There's something so divine about having a picnic in a park. The planning is a joy in itself — getting the right location, pairing the appropriate wine and cheese and prepping a humidity-friendly outfit, all the while channeling some serious picnic vibes a la Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music or Grace Kelly in To Catch a Thief.
Once again, the Singapore Repertory Theatre allows you to enjoy the great outdoors in the comfort of Fort Canning Park, their trusted compound for the annual theatre extravaganza, Shakespeare in the Park. Their ninth production this year will attempt a contemporary take on loves and lives lost with Romeo & Juliet. Their biggest Shakespeare production so far, it stars Thomas Pang (Tribes) and Cheryl Tan (Beauty World) as the two leads, with well-known thespians Shane Mardjuki, Brendon Fernandez and Daniel Jenkins in supporting roles.
Our advice for the best picnic ever? Head down early and secure a spot of course, but make sure you have your essentials ready... wet wipes are your best friends. Book your meals a day or hours in advance — we've listed the best ones that deliver to Fort Canning Park — coupled with a tipple or two for a celebratory toast to the arts.
Pick and mix
Trust Afterglow to come up with guilt-free versions of some of our favourite Asian street snacks. Fresh, non-processed and taking advantage of local ingredients, we love their Kimchi Nori Rolls, homemade with aged kimchi rolled with almonds that have been made to look and feel like sushi rice. For a Vietnamese alternative, opt for their Saigon Rolls, which bring together brown rice vermicelli, slow-cooked tom yum broth, carrot, beetroot, avocado, romaine lettuce and cashew mayonnaise in a moreish bite. Dip this in their spicy lime sauce. Order via Food Panda.
To save yourself a hot mess, opt for all-in-one bowls. The guys from DoSiRak and Grain Traders do them best — the earlier packs a healthy under-500 calorie Korean-inspired punch, while the latter loads up on all your necessities with their one grain-one protein-one hot veggie-one cold veggie-one topping-one sauce formula. If you're craving Korean, try DoSiRak's beef bulgogi and kimchi bowls. For a meat-free alternative, Grain Traders' The Tantrum does a great one with lentil cakes, grilled beets, mixed bead Pico de Gallo and beetroot feta yoghurt sauce on bulgur wheat. Order here and via Deliveroo.
Water's great and all, but an energy-boosting juice is key to keep yourself hydrated on humid evenings. All of Juice Junkies' juices are cold-pressed on the same day as delivery, so rest assured your detox or antioxidant shot will come fresh. In fact, we love Juice Junkie so much, we co-created a special Buro juice with them — but for your picnic, you'd want to pack a range of their flavour categories for a variety: Greens, citrus, roots and nut milks. Order via Deliveroo.
Six packs are for the weak. To amp up your booze situation, check out our go-to cocktail connoisseurs Sunday Punch, co-founded by former Esquire editor Mark Tay. These small batch bottled cocktails are picnic ready — all you have to do is add ice and you're good to go. Each 500ml bottle can serve about eight to 10. If you like a good old GnT, try #88, which uses London Dry Gin together with pineapples, lemon grass, kaffir lime leaves and a touch of extra dry French vermouth. Order here.
If you want something more bubbly, we recommend the Wolf Blass Red Label Chardonnay Pinot Noir, a sparkling wine that offers a bouquet of citrus and strawberry notes on the nose. On the palate, the Chardonnay tames the wine with a soft creaminess while the introduction of Pinot Noir provides a crisp balance and sharp finish. You can pair this with a rich, creamy goat cheese, slices of prosciutto, and a grilled peach salad.
And to pack it all in...
This gorgeous Peterboro Handmade Picnic Basket is the handyman of your dreams. Handcrafted from Appalachian white ash hardwood, this woven beauty can hold up to approximately 27kg — which is more than enough for your food and beverages. Bonus: When you swing down the handles, the hinged lid serves as both a cutting board and a table that's large enough for two. Available at Crate&Barrel.
Singapore Repertory Theatre's Shakespeare in the Park - Romeo and Juliet runs from 30 April to 22 May at Fort Canning Park. For tickets, book here.