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Playing Tourist: A Napa Valley Picnic

It’s been a while since I’ve played tourist in my hometown of Napa. The weather has been a bit more consistent and warm, so I’ve been itching to get outside. As usually happens with my life, I’m either booked up on the weekends or need a really, really good reason to get outdoors.

Enter UncommonGoods, a Brooklyn-based company specializing in unique items for your home, gifts, or yourself. I was invited to check out their extensive kitchen + bar tools section and pick my top favorites to try out. As someone who works at a nonprofit, I was absolutely swooning when I learned they’re a founding B Corp, which means they use the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. How could I say no? 

I perused the kitchen + bar tools section (here) and quickly discovered the picnic backpack and knew having it would force me outside. Then, I spotted two things any wine drinker / Napa Valley native needs to have in their arsenal: the Corkcicle Air and a silicone wine glass set. The final item that sent me over the edge with excitement? A recycled picnic mat for 2 so that wouldn’t have to find picnic spot with benches. Perfect! These would be the tools I needed to get my butt into the great outdoors and enjoy beautiful wine country. Plus, it gave me an excuse to eat lots of cheese and drink wine with my friend. For research..

I was pleasantly surprised by how quickly my picnic items got to me. But then I realized, Uncommon Goods graciously sent me all the tools necessary to have a successful picnic in the Napa Valley, except for the food and wine! So off to Trader Joe’s I went, in search of charcuterie and cheese plate fixings, pre-chilled bubbles, and dessert, before heading out to find a shaded spot to enjoy the gorgeous weather we’ve been having in Napa Valley.

The picnic backpack managed to hold a bottle of bubbles, box of crackers, meat tray, apricots, a selection of cheeses, dessert, my now frozen Corkcicle Air, and 2 silicone wine glasses. All while keeping everything nice and chilly. Plus! It comes with place settings for two, built right in! Bonus: a wine key is included.

I’m allergic to grass, and I don’t care much for bugs to join in on my food and wine party, so the recycled picnic mat for 2 proved a great find. It rolled out to be quite bigger than I’d expected! I was even thinking it would make for a nice sleeping mat for camping or to be used at the beach. I was a little bummed that the red coloring from the mat transferred to my skin, but was relieved that it didn’t transfer onto my clothing. I think part of this had to do with the hot 90 F day, which caused us to sweat. Luckily, we had chilled bubbles to cool us off.

Even though the picnic backpack came with a set of stemmed wine glasses, I just love the silicone wine glasses I was sent and I opted to use them instead. No more crying over spilled wine and cracked wine glasses while you’re picnicking! Plus, they’re dishwasher safe. I can see myself using these at concerts, bbqs, and future beach outings. They have even more wine glasses to choose from here.

One thing I wasn’t worried about on my picnic? The bottle of bubbles getting warm, thanks to the Corkcicle Air. Made specifically for still wine bottles, it didn’t totally fit into my bottle of Gloria Ferrer. However, it still manged to keep our bubbles at the perfect drinking temperature. The Corkcicle Air is something wine drinker should have on hand for picnics, nay, in life. Bring one as a your hostess gift the next time friends invite you over. Click here to check out other amazing hostess gift ideas.

I can see myself picnicking all spring and summer long, now that I have the proper tools in my arsenal. All I’ll need to do is replenish my food and wine supplies. What are some of your picnic must haves?

Thank you to UncommonGoods for partnering with me on this post!  Though I thoroughly enjoyed all of the items sent to me, all opinions are my own.

About In Natalie's Shoes

I’m a twenty-something food fanatic. By day, I’m working for a non-profit, by night I’m dreaming of becoming a domestic goddess, creating adorable crafts to gift and engineering delicious home cooked meals for the fabulous dinner parties I’ll one day throw. I love to travel, locally, regionally… heck, even internationally, I don’t discriminate too much when it comes to a new destination. I am a little obsessed with taking photos of the food I eat, whether I make it or pay to eat it. It is my firm belief that a girl can never have enough purses or too many shoes. I plan to fill this lovely little blog with my adventures in food, travel, and craftiness. I hope you enjoy!

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