It does not take a genius to decide to give someone a cheese basket this holiday, but it is narrowing down the types of cheeses to include in the basket that's more challenging. Just like any gift that you want to give to a friend or to a business associate, there are some things to consider before buying a cheese gift basket.
The most crucial part of choosing the right cheese basket is knowing what type of cheese to include. If the recipient is a cheesemonger and has a favorite, order that particular type of cheese in different variations. But if you are not sure of the recipient's preference, the safest thing to do is to order a sampler of wide variety of cheeses. This way, the person who gets the basket will have to chance to taste different kinds of cheeses, some he may have never had.
Know that there are different kinds of cheese baskets. There are some baskets that are filled with cheese alone, while some include a bottle of wine to pair the cheeses or some meat. You also have to decide what kind of basket you would want to give. So for example the person does not eat meat, then make sure that the cheese basket that you order does not have any in it - do not just look for individual meat packages, there are some cheeses that have bits of meat mixed into it so make sure you go through each cheese too. If you are not sure whether the recipient eats meat or not, you will be better off buying a cheese basket filled with just cheeses or has other non-meat items.
Another thing to watch out for is the recipient's health. You have to know whether the person has certain allergies or is lactose intolerant. For all you know, the recipient could be allergic to nuts or sesame seeds (on crackers), both items could be included in the basket. But just to be sure, go for a cheese basket that does not have a these type of items.
If the recipient likes wine, then finding the right one is going to be more convenient. Most baskets come with a bottle of wine that is compatible to the kind of cheeses included, either white wine or red. There are even some that have a bottle of each!
Always remember that the cheese basket should complement the taste of the recipient. But don't forget to be creative, and add a little thought into the gift. Give a cheese basket filled with various treats the the person can really enjoy.