July 5, 2021

Patriotic Picnic


Although I've lived in the city for twenty plus years I've never been to any of the free outdoor summer concerts at Stern Grove, mainly because I was normally abroad.   But this year was different since I wasn't going overseas for the summer...thanks COVID.  The San Francisco Symphony was performing at the festival this year on the 4th of July and luckily I was able to secure some tickets.  
Stern Grove is one of those venues where bringing a picnic is expected and encouraged and I was totally on board with that.  Lately I've been really into picnics and I love planning out the different kinds of food and drinks that can be enjoyed outdoors.  Food always seems to taste so much better al fresco, doesn't it?   While yummy food and drink is a requirement I also like to make sure the picnic is visually appealing by using nice serving ware.  As the saying goes, we always eat first with our eyes. 

Since the concert was on the 4th of July I wanted to create a Patriotic Picnic to celebrate the red, white and blue holiday.  [Full disclosure: the food wasn't necessarily red, white and blue, but the decor was!]  When assembling a picnic I like to bring a mix of homemade and store bought items and have a variety of offerings.  Tuna fish sandwiches and some of the desserts (buttermilk panna cotta, Mackles'mores  cookies) were made by yours truly and the rest of the foods (cheese, charcuterie, dip, fruit, crackers) were store bought. 
No picnic is complete without a cocktail and the one that epitomizes summer to me is a Pimm's Cup.  A British classic, it's one of my favorite summertime drinks and always reminds me of England and Wimbledon.  If you've never had it before it's made with Pimm's, a gin-based liquor, which is mixed with lemon-lime soda, fruits and ice.  I usually tell people it's like a British sangria because it's so light and refreshing.
The symphony concert and patriotic picnic were a great success (several guests sitting nearby even commented how impressed they were with the spread!).  If only the temperatures hadn't been in the low 60s and overcast, but that's a typical San Francisco summer for you!

Picnic Basket: Anthropologie
Picnic Blanket: Old Navy
EnamelWare: Cost Plus  


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