nice rub on it, but again some of that is lost when it’s in the bouillon.
- Atlantic salmon filet: Salmon is good for a light cook, which makes this one especially nice.
- Chicken & vegetable potstickers: Nice in the court bouillon, because it cooks the dumpling quickly and there is no risk of it being overcooked.
The restaurant is a low-lit, couples-focused environment, and I highly recommend you make a point to dress up when you’re here. Expect the dress code to be a little nicer too, this is a date night location, and the bar offers a list of nicer wines and other kinds of spirits that are a bit pricier. Is it worth the money? I’m not convinced. A lot of the meats lose the flavor when they’re in that common court bouillon, and the portions are so small (and expensive) that by the time you get things just right…you’re out of food.
The restaurant is one where you will want to have a good eye for cooking the meat so it’s not soggy or overdone, but the end result is a nice experience. Consider this one a date night option.
- I won’t say this isn’t a place for kids, but it’s a nicer restaurant and the heating element built into the middle of the table can be a hazard if you’re not familiar. Consider it the best kind of experience for an intimate date.
- The dishes you order are cooked by you. If you’re not a cook, maybe go for something like the beef — which isn’t a danger if it’s undercooked — or the dumplings, which don’t turn tough when overcooked.
- Dress up! This is a nicer restaurant.