GEAR TO GET

8 Essential Picnic Products You Never Knew You Needed

When you’re on the road, stopping for a quick bite doesn’t have to mean giving in to fast food. Armed with these ingenious accessories, you can give just about any snack a tasteful upgrade.

By Colleen Clark, Saturday, Nov 5, 2011, 12:00 PM

Source Article: 8 Essential Picnic Products You Never Knew You Needed

Road trip food gear

When you're on the road, stopping for a quick bite doesn't have to mean giving in to fast food. Armed with these ingenious accessories, you can give just about any snack a tasteful upgrade.

(Levi Brown)

Picnic napkins

Cotton napkins: Checkered fabric (complete with a print of marching ants) evokes the platonic ideal of a picnic, even if you're only chowing down in a fast food parking lot. house8810.com, $3.

Warming mugs

Warming mug: Lukewarm java just doesn't cut it for long hauls. Enter Wagan Tech's stainless steel tumbler: It pulls power from a car's lighter socket to keep coffee hot all day. adorama.com, $14 for two.

Picnic blanket

Rolled blanket: This 5' x 6' fleece spread from Picnic Gift is the picture of practicality, with its waterproof backing (to prevent soggy seats) and built-in strap for hands-free transport. picnicworld.net, $29.

Picnic utensils

Clip-on cutlery: Nothing's more frustrating than snapping a dull plastic knife in two mid-meal. Coleman's detachable utensil set deserves permanent glove-box storage. coleman.com, $9.

Portable espresso maker

On-the-go espresso: Consider it your BYO barista: The pump-powered Handpresso turns disposable pods of ground coffee into the perfect ristretto in seconds. bestbuy.com, $100.

Portable food storage

Storage stack: A melamine carrier (similar to the Tiffin lunch boxes used by Indian office workers) lets you pack shareable, multicourse meals or separate dishes for picky eaters. vivodirect.com, $30.

Seasoning set

Seasonings set: Transform bland burger-chain fare with the Mobile Foodie Survival Kit, a slim, 5.5" x 6.5" toolbox of wasabi, soy sauce, and 16 organic herbs and spices. uncommongoods.com, $30.

Wine table

Traveling table: Wine glass + lumpy ground = increased odds of spilling the Syrah. Tovalo's bamboo table raises the barware, thanks to its 10" stake and dual drink slots. uncommongoods.com, $22.