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Grazing tables are elevating wedding cocktail hours everywhere by providing a colorful spread to feast on and mingle over.

It’s a grazing table, as the name implies! It’s similar to a buffet, but it’s been intended to be visually appealing and easy to pick and nibble at food for guests. It’s most commonly a table, but it could also be a large platter, wooden board, counter, or any other large, flat surface. Food items aren’t always contained on plates or bowls, but rather piled beautifully in stacks that spill, overlap, and tangle into one another, making it seem as good as it tastes. The most important thing to keep in mind is that this is organized chaos.

It’s appropriate for a wide range of corporate events, attendees, themes, and budgets, and it never fails to impress.

Usual food on a grazing table are shaved meats and cheeses, fresh fruits, crackers, fresh breads and sweet treats. It is arranged like a buffet but designed to make it easier for the guests to pick and nibble with. You can use fresh, seasonal food that fits the theme and ensure that the grazing table has a balance of ingredients, colour and texture. Make sure to avoid food that is big and messy to eat, food should be bite-sized and shouldn’t have to be cut by a knife. You can also put labels, mini flags or blackboards to let your guests know what they are eating.  

On a grazing table, you won’t find a chafing dish! It’s frequently brimming with finger foods, making it easier for attendees to mingle while nibbling. At room temperature, the meal should also keep well.

On grazing tables, cheese, fruit, and charcuterie boards and platters are usual, but you can have any type of food you desire, depending on your budget and theme. Breads, dips, breadsticks, crackers, raw vegetables, condiments, bite-sized finger sandwiches, sweet snacks, pretzels, fresh and dried fruit, almonds, olives, etc,. Here, the options are limitless. It’s so simple and straightforward – visitors simply select what they want to eat, how much they want to eat, and when they want to eat it! It gives your guests entire flexibility and allows them to enjoy the evening as they like rather than feeling compelled – especially for those with picky eaters!

A well-styled grazing table can have a tremendous visual impression on your event, stimulate conversations among attendees (they are always, always a talking point at every event we’ve served), and they’re also trendy and a fuss-free and delicious way to amuse people. A grazing table, on the other hand, encourages a more relaxed, laid-back, and convivial atmosphere, with visitors walking around the room and ‘hanging’ around the magnificent table of delectable food, chatting.

Setup is simple and low maintenance.

  • Instead of worrying about replenishing a chafing dish, you can spend more time with your guests.
  • Gives you a full-fledged eating experience.
  • Allows your guests to sample a little bit of everything
  • Allows you to be inventive and unique when it comes to your grazing table.

Cost of a grazing table depends on how many people you are going to feed and what’s on the grazing table, how intricate it is, the quality of the ingredients used, and the size of the table.. The Average price of a 5 ft table is from $100 to $150 that can feed 10 to 15 people. You can also have a per person grazing table basis, average cost is $15 to $40 per head with minimum order requirement. Buying in bulk is the key to keeping the expense of a grazing table cheap. There will be a lot of space to fill, so stocking up on extra crackers, olives, and vegetables will help visually fill the area without breaking the bank. You can then spend on higher-quality meats, cheeses, or dips.

There are few ways that can keep your grazing table cold, you can freeze the trays and bowls to be used to keep the food cold longer. Few ice packs around your grazing table will keep everything cold for a little while longer. Keep your food in the shade, you need to shield the food from the sun to keep it cool and fresh. Serving trays with an ice base, such as this one, are ideal. Large buckets or trays can also be used as “ice bases” on buffet tables. Fill an ice tray halfway with water. Then, to keep your food cool, nestle the serving bowls into the ice.

Knowing who, what, and where your event will take place will help you organize your grazing table. Setting up may take up to 3-4 hours depends on the booked grazing table. Estimate the number of people you’ll be serving, the size of the table you’ll be using, and the number of serving dishes and platters you’ll require. The more food or fillers you require, the larger the table. Select varied heights of serving platters, cake stands, tiered stands, wood boards, and bowls to create a lovely picture down the table. Longer grazing table may consume more time setting up, you need to also consider the unloading of the equipment that are to be used.

The cost of making a charcuterie board can widely differ according to the size and the budget of the customer. However, according to different surveys and research, a normal charcuterie board can cost from $50 to $150. The essential aspect to keep in mind is the size and the volume of the board. Moreover, if you want to make a cheap charcuterie board yourself, then it will cost you around $18.99 – $59.99. These are just a rough calculation when it comes to making your charcuterie boards. An amazing fact is that this is a one-time investment. A customer can use the same board unless they want to serve on different boards at different aspects of the functions. 

