When it comes to meal starters, is there anything better than a really good meat and cheese plate? For far too long, this wonderful mix of cured meats and fine cheeses has been a story of squandered potential, and since the holidays are coming, you’ll see what I mean: limp, greasy slices of dollar store summer sausage mixed with cubes of day-glo orange cheese with a few wilting Ritz crackers to complete the package. It doesn’t have to be this way, people — you can have an elegant and delicious selection of meats and cheeses ready to start any meal; just ask the Capital Bar and Grill.
At CBG, you can mix and match several types of charcuterie and cheese. Dry cured meats like bresaola and coppa sit next to house-made deliciousness like pate made with pistachios (or cranberries on our most recent visit) and a chicken liver mousse that is creamy, rich, and completely excellent. As for cheese, the Capital provides a selection that ranges from creamy Camembert to a sharp, crumbly blue (my favorite) that can please any palate. Add in a handful of spiced pecans and a large basket of grilled bread, and the results are as far from those sad cocktail party meat trays as the moon is from the sun. It’s the sort of thing that can be the beginning of a great dining experience or the main course of something equally good, and the variety of combinations available make for a fun time deciding what to get (although in that picture above, we got everything).
Getting everything offered can, of course, be a little pricy, but the whole plate will easily feed a table of four with some left over. Smaller appetites would do good to pick that liver mousse and pate, as these fresh-made items are representative of the artistry and skill that defines good charcuterie. And if the selection of fine cheeses isn’t your thing, you can always supplement your meats with some of CBG’s famous pimento cheese.