I worked on Tuesday on my actual birthday, but Lance and I both had Wednesday off, so we continued the celebration an extra day. One of my favorite things to do is to have a picnic – especially when it involves Trader Joe’s food!
Lance just upgraded his car to an Explorer, so he was excited to take it on its first adventure. After picking up my free birthday Starbucks drink (chai tea latte) and getting some groceries, we headed to Hillsborough River State Park.
The weather was beautiful – just cold enough that I needed a jacket. We set up our cooler at a picnic table (which was being closely watched by hungry squirrels…)
The Trader Joe’s “Two Buck Chuck” Shiraz is our go-to wine – I’m no sommelier, so it tastes great to me! We paired it with Bacon Cheddar and Manchego cheeses, Chianti red wine salami, Kalamata olive hummus, blackberries, and Everything crackers. (Lance also got Nacho Cheese tortilla chips that are basically Doritos with less chemicals, but we didn’t open them yet…)
The crackers had garlic, onion, sesame, poppy, and caraway seeds, so they were like mini-everything bagels. I liked both cheeses, but the bacon cheddar tastes a bit processed to me (like a higher-end Velveeta). The Chianti salami was fantastic and I’d definitely buy the olive hummus again.
The squirrels kept inching closer and closer, but we know better than to feed them. They were pretty jealous of our feast!
We hiked around the trails for awhile to work off our lunch – it got a bit muddy towards the end. We had to head back home and clean up, because my birthday present was dinner at Bern’s Steakhouse that night! (more on that soon!)
Trader Joe's is located at 3808 W Swann Ave, Tampa, FL 33609 and is open 8am – 9pm every day.