We live in a world where just about anything can go viral on the internet. Sometimes those things are bad (flash mobs) but other things are so, so good.

Behold, the hyper-stylized cheese plate.

You know the one. The one with multiple kinds of beautifully arranged cheeses and meats. They're works of art, something to be praised and revered. Something that's as beautiful to look at as it is delicious. Something so famous, there's even an Instagram account dedicated to it.

There are many reasons why cheese plates are the best thing ever; they're filled with multiple kinds of cheeses, they're great for parties, and they're just dang gorgeous. Though a regular grocery store plate can still be good, I'm obsessed with cheese plates filled with fancy, highbrow cheeses.

But making such bonafide, yea-I-made-that cheese plate isn't always easy, so I talked to Amanda Berrill, manager of The Cheese Store in San Diego, California about what makes a great cheese plate, including a few of her go-to favorites.

swiss cheese, cheddar, dairy, dairy product, cheese, milk
Melkbus by Brianna Plaza

For Amanda, her path to cheese was unlikely, but that doesn't mean she can't make a masterful cheese plate. To start, she says she likes to mix it up as much as possible to satisfy a wide range of cheese lovers.

But because there are so many types of cheeses, it can be hard to narrow down the options. Some exciting ways to diversify your selection are to pick cheeses that are different types of milk (cow vs goat vs sheep), vary funkiness (often equatable to smelliness), and mix up the color options. And unless someone asks specifically asks for them, no blues.

She also likes to play around with the texture on her cheese plates. She likes to chunk gouda, but prefers to thinly slice semi-soft cheeses and leaves the rind attached. She also really likes varying the color and texture of rinds for a dramatic display.

bread, pastry, cream, sweet, cheese, cake, milk, dairy product
Harbison by Brianna Plaza

To complete the platter, add a few types of cured meats, some fruit (fresh and/or dried), some nuts, and a few rosemary sprigs for good measure. When picking meats and fruit, follow the same rules of variation, but keep it simple. One or two meats will suffice, and fruits like grapes, dried apricots, and cherries are long-approved staples for pairing with cheese. Add a small handful of almonds or walnuts, arrange some rosemary, and you've got yourself a knock-out cheese plate.

For some inspiration from Amanda, check out her favorite work:

platter, cheese, vegetable
Photo by Amanda Berrill

This post was originally published by Brianna Plaza on Hook and Blade Mag.