Well, since today is the last day of American Cheese Month, I have partnered up with Whole Foods to share 5 mistakes that you shouldn't make when providing a cheese plate for your guests. I also wanted to show three American made cheeses that don't have anything to do with Kraft Singles :)
1. Don't only provide one type of cheese. Venture out with different textures, softness, creaminess, flavor profiles, and even countries of origin if you want. This will ensure that different guests with different taste preferences can all find something they will enjoy. I like to go with three varieties. Chipotle Gouda is ALWAYS a hit.
2. Don't forget about your pregnant friends! Make sure when you are buying fancy cheese, that you get at least one that is pasteurized for your pregnant friends. Preggos like cheese too! They just need to make sure it's safe for the little one swimming around in their belly.
3. Don't forget to label! You can get cutesy with a cheese board or even a chalkboard cheeseboard to label, or go as simple as putting the label right beside the cheese so guests know what they're eating. Otherwise, if I don't know what it is, I'm usually not brave enough to try it. This will also keep you from having to man the appetizer table and telling people over and over what cheeses are there. These cute chalkboard labels can just be stuck into the cheeses, themselves.
4. Make sure to have adequate silverware, cutlery, and serving ware out. Do you have some sort of jam or preserves to go along with your baked brie or goat cheese? Make sure to have a little spoon out for it. Have a different cheese knife for each type of cheese if you can, as well. Otherwise, people will use their crackers to dip and/or slice and make a huge, unappetizing mess.
5. Don't put the cheese out right when guests are starting to arrive. By allowing the cheese to sit out for about half an hour before guests arrive, you will allow for optimal flavor AND easier slicing.
((items and cheese shown here: coupole aged goat cheese - made in vermont, deliciousness whiskey peach jam - made in denver, whole foods brand plain crackers, finocchiona, avalanche cheese cabra blanca - local award winner - made from goat milk, vella dry jack - made in california))
If I can be honest, I think I've made all of these mistakes. Do you have any more cheese plate do's or dont's?