Master entertaining at home with these cheese board tips and notable faux pas.
A beautiful cheese board is the home entertainer's best kept secret – it elevates the flavor of any spread and infuses style into every get together. Nevertheless, you don't have to be a highly skilled cheesemonger to select and present cheeses for dramatic effect. These dos and don’ts will make it easy to craft the best cheese board right at home.
Do: Embrace textural variety
When choosing cheeses for your board, it's easy to get wrapped up in flavor, look, and country of origin (Is it American? Italian? French?). Instead, focus on textures. A soft, spreadable cheese like our Crescenza-Stracchino is a good option for your board’s mouth-feel foundation. Next, choose a semisoft cheese, like picante Peperoncino®. Round out your board with a hard, savory cheese like nutty American Grana®Extra Aged Parmesan.
Do: Limit yourself to 3-5 options
Though the prospect of sheer variety is appealing, more cheese isn't necessarily a better option when you're putting together the best cheese board on the block. Rather than overwhelming your guests with too many cheese options, select three or four (or five, if you have a large crowd) high quality cheeses that offer alluring and distinct flavors.
Do: Choose 2-3 accompaniments
First, choose one or two bread or cracker options. Sliced baguettes and crispy crostinis are perennial favorites. Opt for non-seasoned versions to throw the spotlight on the complex flavors of your cheese. Then, consider pairing with a sweet counterpart like good-quality raw honey or tart cherry preserves. Marcona almonds also offer a delicious cheese accompaniment that adds variety and texture to your board.
Don't: Stick a knife in a wedge and leave it at that
Cut your cheese before putting it on your board – but only the first few slices. This makes it easier for guests to feel comfortable serving themselves, while also preserving the remainder of the block.
Don't: Drizzle jam over cheese on the board
While the concept may seem to channel Iron Chef-worthy presentation, resist the temptation. Place jam on the side. Allow guests to sample the cheese by itself first. They can always add your tasty tart cherry preserves if they'd like. The goal here is to preserve the complex flavor of the cheese, not overwhelm it with add-ons.
Don't: Serve your cheese cold
It may seem counterintuitive, but cheese flavors make their best appearance when they're at room temperature. Set your cheese board on your table or buffet about 30-45 minutes before your guests begin to arrive.
When mastering the art of cheese board assembly, you're sure to find all the variety you need among La Bottega di Belgioioso's offerings. All are produced with fresh Wisconsin milk in small batches using traditional Italian artisanal methods to ensure the finest, highest-quality cheeses available. Tasting these cheeses yourself is the best way to get acquainted with the options that will help you craft the best cheese board possible.