You may call professional caterers to organize a Wine and Cheese Party, but you may Do It Yourself. While simple to prepare, a wine and cheese party can be very elegant and very sophisticated; perfect for an evening with friends. Since there's no cooking involved, you can spend your time chatting with your guests rather than in the kitchen. More importantly, this is an opportunity to express your good taste. While a wine and cheese party is unique because each host has his or her own ideas on what wine to serve and what cheese should complement the wine, there are some ideas that are proven with time demonstrated below.
Ideal Items to IncludeEdit
- 3-6 varieties of cheese; approximately 4oz per guest.
- 2-3 kinds of wines; 1 bottle for every 5-6 people.
- fresh fruit to complement the cheese. Olives, seedless grapes, apples, and pears are good choices.
- Nuts, especially walnuts, can be great, if all your guests can enjoy it. If even one guest cannot eat nuts, leave them out altogether.
- assorted crackers or toasts to serve the cheese.
- Serving tools:
- Guest: cocktail plates and napkins
- Serving: cheese boards, knives/slicers
- Tools to serve wine:
- Appropriate wine glasses; can be decorated with wine charms
- Wine bottle stoppers
- Anything else that may help promote the mood. For examples, candles and light chamber music can evoke the old-fashioned theme.
Suggested cheese and wine matchingEdit
|Asiago||Cabernet Sauvigon, Merlot, Shiraz|
|Bleu||Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Zinfandel|
|Brie||Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Sparkling wine, Ice Wine|
|Cheddar||Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Shiraz|
|Gouda||Riesling, Beaujolais, Merlot, Zinfinadel|
|Gruyere||Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Shiraz|
|Monterey Jack||Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Beaujolais, Merlot|
|Parmigiano Reggiano||Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Carbet Sauvignon, merlot, Shiraz|
|Swiss||Sauvignon Blanc, Baujolais, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir|
Generally, the stronger the cheese, the stronger the wine should be.
Other Serving tipsEdit
- Serve cheese at room temperature; this brings out their fullest flvaors.
- Arrange the food items 30-60 minutes before the guests arrive. Cheese should be brought out three hours before serving.
- Cover the platters with plastic wrap to keep them fresh, but remove just prior to serving
- Leave space between cheeses to keep flavors from blending
- On the same idea, each cheese should have its own knife or spreader.
- Chill white or sparkling wine for at least 1 hour prior serving. Decant red wines prior to guests' arrival.
- Wine charms can help guests distinguish their glasses. Alternatively, one may use marked wine glasses for the same purpose.
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