Menus and Party Planning
Menus and Party Planning
Daily Delight
Daily Delight
The Cheese Plate Essentials

If you are hosting a wine and cheese party, or simply want to serve a cheese platter at your next party, below are some basics every future cheese connoisseur needs to learn.


Serve only about three to five cheeses when entertaining, anymore and the cheeses will begin to compete. Take cheese out of the refrigerator half an hour before you serve it to let your flavors unfold.


Type of cheese: fresh and fresh- ripened

What they are: Mild, slightly tart fresh cheeses are uncooked and unripened, and range in texture from thick and creamy to moist and curdy. Fresh-ripened cheeses are briefly ripened, slightly pungent, white in color and have no rinds.

Examples: Fresh cheeses -Italian mascarpone, ricotta and soft mozzarella. Fresh – ripened cheeses – Boucheron and Montrachet.


Type of cheese: soft-ripened (bloomy rind)

What it is: Rich, creamy cheeses that have a high butterfat content and semisoft consistency. Molds are applied to their surfaces, causing them to ripen from the outside in (the moldy exteriors are edible).

Examples: Brie, Camembertm and double and triple creams like St. Andre


Type of cheese: washed rind

What it is: These are the “stinky” cheeses. During the ripening process, they’re brushed, rubbed or submerged in a brine of salt water and wine, beer or brandy, which promotes a moldy exterior and a pungent scent and flavor.

Examples: Pont l’Eveque, Munster, and Liverot


Type of cheese: semi-hard

What it is: These are mild cheeses, that ideal for snacking or dessert. Some melt smoothly which makes them great for cooking – Bel Paese, Havarti, Mozzarella, Provolone and Gouda.

Examples: Morbier, Sainnt Nectaire, Tomme de Savoie


Type of cheese: hard

What it is: These hard cheeses grow more pungent and harden with age. 

Examples: Gruyere, Appenzeller, English-style Cheddar, Emmenthal, Jarlsberg, Manchego


Type of cheese: blue-veined

What it is: First these cheeses are sprayed or injected with mold spores and aged in caves or cellars, bluish-green veins marble the interiors of these intensely flavored and pungent cheeses.

Examples: Gorgonzola, Roquefort and Stilton

Posted by: / July 12, 2010

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