How to Plan a Fall Al Fresco Wine and Cheese Birthday Party

Who says summer is the only season for outdoor entertaining? Autumn weather lends itself perfectly to cozy gatherings like an intimate al fresco wine and cheese birthday party! So grab some table setting and food presentation ideas from our own French country-themed set to take you from planning to hosting. Then, get those wraps and sweaters ready to enjoy a simple yet stylish get-together in the fall outdoors (*this post contains affiliate links)!

Set Up a Scrumptious Spread

The wonderful thing about a wine and cheese party is that it’s actually “no cook”! Yet it’s sure to impress with an artful display of cheeses, breads, fruits, and nuts.

bread display for an al fresco wine and cheese in the fall

For cheese and wine pairings, check out your favorite deli or grocery for these delicious duos:

  1. Gouda to go with Cabernet
  2. Aged cheddar with Malbec
  3. Manchego with a sparkling wine
  4. Ricotta with Riesling
  5. Parmesan  with Prosecco
  6. Gruyere with Chardonnay
  7. Brie with Merlot
  8. Bleu cheese with Pinot Noir or a sweet Port
  9. Feta with red wine or a dry Rose
  10. Iberico cheese with a full-bodied Rioja

Crusty Breads and Crunchy Nuts

nuts, breads, and cheeses wine and cheese birthday in the fall

Treat your guests to special breads like baguettes, brioche, pumpernickel, rye, honey oat, and of course pumpkin in keeping with the season. Display them in breadbaskets or wooden boards. Be sure to offer up walnuts, pistachios, and almonds, too, for extra crunch and texture.

A Charming Garden Vignette

use garden-inspired decor for an autumn wine and cheese party

Create a quaint vignette as the focal point of your outdoor venue. Dig up a treasure or two from your garden, garage or attic—an antique bicycle, iron hurricane lanterns, rustic baskets, wooden crates, a tree stump cut into wood slices, maybe an old birdcage.

Delicious Fruits: Fresh to Dried

serve fresh fruits like grapes, berries, pears, and apples

Aside from the ever-popular grapes, add the fresh flavors and colors of other fruits like blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, pomegranates, cherries, apple, pear, and orange slices—plus dried apricots, dates, and figs. Oh, and tuck in an extra treat of dark chocolate squares!

Crackers and Fruit Preserves

fruit jams and preserves

For easy bites, set out mild-flavored crackers like crostinis, flatbread, rice and wheat crackers. Perfect for topping with fruit preserves that bring summer flavors into fall—strawberry, blackberry, and peach jam, and orange marmalade. Include a jar of honey for that added sweetness!

Garden-Themed Table Decor

garden table decor for an al fresco party

In keeping with the al fresco setting, use garden elements as table decor. Create centerpieces out of leafy cuttings and fresh (or faux) fruits. Craft plate chargers from vine wreaths and tiny fall flowers. Then, prepare miniature pots of lavender or fresh herbs to serve as accent pieces and take-home party favors in one!

Get Crafty with Bread

breads for guests at place settings

Take advantage of the varied shapes of breads and rolls to dress up your table settings and food buffet. Get creative in using them as menu card holders, food label stands (to identify the different cheeses and wines), and again as a party favor idea!

Wine and Cheese Party Essentials

Invest in just a few key entertaining essentials, like these from Amazon. And you can proudly host a pro-looking wine and cheese party in the cozy ambiance of home! (*this section contains affiliate links)

Large Bamboo Cheese Board Set via Amazon

1 – Large Bamboo Cheese Board Set – Wooden Serving Tray and Charcuterie Platter with Two Ceramic Bowls, Hidden Magnetic Drawer, Cheese Knives, Serving Forks, Markers and Wine Accessories

Andaz Press Wine and Cheese Table Sign  via Amazon

2 – Andaz Press Wine and Cheese Table Sign (1 Pack)

Cheese Markers Set via Amazon

3 – Cheese Markers Set – 5 Chalkboard Labels Made of Natural Slate & 2 Soapstone Chalk Markers

Artisan Meat & Cheese Platter via Amazon

4 – Artisan Meat & Cheese Platter – a carefully selected assortment of gourmet meats, artisan cheeses, crackers, and antipasto items

Glasses Libbey via Amazon

5 – Libbey Stemless 12-Piece Wine Glass Party Set for Red and White Wines

wine and cheese party supplies

6 – Wine Theme Party Plates and Cups

wine glass markers via Amazon

7 – Wine Glass Marker Pens (Pack of 5 Metallic Colors)


8 – Vintage Wine Cork Cheese Spreaders (Set of 4)

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