6 Common mistakes when making a cheese board (and how to avoid them)

6 Common mistakes when making a cheese board (and how to avoid them)

If you master one skill for effortless entertaining, it should be setting out a great cheese board. True cheese lovers know that a cheese plate can be either amazing—a chance to discover a new favorite cheese or experience an utterly delicious pairing
With such a delicious produce & an easy party centre price It’s worth getting it right on the first try, these are my tips on how to improve your cheese game.

1 / 6 Serving your cheese directly for the fridge 


Do not serve your cheese directly from the fridge! After 15 years as a cheesemonger this is one of the most important pieces of advice I can give when it comes to serving a good cheese board or plate. Chilled cheese is shy and often won’t possess the complexities, flavours, and nuances that you’ll notice much more clearly once the cheese has mellowed out at room temperature. If you want to wow your guests with a cheese board - Serve it at room temperature!

2 / 6 Playing it safe 


The classic cheeses are that for a good reason, we all love a good cheddar, brie or gruyere - but they say variety is the spice of life and this too is true for a good cheese board. You should be adventurous in your selections and your pairings step outside of your comfort zone and try something new. What about a Manchego coated in rosemary or an Époisses, the cheese so stinky that is banned on all French underground trains. Not only to they taste amazing, they give your dinner guests something to talk about AND they’ll all be thanking you for finding their new favourite.
A great guideline I use is having one hard cheese, one soft, a blue & a goats cheese - this is sure to keep everyone happy


Top tips for creating a the best cheese board


 3 / 6  Plonking on large pieces of uncut cheese                                                                                                                      


Cutting into that first piece of cheese can be intimidating for a dinner guest so but if you crumble a few pieces from a hard cheese like a delicious Cheddar onto the board before serving your guests won’t have to get past that awkward moment of whether they should cut into a fresh lump.  It’s also important that you, the host, cut that first slice of Brie because, as a rule of thumb, you should never cut off the “nose” of cheese: Cutting a slice parallel to the rind is a big no-no in French cheese etiquette instead cut length-ways for gorgeous long slices of oozy goodness that all your guests can enjoy. 


  4 / 6 Not having enough knifes to go round  

Making sure there is a knife for each guest just makes it easier for guests to help themselves and avoids awkward queues while filling their plates. For seasoned cheese night hosts investing in good quality cheese knives can really help to elevate the experience - ensuring cleaner cuts for prettier plates and to bringing out the best possible flavours in each slice. Different knives provide unique textures for variety.

The most common mistakes when making a cheese board and how not to

 Suggested Knives


 5 /6  Skimping on the accompaniments
We all know that the cheese is the star of the board but no board would be complete without the right accompaniments. Fresh fruit, Jams & honey bring sweetness to the cheese as well as a pop of colour. Nuts, olives and charcuterie bring a savoury saltiness that elevates almost any cheese they’re paired with. And finally, who can forget bread, biscuits or crackers to help get the cheeses from board, to mouth, without making a mess - all whilst providing some texture and crunch.
6 / 6  Forgetting about cheese pairings
Good pairings can take your cheese board from good, to great. Gone are the days of lumping a packet of water biscuits alongside a cheese board and letting the guests have at it - instead hosts should curate a board of complimentary flavours, all served next to one another to help the guests find the right pairings.
If you need more inspiration for great pairings - check out my article on my favourite cheesey pairings for this year. - Cheese Pairings