CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
This application claims the priority of provisional application Ser. No. 60/990,394 filed in the United States Patent and Trademark Office on Nov. 27, 2007.
At many holiday and social events people tend to offer various types of hors d'oeuvres such as fruit, cheese and crackers. These days people are becoming more sophisticated with the food choices they are making, however, they do not have the knowledge they need to provide the proper mix of cheeses and wines. Typically, people will choose random cheeses from the market or just order a cheese platter with no knowledge of which cheese have been chosen and why.
- SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
Accordingly, there is a need for a well preserved cheese platter that contains cheeses that blend well together and are ready to serve.
The invention is generally directed to a ready to serve cheese platter.
An object of the present invention is to provide a cheese platter that is ready to serve.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a pre-made cheese platter that is preserved by a plastic wrap so that it stays preserved.
A further object is to provide a variety of cheeses on a platter that is ready for serving and cutting.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a cheese platter having a variety of cheese options that blend well together.
A further object of the present invention is to provide the history of the cheese served on the platter in order to educate the purchaser.
Yet a further object of the present invention is to provide guidance on the wine pairings for the particular cheese platter.
A further object of the present invention is to provide portable cheese platter.
Still other objects and advantages of the invention will, in part, be obvious and will, in part, be apparent from the specification.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
The invention accordingly comprises the features of construction, combinations of elements and arrangements of parts which will be exemplified in the construction as hereinafter set forth, and the scope of the invention will be indicated in the Claims.
For a fuller understanding of the invention, reference is made to the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 shows a top view of the cheese platter;
FIG. 2 shows a side perspective view of the cheese platter;
FIG. 3 shows a top view of the cheese platter;
FIG. 4 shows back view of the box for the cheese platter; and
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
FIG. 5 shows the vacuum seal plastic wrapping process.
The invention is generally directed to a ready made cheese platter sealed for extended shelf life and visible by the consumer.
American consumers are becoming more sophisticated in the foods and wines they consume. Greater travel has exposed Americans to European culinary habits. Unlike, Europeans, Americans do not generally have similar experience putting together a sampling of cheeses either for personal use or for parties and special events. The cheese board of the present invention provides a variety of cheeses that blend well together that may be from the same region or country.
As shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 and the alternate embodiment of FIG. 3, the board will contain 3-5 cheeses selected with a various theme such as an Italian cheese board, a mountain cheese board etc. The cheeses are chosen by experts in the industry to create a certain theme and to create a balance between hard, soft and semi-soft cheeses. For example, the board in one preferred embodiment would contain a hard cheese, a semi hard cheese, a semi soft cheese, one blue and one soft cheese. FIG. 4 shows the exterior packaging 50 which contains the sealed cheese board and provides much of the advice and content information on it.
The cheese board will be constructed as follows, the individual cheeses 1, 2, 3, 4 and 31, 32, 33, 34 will be placed on a plastic cutting type board 10, 30. The board is decorative and functional so that the cheese is ready to be served once removed from the wrapping. The board 10 can be made of various types of material, such as wood or plastic. The board 10 can also be decoratively designed for certain holidays or events. In a preferred embodiment, the board is made from a polyethylene. The board 10 is also functional in that the cheese can be cut while on the board.
As shown in FIG. 2, the board 10 has a top surface 12 and a bottom surface 13 and at least three edges 14, 15, 16, 17. At least two cheeses are placed on the top surface of the serving board, each of the cheeses has a geometrical shape with at least a bottom surface 100, a top surface 10 and at least three side surfaces 120, 130, 140 and 150. The board 10 with cheeses will be put through a thermoforming machine containing a heat tunnel where a plastic film 20, 40, for example DARFRESH®, will be placed around all the items on the board and then vacuum sealed. This plastic vacuum seal process will preserve the freshness of the cheeses until serving. This packaging offers a unique three-dimensional view of the products it is used for. It will capture the attention of customers, as well as the appreciation of retailers due to the case ready convenience. This high quality package reduces the amount of natural juices that leak from the food over time making it a desirable package for a variety of different products, such as cheeses, hams and sausages. The DARFRESH® packaging process differs from the standard thermoforming machines mainly due to the heated dome and anti-webbing plate technologies as shown in FIG. 5.
As shown in FIG. 1, the plastic wrap consists of a top layer 60 and a bottom layer 70. Top layer 60 covers cheeses 1, 2, 3 and 4 and the top surface 12 of the serving board and extends just past the each of the edges 14, 15, 16 and 17 of the serving board. Bottom layer 70 covers the bottom surface 13 of the serving board extending past each of the edges 14, 15, 16 and 17 of the serving board to form a seal 75 with the top layer of plastic wrapping. The DARFRESH® packaging process uses the top 60 and bottom 70 layers to create a vacuum skin consumer pack that fits around the product like a second skin. The top layer 60 wraps itself firmly but gently around every contour of the product without distorting its shape. The bottom 70 and top 60 layers are then heat-sealed together right up to the product's edges to produce a securely and hygienically sealed pack. As shown in FIG. 5, air 65 is inserted between the top layer 60 and the cheeses so that the top layer rises closer to the heat and becomes hot and soft. When the air is removed the heated soft top layer 60 drapes over the cheeses 2, 4 and the serving board 10 and falls between the gap 80 creating a three dimensional wrapping around the top surface 10 and side surfaces 120, 130, 140 and 150 of the cheeses. The remaining air in the chamber and the pack is evacuated. The two webs then seal skintight around the product's contours, as can be seen in FIG. 5. The DARFRESH® system creates a total seal around the product. Therefore, wherever there is film to film contact a hermetic seal forms. Other systems which incorporate the same or similar features can be used. In addition, the draping of the heated plastic over the product using the product as a mold thereby eliminates wrinkles along the packaging. The surrounding seal is easy to open by the consumer so that the cheese board can be ready to serve right after the seal is removed. With this type of packaging, the product serves as the mold to ensure a uniform fit of the top film around the product improving package appearance, eliminating wrinkles, and providing a total seal. By conforming completely to the product shape, a three dimensional package is created which provides excellent display properties.
This preservation allows the cheese board to be made, distributed to retailers and then sold and stored by the purchaser until use. In addition, the plastic seal is clear which allows the consumer to view the cheese and platter prior to its purchase. All the consumer needs to do is peel off the plastic sealer and serve. The consumer does not need to arrange the cheese on the board, as it is already done prior to purchase. Each cheese on the board will be identified with a short description of its history. In addition, wine pairings that go well with the cheese will be suggested. In addition to cheeses, deli products and sausages or similar meat products can also be incorporated with the platter and the sealer so that there is a clean, well organized, secure and clearly visible presentation of the products with an extended product life.
It will thus be seen that the objects set forth above, among those made apparent in the preceding description, are efficiently obtained and, since certain changes may be made in the above constructions without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention, it is intended that all matter contained in the above description or shown in the accompanying drawings shall be interpreted as illustrative, and not in a limiting sense.
It is also to be understood that the following claims are intended to cover all of the generic and specific features of the invention herein described and all statements of the scope of the invention which, as a matter of language, might be said to fall there between.