Spring means sunshine, flowers, and picnics! But no picnic is complete without wine and a perfectly packed basket.
We don’t know about you, but we can’t WAIT to start socializing outdoors. Many of us are stuck indoors during the cold winter months, so basking in the sunshine with friends sounds absolutely divine! Plus, with National Picnic Day just around the corner (April 23rd), we figured there was no better time to plan a fabulous picnic.
The only thing that could make a picnic sound even more delightful? Wine! Oh, and a perfectly packed basket so the event goes off without a hitch 😉
Read on for tips on food and wine, basket selections, packing how-tos, and more!
First, Select Your Food and Wine!
If your version of a picturesque picnic revolves around your food and wine selection, you’re not alone! There’s something about lounging in nature with your favorite foods that feels extremely decadent. Plus, starting with your food and wine selection is wise from a practical nature as well.
First, determine how large your party will be. If it’s just you and your partner, you might be able to get away with more luxurious selections like smoked salmon. Items like seafood will require a cooler and/or ice packs, however, so serving a large group of people something like that can get tricky. Essentially, the larger your party, the simpler your food should be.
Simple food choices may include things like…
- Charcuterie-inspired items like summer sausage, a selection of cheeses, crackers, nuts, etc.
- Easy to eat fruits and vegetables like grapes, strawberries, olives, carrots, etc.
- Sandwiches that are easy to assemble or pre-assembled.
If you want to step up your picnic game, however, you may want to try something more adventurous like…
- Potato salad, pasta salad, fruit salad, etc.
- Fried chicken
- Deviled eggs
- Homemade pinwheels
Honestly, you’re allowed to get as creative as you like! Just don’t forget the wine. If you’re opting for a charcuterie-inspired picnic, we recommend a medium-bodied dry red like our PALO61 Toscano Rosso. The majority of our other items, however, will pair easily with a crisp white or a floral rosé like our PALO61, Toscana Rosato. Plus, there’s just something about sipping rosé in the sunshine that screams springtime!
Select Your Picnic Basket
While you’re certainly allowed to use whatever “basket” you have lying around, the food items you select may dictate the type of container you use. That’s because some menus really need a cooler as opposed to a basket.
If the majority of your items need to be kept cool, it’s best to opt for a cooler with ice and/or ice packs (although frozen water bottles will do the trick in a pinch). If only one or two items need to stay cool, you can probably get away with a typical wicker basket and a few ice packs.
Also, you’re not required to use the classic wicker basket at all! Yes, they do have a certain aesthetic appeal, but the point of a picnic is the experience. If you don’t have a perfect-looking basket, don’t sweat it. Need to bring a basket and a cooler? No problem. Too nervous to pack real dishes and want to opt for paper instead? Go for it! This is about having a good time with friends and family.
|Pro Tip: Bringing a wine that’s best served chilled? Chill it in the refrigerator before heading out and then pack it in a cooler or pack it with ice packs. It may not be that “perfect” temperature, but it will keep it from getting too warm.
Arrange Your Picnic Items Carefully
There are several schools of thought when it comes to actually packing a picnic basket.
Perhaps the most practical method is to pack the heaviest items on the bottom. For those bringing breakable items, this makes a lot of sense. The drawback is that you may have to take out EVERYTHING immediately upon arriving just to get to what you need. If that’s the case, we recommend putting anything that won’t be eaten quickly back into the basket.
That being said, others believe you should pack things in the order you’ll be eating them. This is a good idea if you’ve used ice packs because you’ll need to open the basket fewer times. Unfortunately, that sometimes means packing heavier items on top of lighter items. That means things might get a bit squished.
In the end, use your best judgment and remember that this is about having fun.
No matter what happens, you’re going to have a great time sipping wine and eating in the sun with friends! But here are just a few more items you’ll want to remember to make it more comfortable and practical…
- Try to use reusable containers for food to reduce trash.
- Bring a trash bag so you can leave everything just the way you found it.
- Bring extras of EVERYTHING (food, utensils, napkins, etc.). You never know when someone will crash your picnic or when someone will want an extra serving.
- Don’t forget a blanket to lounge on!
- A corkscrew for wine…duh.
- Water bottles for anyone who needs a sip of something other than wine.
- Wet wipes for easy clean-up.
- Don’t forget to take pictures!
Enjoy A Picnic With Wine This Spring!
Ok, after putting all this together we simply HAVE to have a picnic! The fresh spring air is calling our name and the thought of wine is making our mouths water. If you’re like us, grab your nearest and dearest, throw together some picnic items, and get outside. And don’t forget to take a picture of your picnic and tag us in it! Seriously, we can’t wait to see how you packed your picnic basket 😁