Eating and Drinking Al Fresco And Why You Should Do It More Often!
There’s no arguing that most of us love the Summer and for us here in the UK the rare opportunity to sit outside is a real treat. In recent times, there’s been a trend for UK restaurants and cafes to have tables outside, and not just for smokers – balconies offer lovely views of the city you may never have seen before. Shops begin to entice us further with their garden tables and BBQs. So what is it about dining outside we love so much and why should you do it more often?
I love market days and I try to get down to them as often as I can. There’s something about wandering around in an open air environment and sampling some of the fresh produce, that brings a feeling of contentment. The atmosphere is one of a kind; staff who actually care about their products, the quality of the food all freshly made, bring about an altogether better customer experience. The stress of a busy supermarket (out of stock products, queues, unhelpful staff, harsh lighting) just doesn’t compare! So taking trips to your local market will leave you feeling more relaxed, happy and free from the zombifying artificial lights of shopping centres.
You might still be thinking, eat outside…what?! With wasps buzzing around, bugs drowning in my prosecco and the sun burning my skin?! No thanks! But for me, my happiest and most memorable meals were always the ones that took place outside. Picnics are one of my absolute favourites, I simply adore planning them. I love going somewhere different and feeling the rays of sun on my skin. As we all succumb to the 9-5 work routine, life can get very boring very quickly. You feel tired more often, and start to lose the sense of adventure you had during your carefree student years. Simply shaking up your daily schedule by having an afternoon picnic, not only rejuvenates your excitement for doing something out of the norm, but help recharge your batteries with a healthy boost of vitamin D from the sun. Don’t forget, light is a proven mood enhancer!
Ever had a nasty cold and been unable to taste your food properly? Our sense of smell and taste are so closely linked together that different scents can enhance our perception of what we eat. Give your tastebuds a tantalising treat by taking in all the scents around you. Sitting out in the garden with that pre-soaked cherry wood smoking on the BBQ, can really magnify the tasting experience. Speaking of BBQs…what is it with men and BBQing? Does being outside evoke their primal nature from within? Or do men like the idea of standing by a fire, cooking meat with beer in hand?
It isn’t just about sitting around eating and drinking, either. Going al fresco means you’ll get more exercise too! We spend so much time indoors in front of computers or having tv dinners, but once we’re out it’s a different story altogether. Playing ball games at a picnic/garden party or hiking/cycling to your location, will all benefit your health. And as for the weather, I think it’s just all part of the British experience of expecting rain! Admittedly, I love the sound of the rain from inside a tent, it’s like one of those freakily accurate rainmaker sticks! So don’t let it disappoint you! If you have a summer house, sit inside and enjoy the sound of the rain all whilst making jokes about it!
I’d say that the benefits of eating outdoors outweigh the negatives. If the rays of the sun are going to act like happy pills, if going somewhere different is going to revitalise my sense of child-like adventure, if food is going to taste even better… then I’m all for it. I won’t allow the wasps, or even the UK weather, to put me off.
So what are your thoughts? What do you love about eating outside?