Published on May 11, 2016

How to Crush the Cheese Board Game: 7 Winning Plates

There’s nothing like a platter of yummy cheeses to make us swoon with delight. Typically a mixed bag (er, board) of tasty hunks of flavor, the cheese plate is a solid start to any meal (or party, or happy hour, or Netflix marathon...). 

Aged, soft, creamy, smelly — the endless varieties and and styles are right at home next to breads, jams, nuts and dried fruit. Along with charcuterie and big glasses of wine, this classic, easy-to-pair appetizer will never go out of style. Here are some of our favorite spots in the country winning at the cheese plate game.

GREAT CHEESE PLATES

1. STEAK & WHISKY (Los Angeles)

Photo provided by Steak & Whisky. Photo provided by Steak & Whisky.

Paired with nice glasses of red wine, the cheese board at Steak and Whisky in LA — piled high with Big Rock Blue, Humboldt Fog goat milk, Mixed Drum and Farmstead Reserve cheeses — makes an awesome starter for the table.

2. RN74 (San Francisco)

Photo provided by RN74. Photo provided by RN74.

Cow, goat, sheep and buffalo milk cheeses — available by the ounce and by the platter — are great matches for the cocktails, beers and wines on RN74’s happy hour menu in San Francisco.

3. BIN 36 (Chicago)

Photo provided by Bin 36. Photo provided by Bin 36.

With two dozen cheeses available, Bin 36 in Chicago offers some of the most unexpected varieties in town. Choose a few to create a flight, all served with house-made jam, crostini, Cabernet gelée and apple, and don’t forget the wine (available by the glass, bottle or flight) to wash them down.

4. LE VIRTU (Philadelphia)

Photo provided by Le Virtu. Photo provided by Le Virtu.

In traditional Italian style, Le Virtu in Philadelphia offers a cheese plate after your meal. From the “dolci” section of the menu, guests can choose a selection of artisanal Pecorino cheeses from Abruzzo’s Valle Scannese and Porta dei Parchi farms.

5. THE GANDER (New York City)

Photo provided by The Gander. Photo provided by The Gander. Photo by Evan Sung.

The Bar Room at The Gander in NYC offers an all-day menu featuring several cheeses, plus stellar charcuterie, to accompany their specialty drinks, beers and wines.

6. CROSSROADS KITCHEN (Los Angeles)

Photo provided by Crossroads Kitchen. Photo provided by Crossroads Kitchen.

At Mediterranean-inspired Crossroads Kitchen in Los Angeles, non-dairy delights take center stage on the Kite Hill Cheese Plate, which highlights assorted vegan cheeses, house-made jams and other goodies.

7. L'ESPALIER (Boston)

Photo provided by L’Espalier. Photo provided by L’Espalier.

Led by Maitre D’ and Fromager Louis Risoli, the cheese program at L’Espalier in Boston spotlights selections from around the world — England, Italy, France, Spain, Portugal, Australia and the U.S. — served at the peak of their ripeness, and offered a la carte or in flights of 10, 26 or even 42 selections!

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