I love a good charcuterie, although, before I met Jade, I had no idea what one was. Once I found out the definition, I realized I had been making variations of the treat for ages. Traditionally a charcuterie is a collection of meats assorted on a platter or plate, but the more modern definition can be a selection of antipasto or cured, pickled and preserved foods. I had been throwing salami, cheese and olives on a plate for years when I was a kid but never knew there was a technical term for this incredible treat.
As soon as Jade and I found out that Cheese & Crack were making a brick and mortar shop, we couldn’t wait for it to open so we could devour all their delicacies.
The Cheese & Crack team have been making their assorted snack accoutrements for a few years now since starting out with their food cart off of Southeast Hawthorne. If you have never seen their witty and hilarious kickstarter video they made when they were first starting their project, you are missing out. Their new brick and mortar location is off of East Burnside on Southeast 28th Avenue. Their space has a raw, semi-industrial vibe with a mellow modern shop feel. It’s perfect for those days when we just want to sit down, nibble on a variety of tasty treats, and enjoy each others company… which I guess this is pretty much every single day.
The fare they serve is all locally sourced and the crackers are made in house. All of their Cheese & Crack Plates come with their housemade rustic butter crackers, savory oatmeal cookies, baguette, olives, cornichons, dijon mustard, honey and a chocolate ganache. We ordered two plates where you get to select the cheese and fruit side: the first included the La Mariposa “Chubut” and Cana De Oveja (my personal favorite) with honey glazed peaches. The second had salami and Cypress Grove Fromage Blanc with a marionberry jam. Both were absolutely fantastic and all paired exquisitely with the accompanying standard sides.
Obviously the charcuterie style plates I made when I was a kid don’t even begin to scrape the surface as to how masterful Cheese & Crack puts together their plates. I have a feeling we are going to end up spending way too much time here…