Why should you put time and effort into creating the perfect Artisan Irish Cheeseboard? Well, cheese is one of our favourite foods! It evokes images of cosy nights in by the fire, long evenings in the summer sunshine – or elongated Christmas lunches indulging in dairy filled goodness!
So, if you’re entertaining friends, family, work colleagues or even ‘someone special’– it’s a given that serving cheese is going to win you some brownie points, and leave you with some very happy guests.
What is certain, is that our selection of Irish cheese is extraordinary. So with a tiny bit of advice, and a little bit of thought, you are sure to curate the perfect Artisan Irish Cheeseboard!
So without further ado, here are our top tips for creating an Artisan Irish Cheeseboard to be proud of!
- 1. Whatever anyone tells you about the timing or the manner in which cheese ‘should’ be served, ignore them: do it the way you want. Serving cheese before the dessert? That’s cool. Want your artisan irish cheeseboard as the grand finale to an excellent meal? Sounds brilliant to us. Thinking of serving cheese themed dishes throughout the evening? We’re so on board with that!
- 2. Make it exciting. Try to put at least one cheese on your cheeseboard that is a bit out of the ordinary. Ask us for help – and we will be more than happy to direct you towards what is new to us, or what we think is especially good at the moment. Prepare to wow those ‘foodie’ guests!
- 3. For a traditional cheeseboard, we recommend serving three or five cheeses. Aiming for a variety of different styles. Dazzle your guests taste buds with different tastes, colours and textures. There are no hard rules, so feel free to deviate. But generally a well-balanced board would include a few of the following types: A ‘Hard Cheese’ such as a cheddar like Mount Leinster, or a comte style like Saint Gall. A softier, sqidgier cheese such as the Wicklow Bån Brie or Ireland’s answer to Camembert – The Cavanbert. And a blue cheese like our local favourite Young Buck or Cashel Blue’s Sheep’s Milk Blue, Crozier Blue. For those of us who like to splash out on the extra two cheese’s on our Artisan Irish Cheeseboard – we personally like to add a goats and a sheeps, for balance and interest. You can not go far wrong with a soft goats cheese such as St. Tola’s Ash Covered Log. And the addition of an aged manchago like hard sheeps like Cais Na Tire, adds another tempting hard.
- 4. Maybe you’d like to pick a theme? Choosing your selections for your artisan Irish cheeseboard can be tough. An easy way to narrow it down is to select a theme you’d like to stick too. Perhaps you just want one cheese of each milk type. A cow’s, sheep’s and goat’s? Or maybe you want your cheese to come from as close to home as possible, and choose to showcase our range Northern Irish cheese?
- 5. Do a bit of research. Find out a little bit about the cheese you are serving. Any experience is amplified by the host being a little bit knowledgeable. And we are here to help you gather that knowledge! You don’t need to be an expert on your chosen cheese’s. But if you can tell your guests that you selected Young Buck Blue Cheese, for example, because it is made by Mike Thompson of Mike’s Fancy Cheese in Newtownards – using raw milk from a single heard in Clandeboye. You’ll appear very wise indeed! And it’s always good to be able to shout about the producers – they deserve the love.
- 6. Please, please, please, allow the cheese to come up to room temperature before they are served. Cheese is at its best at around 21c . So whip it outta the fridge a couple of hours before serving. Trust us!
- 7. When serving, remove all packaging of course. But, if you have whole cheeses, don’t remove the rinds. We think the rinds can be one of the tastiest bits – but some people don’t… So leave the decision of what to eat to your guests.
- 8. Serve with a selection of knives. One for each cheese. It’s not important to have fancy cheese knives ( though very nice ) however it is important to have a knife for each cheese, to avoid mixing flavours. Or spreading blueness!
- 9. As a guide, allow for between 80g and 120g per person depending on the appetite of your guests. ( Here at Indie Fude our portions are more in the region of 200g! )
- 10. Make sure your artisan Irish cheeseboard is going to be displayed on a tray or platter big enough to display all of your selected cheeses – without them touching each other. This not only showcases the cheese in it’s best light – but also allows for artfully displayed accompaniments too! Add fruit, nuts or cheese biscuits for added vavavoom!
- 11. And finally – chooseyour accompaniments carefully. There are a multitude of stunning chutneys and crackers out there, so try not be overwhelmed. For something that will complement most cheeses, pick something will a little sweetness alongside a little acidity. Try Deli Muru Fig Chutney if you lean to the side of sweetness, or Sheridans Onion Marmalade for a touch more punch!
Are you now inspired to piece together your own Artisan Irish Cheeseboard? Or does it all sound a little overwhelming? Perhaps you just don’t have the time, or the inclination to design your own cheeseboard? Our Irish Cheeseboard could be the perfect solution!
Worried about having cheese left over? Don’t panic. We have a whole array of recipes designed especially for you! Check out our awesome recipe for ‘Irish Cheeseboard Macaroni Cheese‘.