How to Build the Perfect Cheese Platter

My idea of the perfect girls’ night is staying in and chatting over wine and cheese, so I decided to throw a little get together at my house last weekend. With so many possible pairings, putting together a great platter can be a bit intimidating and overwhelming. Here are some tips to help you create a tasty spread that will have something for everyone.

Anatomy of a Cheese Plate:

Anatomy of a Cheese PlateThere is more to a cheese platter than just the cheese. The assortment should be well-balanced and include a variety of flavors and textures.

  • Compliment the spread with something sweet (such as caramel popcorn) and something salty (such as habanero BBQ almonds). Apples, dried apricots and cured meats also make for great extras.
  • Serve a variety of vehicles, such as crackers, pita chips and bite-sized bread. I bought an entertainment cracker collection, which consisted of nine different types, including hearty wheat, oyster, cream and water crackers.

Cheese Plate

When it comes to the cheese, variety is key for both the flavor and texture. To create a well-rounded assortment, there are several categories that should be included:

  • Aged: Comté, Gouda, Aged Cheddar
  • Firm: Provolone, Manchego, Monterey Jack, Gruyére
  • Soft: Brie, Goat
  • Blue: Stilton, Gorgonzola

Cheese platter 2You don’t need to shop at a fancy cheese store or spend a fortune to put together a sophisticated spread. I found these quality cheeses at our local Smith’s grocery store and Trader Joe’s. My favorite picks include:

  • Brie, which is typically a crowd favorite (soft, buttery)
  • Aged Vermont White Cheddar to offer something familiar (sharp, hard)
  • Gouda with Truffles to add a bold flavor (semi-soft, smooth, nutty)
  • Creamy Toascano Cheese Soaked in Syrah to add something unique (firm, nutty, hint of blackberry and plum flavors)

cheeseI would love to hear from you! What are your cheese plate must-haves or favorite wine and cheese pairings?

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  • Yum! My cheese platter is never complete without a creamy blue – even better if it’s a blue goats cheese. I also love brebis, made from sheep’s milk, which tastes amazing with cherry jam. But my absolute favourite at the moment is Buche D’Affinois, which is very similar to a double brie, but with soooo much flavour. Mmmm cheese….

    • jamielhatcher@gmail.com

      Those sound amazing! I will have to give them a try :) thanks for reading and commenting!

      • Haha well you know, cheese is one of my favourite topics ;). But seriously though, I really enjoy your posts – plus I kind of want to move to Vegas after all the amazing restaurants you’ve posted about.

        • jamielhatcher@gmail.com

          Aw thank you! Haha yes the dining is definitely my favorite thing about living here. The rest of the craziness I could do without :)

  • I love your blog! This looks so YUMMY!! :D

    • Thank you!! You can’t go wrong with cheese and wine :) I love your blog as well! I was excited to see another Vegas-based blog since that’s where I live, too!

  • Annie Arment

    I’m loving your articles! Wine and cheese is absolutely my kinda’ girls night too!

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