This is not your usual New York summer, but there are some things about summer that will never change. It’s still about a million degrees in the sun, picnics are still popular, and local berries are in season! Organic blueberries from New Jersey have hit our shelves, super sweet and highly flavorful. While blueberries are delicious on their own as a snack, especially these, we thought we’d up the ante and put together a blueberry picnic!
It has to be said that a berry’s best friend is cheese, especially fluffy, zesty cheeses like this fresh chevre from Doe’s Leap in Vermont, and this three-milk cheese, Il Nocciolo, from Alta Langa. Our head cheesemonger, Emilia D’Albero, says, “They are both creamy and bright, with a slight tanginess that make them the perfect pairing with sweet local blueberries on a hot summer day. Add a drizzle of honey, to your liking. They are also both stark white, so the color contrast with the deep purple of the fruit is very striking!” Both are perfect for picnicking, as well, weighing in at only a quarter to a third of a pound. Try a swipe of either cheese on a light cracker and top it with a blueberry for a perfect bite!
Of course, any perfect bite still needs a perfect sip to wash it down. Our colleagues at Wine & Spirits have already laid out some prime blueberry beverages for wine-lovers, but who doesn’t love options? Our beer buyer, Brian Cullen, suggests the Minkey Boodle raspberry sour ale from Thin Man Brewery, as well as the Surf Casting farmhouse ale, brewed with sea salt and lime, from Oxbow Brewing Co. Both are crisp summery options, with tart flavors that contrasts well with the sweetness of the blueberries and lightness of the cheese. If you’re not up for a boozy afternoon, no worries—pick up a Pilot blueberry and lemongrass kombucha for sober sipping that’s not any less delicious or unique.