Sometimes a girl's just gotta get outside in the sun and chill, pretend she's not in a crowded city for a few hours. Admittedly, this often comes on a hungover Sunday and very little planning goes into the process. But from time to time we plan a picnic day in advance, and on these more mature occasions, creating the perfect afternoon requires a bit of planning and thoughtfulness.
No more are the days of, "ugh, I knew I'd forget something..." The thinking and organization has been done. These recommendations come after experiencing many-a-bottle of luke-warm rosé, a roasted corn salad when no plates or forks were packed. These are sad situations; may you experience them no more.
- Blanket. TBH I've been using a linen curtain; I only needed 1 from the pack of 2. But in case you don't have an extra piece of drapery lying around (because... who does?), opt for one of those snazzy blankets that has one waterproof side. Easy to clean and you don't have to worry about setting up on damp ground.
- Music. Sure, we can stick an iPhone in a plastic cup to amplify that pre-made Spotify playlist, why not push a bit further? Something like this portable speaker would do the trick.
- Plates/Utensils. These reusable utensils and organic bamboo plates look pretty sweet, but are sturdy to boot. And don't forget the napkins (reusable cloth ones would be nice for the environment and all, but can't fault ya if paper happens).
- Some combination of carbs, cheeses, meats. And maybe, if we're feeling ambitious, a few other pairings. To mix things up, I like to think of the accoutrements that might go with a cheese or bruschetta plate and also pack tapenade, a pesto, mixed greens, cured tomatoes, and the like.
- A fruit tarte or savory galette. They can be served room temperature and work perfectly with summer produce (like this heirloom tomato one). Empanadas would also be great.
- A salad. Traditional greens, or mix it up and go grain-based, like this faro x tuna x cannellini bean x watercress one.
Opt for a bottle (or several) or a crisp rosé or white, or go a step further and home-make cocktails, like this thai basil x lemon x cucumber x gin one. A homemade, tart lemonade is a fab non-alcoholic options. And to ensure your beverages remain cool, freeze slightly in advance and grab these: