National Picnic Day is Saturday, June 18, and I just wrapped a fun segment on WGN-TV’s “Daytime Chicago,” talking about perfect wine pairings for summer picnics, and I’m here to share! Let’s dive in so you can be ready to picnic anytime!
Most importantly, make it easy. Pick up some snick-snacky foods at the supermarket. Oh, sure, in the past, I used to think I had to go all upscale and fancy, making homemade potato salad and shrimp cocktail, blah, blah … but you know what? That kind of thinking only made the thought of picnicking more intimidating! So, don’t sweat the small stuff, and picnic as often as you want!
Here are four picnic ideas that will put some summer in your step. And remember – a picnic can be almost anywhere! Picnic on your own deck or in your backyard, or in the park down the street, or head to the lakefront on your bike. The world is your picnic place! Here are ideas for four picnic pairings that I shared with WGN-TV’s “Daytime Chicago:”
Brunch Picnic with Zardetto Brut Prosecco ($17) This zingy, zesty glass of sparkling sunshine goes perfectly with the sweet-salty-juicy combo of Prosciutto and canteloupe. You’re going to get a nice burst of citrus and orange blossom from this sparkler – it’s an easy-to-love wine. Can’t find canteloupe? Use honeydew or try watermelon. Add a few grapes and you’ve got an excellent late-morning picnic!
After-Work Picnic with Ponga Sauvignon Blanc ($15) This New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc makes for a delightful after-work picnic! It’s from Marlborough (the Northern end of the South Island) and it has everything you want in a NZ Sauv B — ripe grapefruit and tropical fruit balanced a little peach. Pick up a prepared cheese-and-dried-fruit board at your local store, add some crackers and shazam! You’ve got an easy, delicious weeknight picnic.
Movies in the Park Picnic with Yalumba Y Series Rosé of Sangiovese ($15) This tasty pink pour is from South Australia and is light, bright and dry, offering generous berry and watermelon flavors, backed up with a little floral bouquet. I love it with an easy picnic of tangy goat cheese and crackers. Add some strawberries, some mixed nuts and you have a nice, easy night out at the movies – al fresco!
Date Night Picnic with Zenato Valpolicella Superiore ($17) This beauty is one of the best red wine values you’ll find. The wine is made mostly from Corvina (one of the “big three” grapes in most Valpolicella wines) and gushes with ripe black cherries, cranberries, roasted strawberries. It’s easy drinking and a perfect picnic pal with chocolate! Pick up some chocolate cupcakes, cookies or brownies and a pack of strawberries and settle in under the stars.
More Perfect Picnic Tips
- Bring a bottle of water (got for rinsing hands and for sipping).
- Don’t forget napkins, utensils, plates!
- Govino plastic wine glasses are the best! Now they make ones that are dishwasher-safe, too!
- I love these acrylic wine ice bags – fill one with ice and a bit of water to chill down a botlte fast and they are super portable.
Happy Picnic Day, my friends – on Saturday and any day!