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The following content is intended for readers who are 21 or older.
It’s no secret that I really didn’t like the beach until we moved here. Daytona? No thank you, I’m not 18 anymore. Myrtle Beach? No thank you, I am not interested in braving beach tourists and doing lame touristy things on vacation. Plus, the Atlantic water is just gross and murky and scary because of sharks and rip currents. No, no, no, no.
But here? Here things are different. Here, the water is crystal clear and blue all the way to the bottom, so you can see any sea critters coming your way from quite a ways away – they don’t call it the Emerald Coast for nothing. The sand is soft, sugar-sand, and the tourists are bearable. Even better, there aren’t overpriced, tacky shops every few feet flanked by moldy miniature golf or creaky thrill rides. The thrills here are pretty well limited to meeting up with friends on the beach for a picnic with boxed wine and a bonfire, stand-up paddle boarding, and kayaking. That’s about as thrilling as it gets here, and you know what? Not only am I OK with it, I love it.
Have you seen that one movie with that one funny-faced actor where the man is basically living in a reality TV show, and has been since birth, but he doesn’t know it? Know which one I’m talking about? We literally live there. Literally. It’s pretty much one of the coolest things ever. We’re close enough to the beach to decide on a moment’s notice to pack some of our favorite portable foods up, and head to the beach to watch the sun dip behind the emerald waves.
In the (exactly) one year we’ve lived here, I’ve mastered the “get-up-and-go” beach picnic. I don’t eat carbs and Kyle can’t eat gluten, so fried chicken and sandwiches really aren’t on our menu. We’ve come up with some other go-to picnic foods that pair really well with our Black Box wine Sweepstakes (kicking off July 7th), which is 100% completely legal on our beaches. So cool, right?
So here’s the thing: We can have alcohol on our beaches, but we cannot have any glass on the beach. For someone who can’t drink beer (Kyle), this is pretty limiting, which is why we were so excited to find Black Box wine. The Pinot Noir is really good, and pairs well with our kielbasa and sharp cheddar. It’s also light enough to drink while indulging in my Creamy Peach-Berry Salad. The fact that my wine snob, 4-star resort restaurant manager husband enjoys this wine speaks volumes for its quality, you know, just in case the over 50 Gold Medals Black Box has won for its quality wasn’t enough. My favorite part is that it is equivalent to four bottles of wine. I also super duper love that it’s 40% less than comparable quality wines, and it stays fresh for up to six weeks after opening, which means fewer trips to the store for me, and more money in my pocket for important things like pedicures. If that’s not a win, I don’t know what is.
We pack everything in individual containers to tote to the beach. This makes it easier to hand out to our friends. Nobody wants to mess with dipping servings into flimsy paper bowls at the beach, so these reusable containers are perfect size for kielbasa and cheese, and individual servings of the fruit salad, whose delicious recipe is below. The box fits perfectly in my Utility Tote, and contains no glass. Can you say Red Solo Cup? Or do you prefer a cutesy plastic wine glass like me?
However you take your wine on the beach, make sure your cup is full of Black Box wine. This is one time you’ll thank me for telling you to box yourself in, you can thank me later.
For more fantastic entertaining ideas, visit the Social Entertaining Hub!
And on July 7, enter to win this great sweepstakes!