Spooky Halloween Wine & Cheese Board
Our favorite holiday in October is just around the corner and we wanted to share with you some ideas to create a spooky Halloween wine and cheese board.
Between the witches, goblins and bats there’s still plenty of fun in a bottle of wine and a decadent, Halloween inspired cheese board for your friends & family. I’ll be honest, if I’m hosting any sort of gathering; I always plan on a cheese board. If you just stick to a few key principles then they’re easy to assemble, guests love them and you can tailor it for any holiday with simple decor changes.
Suggestions for a Spooky Halloween Wine and Cheese Board
For a small size dinner party, I stick with 3 different varieties of cheese. Too many options can tend to overwhelm the guests. My go-to favorites are manchego, goat cheese, cheddar and sometimes a nice soft cheese like a brie. This time of year there are great chèvre logs available topped with cranberries, apricots, etc. Anytime I see these, I typically grab them because they’re so delicious!
Similar to selecting cheese, I usually select 3 options for the board. I always, always have prosciutto on hand and typically pick a few different types of hard salami like soppressata or capocollo. Keep it to only a single option if you’re choosing meat with a heavy flavor like peppered so it doesn’t overtake the cheese board.
Olives & Nuts:
These are often the items that guests will snack on throughout the night. Since it’s Halloween themed, I selected olives and nuts that had a darker hue like kalamata and black olives, along with spicy roasted pecans.
Since they’ll be lots of candy available during the Halloween season, provide a selection of fresh fruits for guests to nibble on. In sticking with the spooky theme, I suggest figs, red and purple grapes and even pomegranates. Slice a few open for table decor and also scoop out the arils, the red jewels inside the pomegranate, so they’re easily enjoyed.
A really good, spooky cheese board needs to have one or two spreads available for the crackers or bread. I typically always go for a fig jam, but also really love a sour cherry spread and the basic sweetness of wildflower honey.
Crackers & Bread:
Though not as important as the meats and cheese, the selection of crackers and bread plays a crucial role in completing a well-rounded cheese board. I suggest having a few varieties of crackers (one gluten free), as well as either Italian breadsticks or a loaf of French bread. Even better that right now there are tasty cracker blends like fig and rosemary that everyone will really enjoy!
In addition, I try to always include a little sampling of dark chocolate to nibble on and garnish the board with fresh herbs like rosemary or sage.
Serve with a slightly chilled Kendall-Jackson Vitner’s Reserve Pinot Noir with its notes of cherry, strawberry and raspberry along with hints of vanilla and a slight toasted finish. It compliments the vast flavors present in the wine and cheese board and plays well with our dark Halloween theme.
As for decorations, keep them spooky but tasteful. You want your Halloween wine and cheese board with carefully selected meats, cheese, fruits and crackers to be the star of the show after all. I suggest linens in black or charcoal grey, black or dark wood cutting boards and tableware, as well as an assortment of candles and serving accessories with just a handful of playful Halloween accents. Of course, toss in some mini pumpkins for extra ambiance. Don’t forget to use parts of your cheese board like the fruit and olives for added decor!
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For more food and wine pairing tips, visit the Entertaining section of our website.
Written by Kristin Mansky of Modish & Main