Monday, 14 March 2016  • Recipes,

Spring is officially in session, and here in the Wine Country that means more fresh ingredients, chilled white wine, and of course sunshine! We're kicking off this Spring with a Charcuterie board that perfectly embodies the taste of this beautiful season, along with all the tips and tricks you'll need to replicate it for your next picnic, dinner party, or hungry Sunday afternoon. Enjoy!


Goat cheese: For this board, we've selected a semi-hard goat cheese without any additional added flavors. Made from goat's milk, goat cheese has a characteristically tart flavor while still remaining relatively mild and extremely easy to pair. If you've got more of a sweet tooth, try selecting a goat cheese that's flavored with honey, apple cinnamon, or blueberry to mix it up a little.

Brie cheese: Brie, a soft French cheese, is truly a great addition to any Charcuterie board as it can be a staple all year 'round. It's an especially lovely fit in this spread, as you can make it sweet by pairing it with the apricot preserves, or give it a salty kick on top or some prosciutto.

Havarti cheese: With its buttery and somewhat sweet natural flavors, this semi-soft Danish cheese really holds its own amidst the other items on this board. Try to select an older aged Havarti, like we did here, for a much richer taste and texture.

Prosciutto: This cured Italian ham is sliced extremely thin, making it easy to fold up on top of bread or a cracker, or even wrap around a small bit of cheese or an almond. Like most cured meats, prosciutto is very salty and is best in small portions paired with other fresh items.

Salami: With all of the sweet cheese and fruit options on this Charcuterie board, we doubled down on the salty cured meats and selected a standard salami, sliced paper thin.

Strawberries: Here in California, strawberry season in kicks into high gear around April every year, and we could not be happier to wake up to a bowl of bright and juicy berries every morning. So of course, we had to include them in this spread! Try stacking a strawberry slice or two with a bit of brie cheese and honey -- trust us, you won't regret it.

Apricot preserves: Fresh, in-season apricots start hitting the shelves at your local market in April, and what better way to enjoy them than as a sweet and tangy preserve paired with your favorite meats and cheeses?

Almonds: A little crunch helps to round out any cheese plate. Almond trees are dormant through Winter as they prepare for the new year's crop, making Spring the perfect time to enjoy a handful.

Water Crackers: These crackers are a staple when you make any dip or cheese plate as they are extremely mild in flavor, lending themselves to the sweet or savory items you have stacked on top. You want to make sure the flavors are never clashing, and water crackers are a great and safe bet with just about any meat or cheese pairing.

Baguette: No cheese board is complete without a crispy and delicious fresh baked baguette, thinly sliced and toasted just enough to hold your heartier toppings. So stack away!

Honey: Last but certainly not least, we firmly believe that honey has a place in every Charcuterie board. It pairs perfectly with jams as well as sweet or mild cheeses, in this case brie and goat cheese.

Charcuterie boards are so easy to throw together last minute that they've become a party staple that can be enjoyed by everyone. We can't wait to see your take on the Spring Charcuterie, so feel free to share some pictures or tips of your own!