Farmshop Inspires Our Stunning Holiday Boards at Home

Photo: Sara Cardenas

When we decided to craft the ultimate holiday cheese boards, we went straight to the best source we could think of. As the Culinary Director of Farmshop, Brian Reimer can tell you anything you want to know about every single thing on those shelves. He can tell you about the hundred-pound bags of butter beans, the fifteen hundred dollar wheels of Parmesan, the black-eyed peas from Butte County, and the bags of flour that have flown out the door since the pandemic began. Yeast has been selling like crazy as well—boatloads of fresh yeast for everyone’s Instagram-worthy baking projects. They’re drying their hoshigaki (dried persimmons). They import fennel pollen from Sicily. They are working with Richards Grassfed Beef, one of the few regenerative, certified grass-fed beef companies in the state. Denise Young, a textile maker, delivers an armload of Shibori aprons every Sunday. Wooden Palate, based in Mar Vista, makes cheese boards with cool little thumbholes. Farmshop gets their gherkins from Pacific Pickleworks in Santa Barbara. The list goes on and on and on.

When COVID-19 forced the first closures in LA, Farmshop at the Brentwood Country Mart has totally transformed their operation and managed to turn their restaurant into a successful marketplace that includes pantry staples, a bakery and deli, wines, beverages, fresh produce, and a selection of small selection of curated home goods. They're doing well with takeout and deliveries, including their quick-to-sell-out Sunday fried chicken dinner. Though they've had to make some adjustments to accommodate the latest orders, they've been able to bring back about 73% of their staff, and have even been able to pick up a few extra farm vendors since COVID-19 began. Their mission is always to push towards organic, biodynamic, and regenerative whenever they can.

Not surprisingly, Brian’s an expert on custom cheese boards, especially for the holidays. What’s the secret sauce? It turns out, when it comes to cheese, the sweet spot is a mix of creamy and hard. He also recommends going for seasonal fruits, nuts, and jams. 

“Bulk it up, make it big,” he says. 

As for wine pairings, he recommends a good old classic: Schramsberg’s Blanc de Blancs, a vivid, bright, and tingly white that was President Nixon’s own gift to China. Or you can try Villa Creek’s Avenger—a sturdy Syrah-based blend from Paso Robles.

We went off on our own and came up with a trio of holiday boards. Everything below is available at Farmshop so you too can find a good piece of wood and make your own.

Photo: Sara Cardenas

The Big Cheese


Cypress Grove Chevre, Humboldt Fog 
Cypress Grove, Lamb Chopper 
Calkins Creamery, Noblette  
Springbrook Farm, Tarentaise Spring Brook Farm 
Capriole, Goat Cheese 


Hoshigaki (Japanese dried persimmons from Farmshop) 
Temecula Valley Honey Company, Honey Comb 
Fat Uncle Farms, Garlic and Herb Almonds 
Raincoast Crisps, Cranberry and Hazelnut Crackers 
Rustic Bakery, Rosemary and Olive Oil Organic Sourdough Flatbread 
Eli's Bees, Fire Wildflower 100% raw honey 
Jam, Blackberry Walnut 
Pudwell Farms, Blackberries and Figs 

Photo: Sara Cardenas

The Maximalist and The Minimalist


Petite Breakfast (Marin Fresh Cheese)
Red Hawk (Cowgirl Creamery)
Oma (Jasper Hill Creamery)


Marcona Almonds (Miller Farms)
Toscano Salami (Fra’ Mani)
Proscuitto Americano (La Quercia)
Bresaola (Brooklyn Cured)
Rosemary & Olive Oil Sourdough Flatbread (Rustic Bakery)
Cornichons (Maille)
Grapes (G Farms)
Pomegranate (Schaner Farms)
Hoshigaki (Japanese dried persimmons from Farmshop) 


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