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“Food is a universal language that we all speak. It’s communal. It feeds us, moves us, and can create a memory that lasts a lifetime. For Cortney LaCorte, founder and owner, making delicious food look beautiful is an art form that has long been her love language.” Family FIRST, Cheese second. Today, I sit down with my dear friend Cortney to discuss, that’s right, ALL. THINGS. CHEESE. We discuss how to curate the perfect cheese board, how Cortney started her business (Cheese Gal) and we even bust myths on cheese and pregnancy.
We also cover –
- Cortney’s love for entertaining + her biggest inspiration
- Her love story with her husband, Chris LaCorte
- Her very first cheese board order
- The business side to Cheese Gal
- Curating the perfect name – Nashville Cheese Gal + then to just Cheese Gal
- How she curated her own store front in downtown Nashville
Don’t worry – We took all your Q+A questions as well 🙌🏼 Can’t wait for you to listen!
YOUR FAQ QUESTIONS
What are some affordable places to get good quality ingredients
- Trader Joes (Unexpected Cheddar,
- Kroger (Murries Cheese)
Check out her Trader Joes highlight here.
What are the best items to splurge on?
- Always splurge on the cheese
- Humbled Fog is your CHEESE Splurge – your gateway into venturing out (Whole Foods)
How do you decide what cheese go well together and what to pair them with?
- You always want to think in contrast flavor (Salty + Sweet or Spicy + Sweet)
Is there a type of cheese that should be on every board?
- Yes, an aged Cheddar
- Kroger – Murries Brand
- Trader Joes – Unexpected Chedder
- Prarie Breeze
How can you do a COVID friendly board?
- Little app plates or little boxes – single serve
Best tips for beginners –
- Don’t be intimidated
- Start with a base, start with your cheese, then bowls – start there
- Look at Youtube tutorials or accounts for inspiration
Best Places to buy cheese boards
- Crate + Barrel is my favorite
How long does a cheese board last once it’s made?
- Always best the day off
- If you want to pre make, leave off the crackers + nuts – wrap in seran wrap
+ You could prep the day before
What cheese pairs well with Rose?
- Fresh Goat Cheese
How to deal with allergy/dietary restrictions
- It gets hard with nuts – We are not a nut free kitchen
- There are so many gluten free options for crackers
How to make a pregnancy safe cheese board
- Make sure it is pasteurized – BUT ALWAYS ask your doctor
How do you organize everything? All your props.
- I have a cheese room in my house, I have 100 or more cheese boards and little bowls in my this room. I love them.
Any advice in as a rookie in the charcuterie business?
- Price your board accordingly – make sure you’r making money
- Make sure you are being compensated for your time
- It’s very important that you get your licensing, insurance, etc
How to make a two person board?
- Rule of thumb you want to serve between 2-3 oz of cheese per person
- For Two – I’ll put 3 different cheeses on there, fresh fruit (always go seasonal), little bit of garnish
- I love having a variety of cheese on a tray
What are you two favorite cheese to put together?
+ St. Andre – Triple Cream Cheese with fig jam + Prosciutto with honey and then something salty afterwards
What cracker is the best cracker?
- Olive Oil Cracker
- Fruit Crisp
How to have your board board look full?
- Find filler
Name 3 Cheese on a board
- Aged Cheddar
- Creamy Brie
What are the best kind of knives to use to cut cheese?
- Prep – Chef’s Knife for hard cheese.
- Cheese wire for soft cheese
How has traveling inspired our board?
- I love the bodega vibe – with fresh baguettes + cheeses
- I absolutely love Napa + Paris
- I love French cheese
What is your favorite board you’ve ever done?
- Kacey Musgraves
- I did a Rainbow inspired cheese board – Check it out here.
Be sure to follow along with Cortney here!