How does a chocolate fountain work and what can I do if my home fountain doesn't work properly? This article explains how chocolate fountains work and how to get the most out of your home fountain.
What is a Chocolate Fountain?
A chocolate fountain is a device for serving chocolate fondue. It can come in many different sizes, mini, medium, large and extra large depending on the number of guests you wish to cater for. The fountain has multiple tiers over a heated basin at the bottom. The chocolate is melted in the basin and then pulled up through the augur and continuously flows over the tiers. When it flows over the tiers, guests are able to select a condiment they would like to dip into the fountain, using a skewer, they select a dip of their choice and coat their item in delicious, warm melted chocolate....heaven!
Essentially, a chocolate fountain is composed of two parts. The base is the motor and a heater. The heater is designed to transpose heat through the base to keep the chocolate in liquid form. The motor drives the screw in the upper part of the fountain. This is an Archimedes screw, weren't they clever! This is thought to have originated around 600 BC, I bet they never thought of a chocolate fountain then. The screw lies in a tight cylinder in a vertical fashion with several holes at the bottom of the screw. The screw lifts the chocolate to the top of the cylinder from where it flows over several plates and down the fountain to be recycled again. This is the basic premise of a chocolate fountain, because the chocolate is thick, there is no need for a pump as the screw is a better means for lifting the chocolate up.
Why have a chocolate fountain? Chocolate Fountains are a new and impressive form of entertainment, they create a fantastic focal point at any major event and provide your guest with a unique and interactive way of treating themselves to luxurious fondue chocolate. Chocolate fountains are a great solution for some weddings, they provide a wonderful desert or can be used for an evening buffet. Some people chose to have a chocolate fountain rather than a wedding cake, this is because chocolate fountains are interactive and people can help themselves as much as they like when the would like it
What should you consider when booking a chocolate fountain? We recommend
you consider booking you chocolate fountain at least 12 months in advance,
this is because they are extremely popular. To enable you to get a realistic
quote you will need to provide the following details:
Most people book their chocolate fountain for the evening and on average, chocolate fountain companies hire their fountain for a period of 3 hours. However, every wedding/event is different, if you require your fountain during the day or for a longer period of time etc, please discuss this with the chocolate fountain company you have chosen
Home chocolate fountains are mini versions of the commercial ones used for weddings and events. Unfortunately there is a lot of rubbish out there and we get calls regularly from people saying that their mini fountain doesn't work. Here are a couple of things that will help. Only use a quality chocolate that is made specifically for chocolate fountains. This tends to be more expensive but it is the key to success. Chocolate purchased from your local supermarket doesn't work unless you put oil in it, a good quality fondue chocolate doesn't require oil. The poorer the quality chocolate, the more oil you require. This is in fact a contradiction because standard chocolate bars typically contain around 20% vegetable fat anyway, but you will still have to add more oil because of the high level of impurities. If this doesn't work, take the fountain back to the point of purchase and tell them that it is rubbish, maybe some of the high street chains will think again about selling consumers junk!
How do you get the most out of your home fountain. Ensure that you have a variety of dips available, the best to use are strawberries, grapes and other fruits such as pineapple and melon but fruit works really well with chocolate. Ensure that you have skewers and enough for your guests, these are readily available at a variety of shops, especially hardware shops that sell barbecues. Also ensure that you have some large napkins as you wouldn't want chocolate dripping all over your floor. Finally, presentation is key, make sure that your skewers are kept together and that you present your home fountain as clean and attractive on a surface that is easy to wipe to ensure that drips don't spoil your display.
Finally, after your event has finished, don't turn the fountain of and go to bed. Dispose of the chocolate whilst it is still in liquid form as this makes cleaning so much easier. Your fountain should also disassemble into separate parts, put everything except the motor assembly into a dishwasher or a sink full of hot and soapy water and then it should be easily to clean down. Before you pack your fountain away, make sure that it is completely clean and dry to prevent any contamination.
If you have any more questions, please don't hesitate to contact us at the Chocolate Fountain Directory or Chocolate Fountains of Devon for advice and information on suppliers.
The Barn, Goulds farm