Thursday, June 4, 2009

Picnic Time!

My favorite summer past-time is having my meals alfresco. Regardless if the star of the meal is a hunk of grilled meat or a simple salad made from locally grown lettuce. I just love any excuse to eat doors. I come from a place where as soon as the snow begins to melt away (around April or May) us Quebecers are out in tank tops and shorts; and the temperature hasn't even reached 50F yet. Just as quickly as we shed our winter layers, restaurants and cafes are setting up both elaborate terraces, or even one or two tables, on the sidewalks. We appreciate what little sun and warmth we can get in the summer months and want nothing more than to sit outside and drink our sangria (or Labatt) with some aged cheddar (or poutine).

Living in New York, I am longer afforded the luxury of sitting out on my deck and drinking and eating with mes amis (my friends). Because the police look down upon conspicuous containers of liquor in public, my outdoor eating has become somewhat more tame.

Alas, I have come across a product that is brilliant in more ways than one. Alice White, an Australian wine brand, has both affordable and good quality wines. Has recently introduced three of it's award winning varietals -Chardonnay, Lexia, and Shiraz- in 1/2L Tetra Pak cartons. The price? only $4.99. So, now instead of toting around a bottle and bottle opener and trying to slyly conceal your bottle of wine, you can throw in your Tetra Pak carton with it's easy twist off cap and drink to your hearts content. The cops will not be the wiser for it, unless they read my blog of course.
My favorite of the three was Lexia, which is sweeter than a Riesling and a bit fruity. Perfect for a nice refreshing drink on it's own. The containers hold about three glasses of wine, and you can easily store it open in the fridge for a week.

When it comes to glassware for your wine, forget those crappy beer cups and check out govino glasses. They are washable, reusable (up to a certain point, then you must replace them), cheap and stylish. Most importantly, there is a little thumb groove, so you will never accidentally drop your glass when your motor skills start lapsing.

Happy Eating!

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