The Bottom Line: If you like to do fondues often, you definitely need the Cuisinart CFO-3SS Fondue Pot.
My husband and I used to make fondue for dinner fairly often during the winter months. We had a traditional fondue pot that required sterno for heating, but the design wasn't so great and we had a difficult time keeping the heat steady. When I saw that Cuisinart had an electric version available, I added it to my bridal registry and was happy to receive it as a gift from my aunt.
About This Product
The Cuisinart CFO-3SS Fondue Pot is basically a fondue pot that uses electricity instead of sterno in order to keep the contents of the vessel hot. The heat control is a twist knob that plugs into both the pot and the power cord. The heat controls on the control knob range from 1 to 8 with no indication of actual temperatures. The manufacturer's suggested retail price for this item is $59.95.
We've only used the Cuisinart Fondue Pot a couple of times but that is just because we are out of our fondue phase, not because this is an inferior product. We cook our cheese fondues in a pot over the stove, so we really just use this item on a low heat level to keep them warm while we eat, chat, drink wine, etc. We haven't attempted to do a hot oil fondue in this pot, but I'm sure it would be fine as it is plenty hot just on the low levels that we've used. If you really cranked it up to the 7-8 heat level, it would definitely be hot enough to fry chicken, shrimp, beef, etc. in an oil fondue.
Cleaning it is simple. You just unplug it from the heat control and power cord and wash it by hand in the sink. The non-stick surface inside the pot makes for very easy cleanup. The instructions state that you shouldn't immerse the pot in water as it probably would mess up the electrical connection necessary to provide power and regulate the heat. In any case, cleanup is always a fast and easy affair. I hate hand washing anything, but the Cuisinart Electric Fondue Pot is one of the easiest things I've ever had to wash.
If you like to do cheese or hot oil fondues, the Cuisinart Fondue Pot will make it a very easy thing to do. We don't use ours all that often but that is just because we've gotten out of the habit of having fondue on winter weekends. We are very happy with this product and would buy it again and again in the future if we needed another fondue pot. This is so much easier than dealing with sterno.