Perfect Picnics: What to Take

Madison Park Ready to battle swarms of Capitol Hill hipsters for a spot on the beach at Madison Park? Don't do so without proper nourishmentthey may be skinny, but they'll beat you off with their trucker caps if they have to. And don't think they're afraid to use their white belts as weapons, either. CC's Gourmet Burgers Grab an order or two of the best onion rings in town and a bag full of burgers. The Every Thang Burger's got everything good hipster-fighting fuel shouldbeef, bacon, two kinds of cheese, and to top it all, hot links. 2600 E. Union St., 206-324-2119. CENTRAL DISTRICT $ Scoop du Jour This family-run deli sells humongous sandwiches. If you're an egg salad fan, you'll love their versionit comes piled high with sprouts and tomatoes. But the biggest appeal of Scoop du Jour has to be the ice cream case. Get a scoop (or two), and thanks to the Scoop's convenient location, you'll make it back to the beach before your strawberry ice cream melts. 4029 E. Madison St., 206-325-9562. MADISON PARK $ Golden Gardens Avoid the disappointment of not scoring a barbecue pit at this all-too-popular sandy beach by bringing your own premade vittles. While everyone else is busy tending their fires, you'll have plenty of time for tossing the Frisbee or just enjoying the sunset over the Olympic Mountains. Port Chatham Packing Co. Outlet Before joining the long line of cars into Golden Gardens, grab some delicious vacuum-packed soft-cured smoked salmon. Made from trimmed pieces of the pretty stuff, it tastes just as good and costs half as much. Don't forget to bring the cream cheese, sweet onion, and bagels with you. All right, bagel chips. All right, crackers: We're easy. 2821 N.W. Market St., 206-781-7260. BALLARD $$ Roxy's Deli at Cascioppo's This deli inside a meat market sells sandwiches that rival anything on the Lower East Side. Get a Reuben made with pastrami that seems to melt in your mouth. Or if pastrami isn't your thing, grab one of Cascioppo's sausage heroes, stuffed full of grilled onions and provolone. Whatever sandwich you get, be sure to get an order of beer-battered onion rings. 2364 N.W. 80th St., 206-784-6121. CROWN HILL $ Lincoln Park Lincoln Park has too much to do. Spend the day hiking the paths and trails, take a swim in Colman Pool, or just settle down on the beach and catch some rays. Whatever you do, you'll need plenty of carbs to power your day. Don't worry; we won't tell the Atkins people. Matt's Famous Chili Dogs On your drive out west, cut through Georgetown and stop at Matt's for a calorie-laden dog that is definitely worth it. Your choice of hot dogs, kielbasa, or Italian sausage is wrapped in a doughy bun and drenched in chili. The combination is to die for and will give you enough fuel for a day of fun. 6615 E. Marginal Way S., 206-726-0418. GEORGETOWN $ Metropolitan Market (formerly Admiral Thriftway) Already in West Seattle? Then stop by the deli here and walk out with a picnic lunch perfect for a day of lounging. Metropolitan's deli offerings rival those of any downtown gourmet shop, and the market is just up the way from Lincoln Park. 2320 42nd Ave. S.W., 206-937-0551. WEST SEATTLE $ Parsons Gardens Who knows what will happen under the fading light in the seclusion of Parsons. The sunset will surely help to set the mood, but you've got to have just the right stuff on your menu. Nothing too heavy, and definitely make sure to leave the fragrant stuff at home. Dolce Vita Sweeten your sweetie's mood with one of Vita's freshly prepared gelatos. Not into dairy? Then try the mojito sorbetto, made with lime, rum, and mint; it's sure to loosen any remaining inhibitions. 2123 Queen Ann Ave. N., 206-284-3460. QUEEN ANNE $ Le Fournil They say chocolate is the ultimate aphrodisiac, and Le Fournil artfully prepares chocolate cream puffs that will certainly aid your cause. They also offer fruit tarts, 飬airs, and other French pastries that have been known to unleash hormones. 