Move over cheeseboard, and make room for the grazing table. With its self-serve, better-looking-than-a-buffet-but-still-a-buffet look, throw it together with these 9 simple ideas.
The next time you host a dinner party, consider setting up a grazing table.
You make all of it ahead of item, and guests can serve themselves.
What is a grazing table?
It's basically a massive feeding trough turned fancy.
Here are 9 simple ideas to create a stunning grazing table of your one.
#1 Remove any white spaces
This is really the secret to creating a breathtaking grazing table.
As you will see from the following pictures, having all the food mixed up, bunched up, and squeezed together makes the table uber visually appealing.
#2 Add big bowls of colorful salads
These are dramatic and so easily prepared ahead of time. Serve in large bowls and disperse throughout the table.
#3 Add height
If the table is completely flat, the look falls flat too.
Use any combination of shoeboxes covered with cloth or cutting boards propped up on top of cans.
#4 Lay food on top of food
That seems obvious, but food can look lonely on a plate all by itself. A plank of smoked salmon is accentuated by other seafood and meats on top of it.
#5 Add flowers and shrubbery
Large flowers and any other green shrubs sprinkled on top of the table further the visual interest.
#6 Skip the fruit bowl
Splay cut fruit rather than chopping it up into pieces in a bowl.
#7 Pile mussels on the half shell into a bowl
So often, I've seen mussels on the half shell spread out on to a plate. They look much cozier here piled up in a bowl.
#8 Make a cold mess
It's not a hot mess; it's a cold mess.
Anything that can sit at room temperature (cheese, fruit, meat, cookies, breadsticks) look great jumbled all together.
#9 Set a simple table
Since the grazing table is so busy, a simple white table clothed dining table with minimal flowers provides a nice contrast.
Don't forget the wine
Feature bottles of wine, jugs of water, and other beverages on a separate table, so you don't create a bottleneck at the grazing table.
Finally, in case you don't think it goes together, it does.
The grazing table makes great bedfellows of food and people too that gather around it.
More Food & Wine Pairing Ideas
Do you love pairing food with wine? Spread the ♥, and please share!