Oh spring. You are more gorgeous than ever this year. Our brown hills are green for the first time in a very long time and poppies are popping up everywhere. A few weeks ago we celebrated my birthday by spending Sunday in one of my favorite places: wine country. Santa Ynez is just over the hill, about 30 minutes away, but feels worlds away. It’s so incredibly peaceful that I feel like I must be in Tuscany or Provence.

Before we left, I hopped out of bed early and made a picnic. The main event was a vegetarian “BLT” inspired sandwich. I love making one huge sammy on a loaf of baguette or ciabatta and then slicing it into individual portions. My veggie “BLT” was layered high with cucumber, avocado, tomato, greens, and feta cheese. I just used veganaise and mustard, but I think next time I would slather the bread with pesto or hummus and a drizzle of balsamic vinaigrette over the greens instead.

We met up with family at Gainey Vineyard, which is one of the best spots for picnics with kids. There is a big fenced-in lawn with picnic tables just begging for family gatherings. My mom and I enjoyed a delicious flight of wines with our lunch.

Is there anything more lovely than fruit? I piled a pie dish high with mango, mandarin oranges, blood oranges, blueberries, and kiwi.

The kids got to do just what kids should – run around in the sunshine. Cows in the background are a bonus.

I love a good colorful veggie sammy.

And chocolate chippers with big melty hunks for dessert.

Cheers to a fresh new season!

Ideas for your own spring picnic:

  • Veggie Sandwiches and BLTs
  • Fruit Platter
  • Cheese and Crackers
  • Chocolate Chip Cookies

other ideas:

Spinach Quiche

Hummus and Veggies

Spring Veggie & Goat Cheese Lasagna
Grilled Vegetable and Goat Cheese Sandwiches
Tex Mex Rice and Black Bean Salad