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A Tasty Tray

Charcuterie Guru Jess Nixon's Tips and Tricks for a Holiday Spread

Nothing delights the senses quite like a well-made charcuterie tray - the pleasing colors and delicious scents, the crunch of vegetables and nuts, the creamy cheeses - but such a spread can be intimidating to create. 

Charcuterie guru Jess Nixon from A Tasty Tray has skills, as evidenced by her gorgeous Instagram. “People ask how I do it, and I don’t know! I never knew I was creative in this way. I’ve always been a cook and a host.” However, a visual artist was born after heavy snow left only meat and cheese in her house. Now, she has tips and tricks to help your holiday spread.

  • SHOP WITH THE SENSES. “Look for salty, sweet, creamy, and crunchy. I like to add a spicy element. Try fig jam or spicy honey. People always ask where the flavors come from with my grazing tables, and it’s everything mixed together.” 

  • GO WITH THE FLOW.  “It doesn’t have to be perfect! Do your best and enjoy your guests.”

  • DIVE IN. “You just have to go for it. I’ve been to many grazing tables and hosted events where people hold back, and you have to encourage the first person to go ahead and make that move.”  

  • BONUS TIP. “Freeze Proscuitto and goat cheese for about fifteen minutes. After that, it’s easier to cut.” 

If you prefer to leave this culinary art to a professional, hire early. Jess Nixon is in high demand. 

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