Here at Anchor & Den our famous charcuterie boards are the showstopper in a lot of our events. From our signature events like El Mercat – Nit de Tapes on Thursday evenings, to Boulangerie Brunch on Sunday afternoons, to even outside community events like the Taste of Cayman; eyes are always on our boards!
Did you know, the word charcuterie originates from the French words for “meat” and “cooked” — and let’s face it, the meats are the stars of this tasty show. Meats like a rich Lomo or a spicy Chorizo paired well with fresh bread, cheese, and fruits really are the ultimate feast.
Constructing a top-notch charcuterie board will always win over even the fussiest of eaters at your get-togethers. Getting the right amount of flavours, textures and variety is key to a successful board! We spoke to A&D’s Chef de Partie, Chef Pedro who is the main man at our El Mercat – Nit de Tapes evening and he’s been awesome enough to give us the low down and must haves to turn a standard smorgasbord into the ultimate mouthwatering experience!
Pedro: “You can hardly go wrong when it comes to selecting gourmet cheeses for your charcuterie board, however a variety of textures looks as appealing as it tastes. Pairing your meats and cheese together is what will really elevate your sophistication to your guests. When it comes to pairing the cheese and the meat you have to consider your balance on flavour for example you don’t want to pair a blue cheese with Ibérico ham as it would overpower the flavour of the meat and you really want that meat to shine! Instead you would pair it with a lighter cheese like a soft Mahon or drunken goat this will complement the meat. When it comes to spicy meats, like Chorizo, Spiannata or Salame Ventricina, I would pair it with a Parmesan cheese, Pecorino or even Garrotxa as these flavours go so well together and it’s a great variety of shapes and colours.”
“Also a great addition to your board is fruits, there are so many things you can choose from. I recommend some fresh grapes, dates or fresh figs to contrast the salty/savoury taste of the meat. You can always play around with what's seasonal as well, sweet red apple or pear is always a great combo. And as an accompaniment, add mixed olives, honey, pickles, marmalades or sweet spread – my favourite is fig marmalade. Something that cannot be missed on a charcuterie board is the bread. A great variety of breads is something that would make it or break it when presenting the board. Olive focaccia, ciabattas, sourdough and French baguette are my top choices.”
*Chef tip: Be sure to put out cheese knives so guests can easily help themselves to the spread* (check out Anthropologie they have a great selection of cheese knifes.)
Your Shopping List
You need the perfect cheese board, something that suits your personal style and also is functional for your party size.
We recommend Anthropologie or Crate and Barrel for a good quality cheese board.
Then for the good stuff, if you live on island you can purchase majority of these items at Kirks Market in George Town.
Small Finger Pickles
Roasted garlic for your bread is always necessary (everything is better with garlic)
There you have it, the perfect charcuterie board! All you need now is to pair it with a few good bottles of wine and you have a party! Talking of parties keep your eyes peeled in the month of September as we have a few more tips coming your way to really step up your party game.