Have you seen the #DestinationSummer virtual road trip from Kohl’s? It’s truly one of my favorite ideas in a long, long time. Basically, Kohl’s asked a bunch of bloggers to step away from the computer and show the world our respective hometowns. And, because I’m still so new to San Francisco, I basically got to be a tourist in my own city! I decided to use this as the perfect opportunity to indulge in two favorites: the beach and s’mores.
We cruised out to a favorite spot of mine, Muir Beach. About 30-45 minutes from San Francisco, the drive to the beach is stunning in and of itself. Once you cross the Golden Gate bridge, follow a windy road to the beach, catching far-off glimpses of the Pacific as you go. I recommend making the trip right at golden hour for that perfect California glow.
Using tons of picnic-friendly tools, textiles, and serving pieces, I laid out my ultimate s’mores bar. To start, I gathered supplies from a few of my favorite neighborhood staples here in Hayes Valley: sweets (such as graham crackers, fancy marshmallows and chocolates, and tonsss of toppings) from Miette, plus sausages and other grillables from The Fatted Calf. Don’t forget firewood!
To create your own s’mores bar, here are a few tips:
- Mix up your toppings: from gummy bears to honey to lavender, it’s always fun to explore different flavor combinations.
- Another fun way to experiment is to offer different alternatives to the traditional graham cracker. I suggest everything pretzels, Nilla wafers, even peanut butter cookies! (While shooting, I discovered that Kimberley has a gluten-free diet, so we thought it would be fun to replace crackers with thinly sliced apple!)
- Don’t forget the fresh fruit, especially here in SF. Since moving here, I can’t stop devouring local blackberries. They are unlike anything I’ve ever tasted.
- Last, but not least, chocolate is king. Splurge on the fancy stuff, in all different flavors and textures. I may have chosen a few based on packaging…
Seriously, what is more fun than playing with your food??
It can get pretty chilly when the sun goes down, so I recommend bringing extra layers. I like to rock a men’s flannel shirt with vintage cut offs for a casual, borrowed-from-the-boys vibe that will also keep me a bit warmer.
Being 100% honest with you, I was really blown away by the awesome outdoor dining pieces I found at Kohl’s. The colors, the materials… even the prices were so good. I definitely plan to use these pieces for more picnics and outings going forward.
links: double old fashioned / pitcher / melamine salad plate / enamel camping bowl and plate / grilling fork / bamboo cutlery / mesh food covers / jute round placemat / acacia tri-server / striped tablecloth / beach towel / flannel shirt
photography by Kimberley Hasselbrink
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Kohl’s. All opinions are my own, and I would never endorse something I didn’t completely love. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep Jojotastic going.