The word “fondue” means literally “melted” in French. In Switzerland, fondue is made by melting cheese with white wine, pepper, garlic and kirsch (cherry schnapps).
Photo courtesy of Fribourg Tourist Bureau.
Different regions use different cheeses and have different recipes however. In the canton of Valais, no starch, butter, or eggs are added, while in many other regions they are used for thickening. Today, many people use corn starch.
Fribourg fondue is different from other cantons in that it uses Fribourg Vacherin cheese. Both Gruyère and Fribourg make what is referred to as “half and half”, meaning they use half Gruyère and half Fribourg Vacherin cheese.In central Switzerland, it is common to use Gruyère, Emmental and Sbrinz, a hard cheese from central Switzerland that is claimed to be the oldest cheese in Europe.