Small or Large Chocolate Fountains for Home, Weddings or other Functions
Buy or Hire a Chocolate Fountain
We all have our special moments to share! And what better way to do it than a special party, an event that you want to be remembered with joy by every guest attending to it? For that to happen, you need a chocolate fountain, that unique accessory that will make your wedding, birthday or anniversary a true wonder for all your invited friends.
Now imagine this: at the entrance, guests are welcomed by an inciting sweet delicious smell: hot chocolate. They make a few steps further into the room and notice a large table on which tens of perfect strawberries, marshmallows, biscuits, waffles, pastries, bananas and doughnuts are just laying there nicely stuck into thin bamboo skewers.
The sweet warm smell still seduces their noses and makes them wander what's cooking... So they keep on walking and suddenly there it is... a mysterious device that produces the most wonderful thing in the whole world: a never ending chocolate cascade. It's a chocolate fondue fountain!
You invite them to get a strawberry skewer and put it under the warm chocolate fondue wave. The taste is wonderful, the overall image is unique, the smell is unforgettable and the whole idea has everlasting memory potential.
Until a few years ago, the chocolate cascade was to be found only at special events hosted by famous rich people who could afford to buy a chocolate fountain. Nowadays, anyone can buy or rent a chocolate fountain at decent prices.
Chocolate Fountain For Hire, Mini Fountain To Buy
There are two major types of chocolate fountains: chocolate fountains to buy and chocolate fountains for hire.
- Most people buy the so called mini chocolate fountains. These are smaller (around 19"), made from plastic or regular steel and can accommodate around 30 people. People use all sorts of recipes including dark, milk and white chocolate with fruit, nuts, donuts and other specialties. Many people like the Belgian chocolate fountain, a regular fountain which uses mouth-watering Belgian chocolate. Never put nuts or fruit chocolate into the fountain because the small pieces of filling may get stuck in the auger or damage the perfect flow (Sephra, Chocoley, SF Signature).
- The commercial (catering) fondue fountains are quite big (up to 52" tall), made of stainless steel and can serve up to 800 people. These are ideal for weddings, parties, corporate events and other events. A chocolate fountain at a wedding is certain to get people talking.
Chocolate Fountains in UK
If you are a big chocolate fan, I'm sure you would want to have your very own chocolate fountain at home. You can buy it online for £20 to £200 (cheap fountains don't give you the real experience and often break down after only a few uses, so I would recommend products over £50 although this Giles & Posner Premier Chocolate Fountain for £35 is one of the better buys).
On the other hand, if a large event is on the agenda (like a wedding or a special company event), the best idea is to hire a chocolate fountain for the party or wedding, not only because it can accommodate a larger number of people (with its 50 or more pounds of chocolate), but also because it comes with special assistance in setting up and using (a detailed manual or a real person who stands by to help each guest place the fruit in the fondue chocolate).
The price for hiring a chocolate fountain varies depending on the dealer, the size of the fountain and the delivery distance. It ranges between £50 and £350 per night (that may or may not include the price of the chocolate). Not very cheap, but for a really unique event, it is not an exaggerated expense.
I'm definitely going to buy a choco fountain for myself or at least hire one on a special occasion. I think I'll go for a mini chocolate fountain or a used chocolate fountain. But before I do that, I need to know how these fountains work.
I'm sure you have already heard about fondue (even if you've not tasted it). Now, this fondue (melted chocolate, in short) is drawn by an auger to the top of a steel fountain with several steel trays and released from there. Thanks to gravity, the heated chocolate falls continuously like a cascade, from one tray to the lower one, until it gets at the bottom recipient, where it is reheated and drawn again to the top. Nothing too complicated yet. In short:
- The chocolate pieces are put in the warming pot placed at the bottom of the chocolate fondue fountain.
- Once the chocolate has completely melted, it is drawn to the top of the fountain by a vertical auger.
- The chocolate falls from the top of the fountain in a cascade-like wave, reaching several trays placed from top to bottom.
- After it reaches the bottom, the chocolate is being reheated and drawn back to the top.
Fondue Fountain Recipes - Belgian Chocolate is Best
The first question that pops to mind is: What type of chocolate should I use for the fountain? Can I take any chocolate bar and put into the melting pot? Well, not really.
In order for the cascade to pour evenly out of the fountain, you need the so called Belgian couverture chocolate (usually found in the covering of pralines), which contains lots of cocoa butter (perfect for the constant flow needed).
The bars you find in supermarkets have less cocoa butter and they need a special additive (vegetable oil) to work in the fountain. I don't like the whole idea of adding oil, because it affects the taste of chocolate. So it's better to use the real couverture products, which can be purchased from some of the companies that sell or rent chocolate fountains.
Good, now that I have the perfect chocolate cascade, what can I dip in it? Almost anything that works well with chocolate: all sorts of fruits (strawberries, bananas, apple slices, apricot or peach, grapes or pineapple), pastries, marshmallows, biscuits, pancakes, waffles, or your fingers - if you've got nothing else at hand.
Popular choco fountain brands include:
- Sephra chocolate fountain (London, UK) - some people call it Sephora
- Rival chocolate fountain (Texas, US)
- Fondue chocolate fountain (California, US)
- Spring chocolate fountain (Illinois, US)
- Nostalgia chocolate fountain
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