Organizing a wine and cheese party is a great excuse to invite all of your friends over and enjoy a good glass of wine together. It can be both an opportunity to share your favorite wine with other people, as well as to try out new ones and discuss them as a group. This type of event might seem intimidating, but with our tips, you are sure to organize a successful and sophisticated party!
#1 Pick out the wines
If you are wondering how many kinds of wines to buy, we recommend getting at least four bottles. Offer your guests both red and white options, as well as dry and sweet varieties for every taste. You can choose wines that you already know and love or read reviews online of unfamiliar types.
If this seems too overwhelming, you can choose a country or region and test out multiple wines from there. If you make it a recurring event, you can transform your parties into a tour of the world.
Note: For a themed party, choose music from that region to play in the background for a more authentic atmosphere.
#2 Pick out the cheese
Picking out cheese can be just as confusing as picking out the wines. We recommend aiming for diversity in terms of texture and flavor. Select at least one type of cheese from each of the following categories:
● fresh and soft cheeses (like cottage cheese, camembert, and brie);
● crumbly (like goat cheese, feta, and blue cheese);
● semi-firm (like cheddar, gouda, edam, and reblochon);
● firm (like parmesan, romano, gruyère, and Beaufort).
#3 Pick out the accompaniments
Even though it is called a wine and cheese party, there are other foods that must be present on the table for a variety of flavors. So, after you pick the wine and cheese, add these to your shopping list as well:
● something sweet (like honey, jam, and dried fruits);
● something salty (like salmon, prosciutto, salami, and olives);
● fresh fruit (like grapes and other seasonal fruits);
● nuts (like walnuts, almonds, pecans, and pistachios);
#4 Glassware and other necessities
The fanciest of parties have a separate glass for each type of wine. However, for a laid-back get-together with friends and family, offering two glasses to each guest is more than enough. Make sure you have enough white wine and red wine glasses for the group, as well as some backup ones in case of breakage. Other necessities for a successful wine and cheese party include corkscrew, decanter, cheese board, cheese knives, coasters, napkins, and small plates.
#5 Label your wines and cheeses
Not everyone will be familiar with your assortment, so it’s best to create labels for your wines and cheeses. For the wines, you can go beyond just writing the name. Add information like the taste, region of origin, and bouquet so that your guests know what they are drinking.
#6 Offer suggestions for serving
As a general rule, you want to let people experiment and not offer unsolicited advice. However, if someone asks for guidance, you can recommend light-bodied white wines for the soft cheese and red wines for complex flavors like blue cheese. Pair bland cheeses with fresh-tasting wines and potent ones with full-bodied reds that balance each other out.