THE ULTIMATE WINE & CHEESE PARTY PLANNING TIPS
How to through a no-fuss, fun and easy party with your friends
Good food and friends, could you imagine anything better? Oh yes you can add some good wine to make it perfect. Throwing a cheese & wine party is one of the easiest no-fuss options for a memorable evening with friends or family.
While it might sound a little intimidating, you will look like a pro just following a few easy tips (no need to get a sommelier certificate.. unless you want to!).
I believe it actually is the perfect solution if you are a little new to party/gathering planning.
Until you get quite good with time management and planning ahead, most dinner parties ask for lots of last minute cooking and plating and the risk is that you hardly enjoy your own party.
A wine & cheese party allows you to enjoy your friends’ company – much less stressing and your guests will love it (who does not love either cheese or wine… a probably both?) as most of the planning is done days and hours ahead.
Save the date!
A week or so before, send out the invitations and check in with your friends who is going to come and whether they will bring some extra people.
Once you have a good idea of how many people are going to be there, you can focus on shopping your supplies!
Go to the cheese-monger – if you don’t have any close to you, a good supermarket could also do – however the cheese-monger option is my favorite especially if you are not a cheese connoisseur, you could use some tips!
Similarly I would go for a good wine shop – as selection is broader and for all budgets!
I would be careful not to overdo it: if you offer too many wines and cheese types your guest could feel overwhelmed. I would say to go for around 5-6 types of cheese and maybe 4 wines.
I would go with approximately 2.oz of cheese of each type per person; remember you will also have bread and some other nibbles to accompany.
A good selection of cheese would include one-two soft cheese; two mature and a blue cheese.
I am really not a cheese connoiseur but here below some pairs that worked well with my guests and received the blessing from the “experts” in my friends’ circle.
Shiraz or Cabernet & Gouda or Cheddar – both a flavoured Shiraz and wine and a full-bodied Cabernet pair perfectly with rich cheeses
Moscato & Blue Cheese – the sweetness of this beautifully aromatic wine goes perfectly with strong flavours of blue cheese
Chardonnay & Brie/Camembert – the high acidity of this wine is a good combination with creamy cheeses
Pinot noir & Camembert – delicate wine which pairs well with the rich and soft cheese.
Sauvignon Blanc/Pinot grigio & goat cheese – this versatile wine goes well with multiple cheese pairings
Dry rose’ & goat cheese – the wine acidity pairs well with a goat cheese
Sangiovese & pecorino – savory red wine which goes perfectly with this Italian Tuscan hard cheese.
Champagne is your jolly! – champagne goes well with most wines and it is something even your least adventurous guest will enjoy!
The cheeses and wines have the spotlight, however to best enjoy them prepared a little something to go with that:
- Fresh fruit – peers; strawberries; grapes; fresh fruits; peaches; figs
- Dry fruit – nuts, almonds, dried apricots and cranberries
- Bread: multigrain, baguette, crackers..
- Olives & cherry tomatoes
- Honey, marmalade; jams and chutney
- Truffle/mushroom sauce
Chill the wines for a few hours and take it out 20 mins before and prepare the glasses.
Take the cheese out of the fridge a couple of hours before the party.
Arrange the cheese and label it – arrange the cheese in some big cheese boards on the dinner table and have small plates ready for the guests to pick their favorite cheese and accompaniments.
Here you have some tips to throw your wine & cheese party with a handful of good friends! It will be the first of a long series.