When I’m heading into a long weekend I always like to have fun plans, be it a rooftop soiree, brunch or just enjoyable things to look forward to help speed the short week along. Typically (as with most weekends) these plans will inevitably involve friends, food and drinks. Aside from an outdoor BBQ one of my favorite summer activities is a good picnic in the park, I have this penchant for being outdoors as much as I can while the weather is nice because I know that come November I’ll be freezing and buried in my Canadian Goose Down sleeping bag for the next six months. Luckily here in NYC, we’re quite fortunate to have a few spectacular parks in our backyard so why not enjoy them with friends, wine and lots of laughs, right? Alyssa from A-Listed and I hit Central Park one night for a proper picnic and catch up, though not pictured was our amazing friend and photographer Jamie Rae who captured our evening flawlessly. No picnic will be complete without a few necessities, I’ve given the breakdown of my required picnic provisions and recommended attire.
A great picnic basket is a must. If I can justify it in my shoebox of an apartment in Manhattan anyone can justify having one! This one was a wonderful bridesmaids gift (Brides take note!) from a dear friend, which I use all the time! What I love about it is that it’s fully stocked with plates, glasses, cutlery, salt + pepper shakers and a wine opener, so whatever the occasion or location, you’re set!
A fantastic picnic blanket is a requirement (this one is a steal at $14!) it’s going to set the stage for your afternoon. Sure a plain white sheet would do but what’s the fun in that when there are so many beautiful printed options out there?
I have this thing for adorable napkins both of the disposable and non-disposable kinds! A cloth napkin is going to elevate your little soiree so I recommend using these for more intimate gatherings with a small group and Anthopologie is absolutely the place to pop into to grab these tiny linens, trust me! With disposable options these are great for any get together and you don’t have to wash them afterwards.
Whoever created these disposable cheese boards was brilliant! Truth be told, I usually carry a great wooden cheese board in my picnic basked that I left in the apartment when I was heading to the picnic. I popped into Williams Sonoma and stumbled upon these chic black cheese boards. They’re paper but a heavier weight and are perfect for a picnic! Bye bye traditional cheese board in my basket!
What to nosh on:
Wine – Think about what you’re going to be snacking on and select a wine that will pair well with a variety of bites. This Dark Horse chardonnay is a group favorite among our friends because while it’s a Chardonnay, which I usually deteste, it doesn’t taste like one at all. This goes great with a variety of cheese and fruits. I love a great red and the Dark Horse Red Blend is delightful, I chill it during the summertime to make it a bit more refreshing and it pairs well with so many dishes. Best part? You aren’t dropping $50 on wine for a picnic in the park!
Cheese – I snagged a few different types from Murray’s Cheese Shop on Bleecker Street in the West Village, which is my mecca for all things cheese. Their cheesemongers are outstanding. Don’t live in NYC? I really like ordering the curated cheese boards from Williams Sonoma and have yet to be disappointed with them!
Cured meats – While these are not the healthiest of options to have on hand, I’m a firm believer that wine and cheese are not to be consumed unless there are at least three different types of cured meat on hand. Go with the basics such as prosciutto, bresaola and a fiery sopressato for starters and upgrade yourself from there.
Fresh fruits – Summer is without a doubt my favorite fruit season with all of the fresh berries and melons, it’s just too good to pass up and no picnic will be ready to go until you have an assortment of all of the seasonal fruit offerings.
What to wear:
Picnic outfits (because for some what you wear is more important that your wine/cheese pairing)
Karen Walker sunnies from Ditto’s Endless Eyewear program! Score your 1st month of unlimited designer sunnies using code: IMPOSSIBLY
A little outtake to brighten your day and well simply because if you can’t laugh at yourself then what’s the point in living?
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