Making a charcuterie board can vastly differ with personal preferences. It also depends on the size of the board and the number of guests/parties for the specific occasion. However, making an epic charcuterie board needs a special amount of ingredients and an artistic level of placing different foods. The foods that are placed in an epic charcuterie board vary from season to season and from place to place. The recommended foods and ingredients to place in a charcuterie board are:-

  • Olive bruschetta
  • Vegetable bruschetta
  • Roasted peppers bruschetta
  • Black pepper dry-cured meats 
  • Sliced soft cheese
  • Good quality cheddar or parmesan cheese
  • Extra Virgin olive oil for dips
  • Different seasonings (Roasted garlic and parmesan, garlic pepper and tomato, sun-dried tomato and basil, rosemary and garlic)
  • Bread and crackers
  • Figs 
  • Almonds and cashews
  • Olives

Making a simple charcuterie board is easy compared to a charcuterie board served at large parties and occasions. The important aspect of making a small charcuterie board is ‘randomness’. It does not matter if you want to have selected items or delicate items placed on the charcuterie board. All that matters is to create a small and simple board using these foods and ingredients:

  • Nuts – Start by placing a few nuts in bowls (almonds, cashews, hazelnuts) 
  • Large cheese – Accompany the nuts by placing a large block of cheese ( parmesan, blue cheese)
  • Sliced cheese – Fill the other parts with sliced cheese (Goat cheese, brie)
  • Meats and veggies/fruits – Finally add meats such as salami, bacon and complement it with seasonal fruits and veggies. 

While serving Brie on a cheese platter, one has to keep in mind that the inside of a Brie should be soft and slightly bouncy, whereas, the outside of the brie should be firm. Another important factor is that there should be a cut around the edge of the brie wheel so that the guests could get the flavor and taste of each part of the cheese. Another most asked question is – How do you eat brie cheese? Traditionally, the brie cheese is served right before the dessert and can constitute a meal in itself. Taking a bite of the brie and having a good fruit red wine can do the magic!

There are two essential things to keep in mind before and while wrapping a charcuterie board. 

 

  • BEFORE WRAPPING :
                                        Store the foods and ingredients in the charcuterie board in the fridge before wrapping it. Meats and cheese need to be moist and well-preserved. This is an essential and mandatory step before wrapping the charcuterie boards.

     

  • WRAPPING A CHARCUTERIE BOARD:
                                                                    The best way to wrap a charcuterie board is to use plastic wrap or cling film. This is to keep the charcuterie board intact and air-tight. If plastics are used then it is recommended for people to use compostable or biodegradable plastic wraps. 

A cheese board should cost between $50 and $150 to put together. The cost will vary depending on the size and material of the board as well as the delicacies you plan to display. Depending on the quality, boards might cost anywhere from $18.99 to $69.99 and even more. Don’t worry; while the board is an investment, it is only a one-time cost. Unless you choose to serve your display on a new board every time, you won’t have to pay extra for each charcuterie board you put together. You also need to consider changing your price depending on delivery location, deposits, cancellation and request to change of utensils to eco-friendly ones. 

Here are some proposed prices based on online estimations to help you think about your pricing structure.

 

$25-$35 for a small charcuterie board (for 1-2 people).

 

$45 – $90 for a medium charcuterie board (for 3-5 people).

 

$85 – $150 for a large charcuterie board (8-10 people).

 

$700 – $1,000+ for a grazing table for 30 people

 

Please seek legal advice before entering into a client contract/service agreement with the terms and conditions you choose.

Rectangular blocks of cheese, such as our Havarti and Organic Sharp Cheddar, are available. Place the cheese face down on a cutting board and thinly slice into small rectangles. These little rectangles are delicious on their own, on a cracker, or with fruit.

If your cheese board has a lot of blocks, try chopping half of them in a different way to provide some visual interest. We like to cut the rectangle slice you prepared before diagonally through the centre, resulting in two cheese triangles.

To build the perfect board, place your cheese on your cheeseboard and surround it with crackers, jam, fruits, nuts, veggies, or other items.

Choose complete muscle cuts and wrapped meats when selecting meats. You might want to throw in some forcemeats as well. Whole-muscle cuts are kept whole and then chopped to serve. These meats are best served thinly sliced on a charcuterie board. Depending on the size, encased meats might be served whole or cut. Forcemeats are consistent meat and fat mixes that can give texture diversity to your charcuterie board. For the large circle slices, you can fold it into a tulips or triangle shapes that is arranged like a deck of cards so it can be layered easily on your food board. 

On top of your wine glass, pile the salami slices one on top of the other, with the first layer having the fewest pieces. For example, my initial layer consists of merely three overlapping chunks of beef.

