New to the scene: Wheyfarer Cheese Shop

Wheyfarer Cheese Shop opened in 2022, a new business on California Avenue that launched around the same time as its neighbor Elixir Superfood & Juice. Despite their seemingly choreographed debuts, the two stores couldn’t be more different.

Wayfarer stays true to its name, an upscale cheese shop that brings cheeses and other hard-to-find products to the Reno community. The small shop supports farmers who specialize in foods from pasture to plate, giving it a unique mission.

Inside, the shop sells cheeses, of course, but also all the accessories needed to create a cheese or charcuterie platter. The walls are lined with interesting crackers, honey, pickles and jams. And with a knowledgeable staff behind the bar, you can mix and match ingredients to create a complementary table setting.

If you want to eliminate the guesswork, you can also commission your boards from Wheyfarer. After all, a large part of the business is custom cheese and charcuterie boards. Start with the mini option for individual sized “boards”. This is especially recommended for events where each guest should receive their own mini salami enclosed in a plastic container. Just like the larger versions, the mini ($18) includes deli meats, cheeses, and accessories like jam, nuts, olives, and crackers.

Larger platters may focus on cheese and be sized to feed 10 or 20, or they may offer both cheese and charcuterie for same-size crowds. Vegetarian dishes and tapas are also available.

And while having a shop ready to make these coveted boards at your request or on your own is a convenient addition, that’s not the only way Wheyfarer thrives. My favorite part of the business is the grab-and-go lunches, a rotating collection of sandwiches, salads, and appetizers available for a quick lunch in-store or on the go.

Image: Nora Tarte

Despite the “grab and go” connotation it may have, each item is made to order. Sandwiches are pressed fresh right in front of you, and salads are built piece by piece to meet customer requests.

While the offerings change every week or so, quality you can count on.

The Arti-key, when offered, is one of my favorites. The pressed sandwich starts with buttery Truckee Sourdough bread that is equal parts soft and crusty, with those coveted grill lines perfected. Inside, artichoke, turkey, bacon, spinach, and caramelized onions are under melted cheese curds and chevre cheese, for an explosion of complex flavors.

Other menu favorites include grilled cheeses with rotating options; this week it offered The Four Cheesy with four coveted cheeses mixed together in the ultimate grilled cheese for adults.

On the side, choose between a house salad (mixed organic greens, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, and red onion dressed with balsamic vinaigrette) or Zapp’s fries.

The small shop also sells a selection of beers, wines, bubbly, sodas and specialty drinks. When dining, it’s hard to imagine a more affordable and luxurious meal than pairing a glass of bubbly with a grilled cheese sandwich.

Not sure what you’re looking for? Helpful staff are quick to offer cheese samples from the case.