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Filfil Foods

The artisanal food lover’s guide to summer picnic provisions

By David Farley

Sure, spring brings out the sunshine and makes flowers bloom, but it also ushers in the season of outdoor dining. If you’re thinking it’s about time to start planning your next picnic or barbecue—and who isn’t?—here are 9 essential gourmet and artisanal items to make sure it outshines even Mother Nature.

North Africa meets Brooklyn with this filfil sauce
Based on the North African filfil chuma sauce, this Brooklyn company’s addictive sauces and dips are varying blends of chiles and garlic, two of the greatest ingredients in history. Filfil No. 7, the garlic hot sauce, adds a spicy-garlicky kick to barbecued ribs, while Filfil No. 8, a sweet and spicy garlic sauce, makes for a fun dip for chips or carrot slices during a picnic.
Cost: From $12
Buy it at: Filfil Foods

Thirty Acre's

Thirty Acre’s Not-So-Sour Kraut
Once limited to baseball stadiums, your grandma’s refrigerator, and the entire country of Germany, sauerkraut is having a moment. In addition to a growing awareness of sauerkraut’s health benefits, it’s also a favorite food of artisanal food makers around the country, who are doing creative things with this fermented cabbage dish. Maine’s Thirty Acre Farm blends local seaweed into theirs; try it mixed with caraway and juniper to perk up your picnic palate.
Cost: $8
Buy it at: Thirty Acre Farm

Get Provence on the palate with lavender syrup
Add a refreshing flavor strata to your warm-weather cocktail with Pink House Alchemy’s lavender syrup, made with pure cane sugar and lavender leaves. Stir some into a vodka or gin and tonic to add in a clean taste to your boozy libation, as if your taste buds were whisked off to the south of France.
Cost: $13
Buy it at: Pink House Alchemy

Legally Addictive Foods

Salty. Sweet. Addictive. And Legal: Crack Cookies
New York City–based Legally Addictive Foods offers precisely what its name says. Case in point: the Crack Cookies, crispy baked crackers covered with chocolate and salted toffee. It’s just impossible to stop eating until the bag is empty—a salty sweet way to end any outdoor eating extravaganza.
Cost: $24
Buy it at: Legally Addictive Foods

The versatile and tasty Umami Shiso Fine Mustard
Anarchy in a Jar’s Umami Shiso Fine Mustard promises to add a dose of dazzle to just about anything barbecue- or picnic-related. Slap some on a hamburger patty, mix it into potato salad, or spread it on bread for a chicken sandwich. The ginger, apple cider vinegar, and shiso leaf can embolden just about anything that’s edible.
Cost: 12-pack for $118
Buy it at: Anarchy in a Jar

Mike's Hot Honey

Mike’s Hot Honey
Want to sweeten up that meat and give it a kick? Add a bit of sweet heat to that baguette slice? Then drizzle some Mike’s Hot Honey, an insanely delicious combination of honey and chile that will boost the bang to any picnic or barbecue food item.
Cost: $10 for 12 oz. bottle
Buy it at: Mike’s Hot Honey

Go ahead, be a jerk with the Victorious B.I.G.
This is not your father’s beef jerky. Righteous Felon’s Victorious B.I.G. (Beer Infused Gastronomy) marries unctuous dried beef and beer to create one flavorful stick of jerky. The infusion of Victory Brewing Company’s stout adds a touch of sweetness to the savory beef.
Cost: $30 for four bags plus free shipping
Buy it at: Righteous Felon

Amish Baskets

Awesomely Amish baskets
You need something to carry all this goodness in. Go Amish. And it doesn’t mean you have to avoid technology. These super-traditional picnic baskets, handmade by Iowa-based Amish Baskets, are sturdy enough to endure enough picnics for a lifetime. The medium-sized baskets come with a handy tray, too.
Cost: $70
Buy it at: Amish Baskets

Break bread with Manresa
One of the best bakeries in the country, this Northern California company—whose sister restaurant, Manresa, is one of the most acclaimed on the planet—recently began shipping bread from coast to coast. The Pullman loaf is just organic white flour, salt, water, and yeast, but its crunchy exterior and soft interior make it divine. They ship every Tuesday afternoon, so your loaf should arrive just in time for the weekend.
Cost: $40 for four loaves
Buy it at: Manresa Bread

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