The second row of meat should be layered in between the first three, resulting in around five overlapping pieces of meat.

The third, fourth, fifth, or sixth layer will repeat the process until the rose is the appropriate size.

You’ll want to push the salami slices firmly on the edge of the wine glass to keep it in place.

To make a rose, turn the wine glass and meat over onto your presentation board.

Keep the glass in place until you’re ready to show off your final product.

SEARCH YOUR REFRIGERATOR:

Before you go to the store, have a check in your refrigerator and pantry to see what you already have. This is the ideal time to use any leftover cheese blocks, olives or pickles, almonds, jams, or other suitable foods. You’ll put together a delectable board while also cleaning out your fridge.

SELECT SEASONAL PRODUCTS:

Make sure your charcuterie board has some fresh ingredients. Fresh fruits and vegetables, such as strawberries, pears, grapes, sugar snap peas, and radishes, can be found at the farmers market.

USE THE DELIVERY SERVICE AT THE GROCERY STORE:

Purchase small quantities of meats (such as salami) or cheeses from your local grocery store deli. On a charcuterie board, variety is crucial. At the grocery store deli counter, you may get small quantities of a variety of goods at a reasonable price.

CHECK THE ENDS-AND-PIECES BASKET AT THE CHEESE COUNTER:

A “cheese ends” bin can be seen at some cheese shops and grocery stores (with a cheese counter), selling small pieces of cheese left over from larger blocks. This bin is great for picking up a variety of cheeses – generally 4 or 5 for less than $10.00.

INCLUDE YOUR FRIENDS IN THE PROCESS:

More diversity is a good thing when it comes to a fantastic charcuterie board. Consider making your get-together a potluck if you’re having visitors around. Request that each guest bring a meat, cheese, fruit paste, or olives for a charcuterie board.

When you invite friends to help, your charcuterie platter will be more varied, your friends will be able to contribute, and you will pay less. It’s a win-win situation!

MAKE IT AT HOME:

Consider creating some of your charcuterie board components yourself if you have the time.

Begin with a large piece of paper. The one with edges is the most convenient to use.

Place the bowls first, followed by the brie cheese.

Fill bowls with fruit spread and a variety of nuts.

Increase the size of the crackers.

The largest components, such as strawberries, huge round crackers, and babybel cheese, should be added last.

A segment of medium-sized products, such as sliced cheese and smaller crackers, should be included.

Toss in the meat. Simply fold each salami and ham piece into quarters to make meat fans.

Blackberries and red raspberries should be used to fill the gaps.

Fill in the gaps with smaller things such as cheese and summer sausage.

Finally, add the tiniest objects, such as crackers.

Serve right away.

 Arrange larger things first on a fruit and cheese platter, especially anything in containers like bowls of olives, small jars of jam, or a ramekin of honey.

 

Place the cheeses you’ve chosen beside foods that go well with them. Brie, for instance, could be seen with a little dish of honeycomb. I like to arrange the cheeses on the board in different places so that they aren’t too close together, and I keep a cheese knife next to each pick so that the flavours don’t mix.

 

 Place crackers or pieces of a crusty French baguette alongside the cheese. Avoid going overboard with them because they can take up a lot of space on your fruit and cheese tray. Instead, I’ll keep these in a separate bowl or plate next to the cheese board for bread and crackers. Keep in mind that as these things run out, you can quickly refill them while your guests are enjoying the fruit and cheese buffet.

 

 If you’re adding cured meats like salami or summer sausage, which I like to do for contrast and something salty and savoury to break up the richness of too much fruit, charcuterie should come next.

 

 Larger fruits, such as cut apples, pears, persimmons, pomegranate segments, and so on, can then be added. Your board should be starting to look rather crowded at this time!


 Smaller fruits, such as grape clusters, berries, dried fruit, almonds, and dark chocolate squares, can be used to fill in the gaps. If there is any vacant space on the board, fresh rosemary sprigs are another fantastic choice for something beautiful.

Taralli wrapped in prosciutto with goat cheese and truffle honey:

Wrapping other foods in prosciutto slices on a charcuterie board is a fun way to include prosciutto di Parma. Because sliced prosciutto is so pliable, it may be moulded into a variety of forms. Wrap a slice of an Italian taralli biscuit around a dollop of goat cheese and use the middle as a kind of seat. For an earthy, rich, and umami-packed experience, drizzle truffle honey on top.

 

Skewers with Prosciutto, Mozzarella, and Spiced Olives:

Skewers are another creative way to serve prosciutto di Parma; they’re visually appealing and simple to pick up. To make a delicious stack of Italian treats, place a slice of meat, a small ball of mozzarella cheese, and a seasoned olive on each wooden skewer.

