Make the most of London’s gorgeous green spaces with a picnic in the park this summer. Don’t want to mess about cutting the crusts off your own sandwiches, or have an Instagram feed to maintain? Then order a gourmet picnic hamper or pick up a posh takeaway lunch en route to your chosen park. Here’s where you can find one.
Words: Nicky Evans
What: When it comes to posh picnics, it doesn’t get much better than this. There’s no slogging your gastro-hamper to the park; instead, your personal butler will greet you at your chosen spot, lay out a blanket, unpack the food, and leave you to it. Treats include chorizo and goats’ cheese Scotch eggs, poached salmon, herby salads and a spiced chicken brochette, plus two desserts.
How much: £39.50 per person
When: Available all summer (advanced notice is required)
Where: St James’s Place, SW1A 1NY
What: We love London, but even we have to admit that Berlin is hipper. So we dig the idea of this grand café’s take on an urban picnic, Berlin style. The three uber-cool steel hampers include Bavarian delicacies themed around the wine inside. Eat yours on a grass-topped table on the restaurant’s terrace, take it canalside or to Regent’s Park.
How much: From £64 for two, including wine
When: Available until 10 September (pre-ordering is required)
Where: 1 King’s Boulevard, N1C 4BU
Mount Street Deli
What: This is no ordinary deli: this is Caprice Holdings’ version of a deli. And it’s in Mayfair. So when you order one of their picnic hampers, you can expect only the best, with many dishes sourced from the group’s flagship restaurants, including Scott’s. You’re only a short walk from Hyde Park and the Serpentine – the perfect setting for a chic spread.
How much: From £45 for two (free delivery within W1)
When: Available all year round (48 hours’ notice is required)
Where: 100 Mount Street, W1K 2TG
What: This London sibling to Alain Ducasse’s St Tropez stunner serves exquisite, flavour-packed dishes to Knightsbridge’s high rollers in the Bulgari Hotel. Fill your hamper with the likes of caponata with a soft-boiled egg, smoked-salmon sandwiches and chocolate tart from the à la carte takeaway menu and enjoy your spread in nearby Hyde Park.
How much: £19 each
When: Available until 31 August. Order between 11.30am-2.30pm; pick up 45 minutes later from the hotel bar
Where: Bulgari Hotel, 171 Knightsbridge, SW7 1DW
What: This laid-back, Spanish-focused wine and cheese bar comes up with all the goods in its picnic hampers: inside, you’ll find a blanket, cutlery, crockery, napkins and glassware, as well as cheeses, charcuterie and deli-style nibbles to accompany the Hedone sourdough and Spanish wine. Polish it off in nearby Embankment Gardens or Lincoln’s Inn Fields (you need to return the non-edibles afterwards).
How much: from £35.
When: Available all year round. Order between 11am-6pm and collect your hamper within one hour.
Where: 7 Maiden Lane, WC2E 7NA.
Tom’s Kitchen Canary Wharf
What: Next time a scorcher is predicted when you’ll be stuck in the office, think laterally and reclaim your lunch hour. The bespoke picnics at Tom’s Kitchen are just the ticket: they’re packed with gourmet baguettes, posh popcorn, fresh juices, homemade flapjacks and the deli’s signature brownies. Then head to the river, or join the throngs in Canada Square Park.
How much: £25 for two; £45 for four (£28/£48 with prosecco or Champagne)
When: Available all summer. Order from the deli counter the day before (24 hours’ notice required)
Where: Units 1-2, 11 Westferry Circus, E14 4HD
For more eating and drinking ideas outside, check out our guides to London’s best alfresco restaurants, London’s best alfresco bars and London’s best beer gardens.
This article was published 11 July 2017