The holidays are here! Even though we may not be hosting or attending the usual parties this season, there are still lots of ways to make things festive and fun. Whether you’re doing a Zoom reunion with college friends, an at-home happy hour, a holiday movie binge, or snuggling up around the firepit with neighbors; Locatelli cheeses make everything more special.

Take a tasting tour of Italy with an Italian themed snack board and wine tasting.

To liven up your usual at-home happy hour give it a taste of Italia. Ask your local wine shop to recommend a new Italian varietal or two that you may not have tried such as a Franciacorta made in the classic Champagne style, a lightly bubbly red Lambrusco and a full bodied red like Dolcetto or Amarone. Pick up some Italian charcuterie such as spicy soppresata, salami, pepperoni, and prosciutto and authentic cheeses from Italy like a wedge of Locatelli Pecorino Romano, wheel of Saracino with Red Pepper, and some Crema di Pecorino. Add fresh or dried fruit, crackers, garnishes and nibbles. Italian favorites include honey, olives, pesto, marinated artichoke hearts, and pickled vegetables. Have fun creating an Instagram-worthy snackboard to graze from as you sip your new wine picks. If you’ll be hosting friends outside you can make mini

Make your virtual chat a cocktail party!

Instead of your usual comfy clothes on the group video call coordinate ahead of time to have everyone pull some party clothes out of the back of the closet, light candles or holiday lights, and enjoy some upscale party bites and cocktails together. Quick crostini are the ideal easy-to-eat nibble here and Locatelli cheeses make them simple to assemble and extra delicious. Try our Crema di Pecorino spread on toasted baguette topped with fig jam or shave our Pepato Pecorino on top of toasts, broil, and garnish with some prosciutto, cooked vegetables, or a slice of pear for a fun flavor twist.

Snuggle up and make your holiday movie watching session more special.

Skip ordering in yet another pizza and make some Pressed Panini instead! They’re an easy but festive snack idea you can customize to everyone’s taste. Slather thick cut Italian bread with pesto, jarred olive spread, or Locatelli Crema di Pecorino. Layer with your choice of grilled vegetables, roasted peppers, cured meats, a melting cheese like fresh mozzarella or Locatelli Saracino, deli turkey breast, and arugula or other dark leafy green. Brush the outside of your sandwich with olive oil and cook to your liking on an indoor grill pan with a heavy pan on top to create your own panini press.

Think beyond your usual holiday cookies when it comes to sweet treats!

Enjoy an elegant pour of port, dessert wine, or a cozy cocktail with a cheese course as the Europeans do. We love a nice wedge of Locatelli Pecorino drizzled with honey, a semi-soft mild Saracino with juicy sliced pears, or our Crema di Pecorino served on grainy crackers with a dab of jam for a sweet and salty treat.

Enjoy an upscale at-home brunch.

Set a pretty table with fresh flowers, prep a tray with some Prosecco and fresh juices for a mimosa bar, and give your usual brunch dishes a holiday makeover. Locatelli cheeses make it easy! Add our peppery Pecorino Pepato to your scrambled eggs, shave our Ricotta Salata on a salad topped with fresh melon and prosciutto, and try our Crema di Pecorino on your toast drizzled with honey.

Cozy Holiday Gathering IdeasHost a virtual cooking event.

Pick a time, a new or favorite cookbook, or a theme and “visit” with friends and family virtually from your kitchens. You can all make the same dish together, make it a cooking competition with one group designated as virtual judges, or each make a different recipe to rate. For example, classic Italian pasta dishes are always a favorite! Each group can try their hand at Cacio e Pepe made with plenty of freshly grated Locatelli Pecorino Romano, a luscious Spaghetti all Amatriciana topped with shaved Locatelli Ricotta Salata or a silky Pasta Carbonara.

Share the holiday spirit with others.

Chances are there are neighbors or friends who may be feeling a little lonely this year. Why not put together a slew of mini boxed cheeseboards or comforting pasta dishes to drop off to let them know you care and brighten their holiday. Going out of your way to do something special for others is truly the perfect way to celebrate the spirit of the season!

From our family at Locatelli to yours…wishing you a Happy Holiday Season and a Healthy New Year!