 

Brie Cheese, Arugula, and Balsamic Fig Glaze on Prosciutto-Topped Crostini:

Rich, creamy, and soft cheeses are the perfect accompaniments to this Italian meat. Drizzle balsamic fig glaze over toasted crostini bread with brie cheese and fresh arugula. You’ll be in charcuterie heaven with this combination of textures and the five basic tastes (sour, sweet, savoury, bitter, and salty).

 

Asparagus wrapped in crisp prosciutto:

Cook asparagus spears in boiling water for two minutes before wrapping them in crispy prosciutto slices to get your veggies in. The goal is to give the prosciutto di Parma some warmth and crunch—just don’t overcook it!

 

Melon with Prosciutto and Burrata Cheese:

Although it may appear to be an unusual pairing at first, prosciutto and melon are frequently served together! The melon’s sweet, mellow flavour contrasts beautifully with the meat’s rustic, salty texture. As the centrepiece, place a large ball of burrata cheese in the centre and surround it with sliced prosciutto and melon slices. The rich, creamy middle of the burrata will leak out when cut, adding another layer of flavour and texture.

When moving a board, we place heavy-duty foil underneath it before beginning to construct it.

Then we construct the board, wrapping any serving bowls in plastic wrap to keep the contents contained, bringing the foil up over the assembled board, and securing it all around the edges.

It’s significantly easier to carry a board with a bevelled edge to help everything stay in place when moving from one place to another. If you’re using a flat charcuterie board and need to move your board, I recommend bringing your ingredients in airtight containers and assemble the board upon arrival. When you have an occasion like this, you want to keep your ingredients as simple as possible.

A platter is a huge piece of serving plate that is used to serve food. It’s a tray that’s used to display and serve food to people. It can have the form of an oval, a round, a rectangular, or a square. Metal, ceramic, or plastic can all be used. Silver platters, both plain and elaborate, are fashioned of or coated with silver for more formal settings or occasions, and vintage examples are extremely expensive. Gold was used to make very valuable and ceremonial platters.

It is  a main dish served on a platter with one or more side dishes, such as a salad or french fries, in restaurant lingo. A course that usually consists of a variety of items served on the same plate. 

The Colombian bandeja paisa, Indian thali, and Arabic mixed-meat platters are also notable platters.

When it comes to choosing protein, make sure your board includes:

Something entire: When you think of charcuterie board meats, you generally think of whole meats preserved in their natural state. Thinly sliced prosciutto, bresaola, and jamn are some examples.

Something smooth: Smooth meats, sometimes known as force meats, are ideal for spreading on crusty bread. Paté and canard rillettes are two examples.

Something cured: These thicker meats will give your board more substance. Salami, Spanish chorizo, rosette de Lyon, French saucisson, cured sausage, and hunter’s sausage are all examples.

Something dry:Finally, dry meats will lend a savoury, smoky flavour to your dish. Bacon and pancetta are two examples.

Meat: You’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to meat options. You might opt for the saltiness of cured meats (prosciutto, porchetta, mortadella, chorizo, speck, salami, sausage…) or the melting softness of cooked meats (pate, mousse, rillettes, terrine, boudin, ham…).

Cheese: Similar to meat, you should diversify your cheese selection to ensure that your guests get the whole experience. Parmigiano reggiano, gouda, goat’s cheese, gruyere, blue cheese, or brie are all good choices. A blend of these would provide a good balance of hard, soft, creamy, and medium-hard cheese.

Bread and crackers: These are ideal for allowing your visitors to construct their own bruschetta, but they’re also necessary for enjoying pâté, mousse, rillettes, or creamy cheeses. As a result, we recommend getting a pair of baguettes, as well as toasted baguette pieces and crackers.

Veggies: You may use any classic appetiser vegetables such as olives, roasted peppers, pickles, or asparagus in this dish.

Dips: Hummus, tapenade, mustard, or our La Fresca® Guacamole are all good options for covering a slice of bread with a savoury spread.

Fruits and jams: Although they aren’t considered a must by some, grapevines, figs, blueberries, melons, cherries, dried fruits, and any of your favourite fruit jams would be a nice addition to your board, whether you’re attempting to master the science of sweet and salty or just want something sweet.

Drinks: Pairing drinks with charcuterie is more of an art than a science. When it comes to the perfect match, it should be about complimenting or opposing one another, and your palate should be the judge. Bring a wide variety of drinks for your visitors to pick from, such as gin, scotch whisky, red wine, cocktails, and juice.

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