Need a restaurant with a cheese assortment
Let me suggest Artisanal, on 32nd Street between Park Avenue South and Madison. If you do a search on "Artisanal" on this board, you should find at least one thread that discusses this place.
A friend had dinner with my wife and me at Artisanal on Tuesday evening, and we thought the place was great. It's possible to spend a LOT of money there, but you can also keep the cost down. A plate of six cheeses is around $21, and it comes with a large assortment of bread. Add a wine and/or sparkling water, and the price goes up, but all the wines are available by the glass, so you can keep the cost down by limiting your wine intake. They do charge extra for fruit ($6 a serving, I think), but even so you can have a great time at reasonable cost.
A very nice selection of cheeses is also available at Gramercy Tavern in the tavern area, which does not take reservations. If you and your friend can snag a table or a seat at the bar, you can order a selection of cheeses accompanied by a glass of wine, again keeping the price down.