I can remember as a child going on picnics when we would be on vacation. At the time, I really had no appreciation for what a picnic really could be... then, it was just a cold sandwich at a park table but some how it still was a fond family memory. My husband and I enjoyed picnics when we were dating so shortly after I got married (many years ago), I was in Crate and Barrel and they were having an end of season sale on wooden picnic baskets. I bought one with all the "things" that go inside...I was ready should the occasion arise but it would be years before I knew how to properly use it. Not until moving to London in 2007 did I truly discover THE ART OF THE PICNIC.
You see, it is really much, much more than a cold sandwich and some potato salad. It is about creating a true dining experience, it is about making beautiful memories, it is about slowing down, and it is about bringing a little "luxury" into a very simple activity.
... and really, it takes very little effort. Stop and think for a minute how just a pretty cotton blanket in a shady spot, instead of a picnic table, would change the atmosphere and makeyou want to linger. You should think of planning a picnic in the same way you would if you were having guests for dinner. What makes the setting memorable?
Here are my 10 favorite things for bringing a little luxury to the picnic:
- A proper blanket (or blankets) to sit on that accommodates everyone
- A great wicker basket
- Real dishes and silverware
- Cloth napkins
- Fresh flowers for a centerpiece
- Real food...Grilled flank steak, shrimp cocktail, tomato salad, fruit salad, a beautiful cheese or charcuterie board... the possibilities are truly endless!
- A bottle of wine or champagne (don't forget the corkscrew!)
- Real glassware (I have even been known to take my crystal!)
- Portable music
- cutting boards and/or serving trays
Fall is the perfect time for a picnic with family or friends... I hope you will make some wonderful memories on your next outing.