Tuesday, October 20, 2009


New to France? Here's a quick and easy guide to  serving & cutting cheese at the table.

The temperature: Bring cheese to room temperature 30 minutes to one hour before serving. Set out no more than will be eaten and cover loosely. Remember to quickly refrigerate any unserved cheese.

The knife: A two-tipped, curved blade. Use more than one if serving stronger cheeses with milder ones. When sliced, cheese is pricked with tips to transfer to plate.

 The rule: Share the rind. Cut cheese so that each portion has some rind. The last slice served should not have more rind than cheese. A plus: cheese flavor isn't uniform, it has more tang near the rind.

The order: Mild cheeses first, followed by stronger. Don't mingle aromas, keep different cheeses well apart on platter and plate.

The right slice:  
  • Small cheeses, round or square: cut in halves, thirds or quarter 

  • Cylindrical or log cheeses: cut in rounds

  • Flat cheese, round or squares & pyramids:  cut in triangles, just as for a cake, picking knife point in center of cheese

  • Firm cheeses, laid flat: cut slices lengthwise if rind is only on one end, crosswise if rind runs along parallel edges 

  • Blue-veined cheeses: cut in triangles radiating from center of the lower end of the wedge, the first cut will be a corner

The next post: The Right Slice: More on the hows and whys of cheese cutting rules. Un art de vivre.
The Right Slice: Cheese Tips

Text & photos ©2009 P.B. Lecron


  1. Well done !
    Being able to slice cheese properly is really a sign of education... the French Way !
    I like your blog : elegant, clear, well documented and attractive pictures.
    Infos about some unknown (and better known) spots in France in my blog :
    All the best

  2. Tous mes fromages--ô--excusez-moi, mes hommages!

  3. A good story

    GK Chesterton: “The poets have been mysteriously silent on the subject of cheese.”

    Voila: www.tastingtoeternity.com. This book is a poetic view of 30 of the best loved French cheeses with an additional two odes to cheese. Recipes, wine pairing, three short stories and an educational section complete the book.

    From a hectic life in New York City to the peace and glories of the French countryside lead me to be the co-founder of www.fromages.com. Ten years later with the words of Pierre Androuet hammering on my brain:

    “Cheese is the soul of the soil. It is the purest and most romantic link between humans and the earth.”

    I took pen and paper; many reams later with the midnight oil burning Tasting to Eternity was born and self published.

    I believe cheese and wine lovers should be told about this publication.


  4. this is wonderful! check out my blog and see what led me to you!


    best, Jerri

  5. Dommages, euh!... Hommages acceptés, mais très exceptionnellement parce que c'est vous : on n'adresse les hommages qu'aux dames et je n'entre pas dans cette honorable et séduisante catégorie.
    Merci de ce que vous faites pour faire connaître la France.

  6. Yes, thank you! I do like to take advantage of what we call in English, my "literary license!" All the best, PBL

  7. I love to prepare some recipe that contain many cheese. I think the cheese, always give to the meals a speciall flavor. So when i cook i usually add many cheese what ever i am cooking and i love it. simply delicious.
    Actually i was looking information about how to buy viagra but i was entertainment reading this blog.

  8. I must to say the cheese drives me crazy, I approach every time for eat cheese and I add in my recipes all the time. I read some days ago the cheese have many properties and vitamin. The most important thing is the potassium and calcium the cheese contain. I am sure that When i buying my house through costa rica homes for sale i will prepare a dinner for all my friends and I will add many cheese. That will be wonderful.