3230 Eastlake Ave. E., 206-328-6523. EASTLAKE $ Magnuson Park Wanna see what wholesome families do on a sunny day? Then check out the barbecue pits at this sprawling park. But don't worry; there are plenty of spots for unwholesome activities. Find a cozy cove, and the only witnesses to your debauchery will be on boats out on Lake Washington, and they'll be too drunk to care. Blue Plate Express This gourmet box-lunch outlet offers everything from coconut curry tofu to crab cakes to lasagna. They've got the right meal for every mood and occasion, from a chicken sandwich for two to shrimp cakes with roasted pepper aﯬi. 7332 35th Ave. N.E., 206-525-2511. WEDGWOOD $$ The Olive Branch The sandwiches here are great, and the marinated New Zealand venison sandwich is just the thing to show her how cosmopolitan you are. They have a wide offering of salads, pastries, finger foods, and pizza, too. Anything you may want for a picnic can be found here. 1421 N.E. 80th St., 206-985-1313. NORTH SEATTLE $ Piper's Orchard There's nothing more romantic than a grassy patch shaded by gnarled old apple trees. The sounds of the creek trickling down the hill can't hurt either. It's a short walk to get here, but the mood is set at the beginning of the trail as you dip into the lush vegetation. Greenwood Bakery and Caf鼯B> All sorts of baked goods and pastries can be found here, along with cookies, tarts, and cr譥 brl饮 Everyone likes sugar, so perhaps a little of that affection will transfer to you. 7227 Greenwood Ave. N., 206-783-7181. GREENWOOD $ Family Doughnut Shop Doughnuts aren't renowned for their amatory attributes. But who knows what can happen once you get started on a little lustful gluttony. 2100 Northgate Way, 206-386-9107. NORTHGATE $ Kerry Park There's a reason camera-toting tourists flock to this amazing viewpoint. The spectacle of Elliott Bay, downtown, and the shipping traffic in the Sound isn't to be missed. But don't worry about the droves of day-trippers; just focus on your company, the view, and the food. Dish D'lish If your company isn't too comforting, than one of the domestic dishes from D'lish will surely bolster your spirits. Stick-to-your-sides classics like mac 'n' cheese and meatloaf will remind you of all that is right in the world, even if your date is the wrong one. 1501 Pike Place, 206-223-1848. PIKE PLACE MARKET $ Michou What, your palate runs a little more sophisticated than classic American? The Italian fare that is the theme here will surely please. Deviations like Tunisian cucumber salad and torta espa� are on the menu too, but it is all molto sophisticated. 1904 Pike Place, 206-448-4758. PIKE PLACE MARKET $ Olallie State Park So what if you have to drive out here. The seclusion accompanied by old-growth trees and views of the mountains make the trip out worth it. Greenbank Farms Country Store Forgot your cheese at home or need some hummus to round out your picnic? Greenbank has all the cheese and crackers you could desire, plus a variety of salsas, sauces, and dips. 29700 S.E. Hi Point Way, 425-222-6545. PRESTON $-$$ South Passage Point Park The paradox that is urban life is no more evident than here. The sounds of cars buzzing overhead on the freeway and zooming seaplanes are juxtaposed next to the serenity of the lake and fish struggling against the current. Pete's Supermarket Wine and cheese from Pete's are the perfect accompaniment to an intellectual discourse about the plight of wildlife in an urban setting. Or perhaps just lie back, take in the sun, and let the wine go to your head. 58 E. Lynn St., 206-322-2660. WALLINGFORD $-$$ Boulangerie If your day on the water leans toward the lighter side, then there is no better food than Boulangerie's light and flaky pastries. The sweet-tart apple puff pastry and almond-kissed pithivier are both great. The have delicious meat sandwiches, but who wants something as heavy as that? 2200 N. 45th St., 206-679-2319. WALLINGFORD $ Sunset Hill Viewpoint Park This great viewpoint beats the crowds down below at Golden Gardens and offers grand views of Shilsole Bay accompanied by silence. The Other Coast Caf鼯B> Other Coast offers the perfect nontraditional accompaniment to grand views: a well-made Reuben with pastrami that is tender and peppery, almost distracting you from the splendor that is Puget Sound. 5315 Ballard Ave. N.W., 206-789-0936. BALLARD $ Caf頂esalu The croissants and brioches here are outstanding and will only enhance your day at the park. Besalu's pastries are handmade and fresh, and they go perfectly with fresh air and sun. 5909 24th Ave. N.W., 206-789-1463. BALLARD $

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