Shop Small Day 178: Cookout Necessities

Hopefully everyone had a safe 4th of July filled with great food, plenty of laughs, and fireworks.  It was a gorgeous night for a cook-out, even better that the kids could play outside all night.  Maybe our summer weather has finally arrived.  Want to shop small for your next backyard gathering?

These 4 shops have everything you need: beer, meat, fruit, dessert, and other necessities!

imageCans, bottles, tap- who cares as long as it’s cold!  In case you do have a preference, though, Two Brothers beers are available in all three.  Stop into either of their locations and you can pick up a half or full keg for your next gathering.  They also have cans, bottles, and growlers cold and ready to go!   Stop by their “gift shop” and you can even pick up a natural citronella candle poured in a recycled beer bottle.

imageCold drink in one hand, a burger in the other, right? Niman Ranch meats are all raised humanely and sustainably. These aren’t burgers processed and packaged in some huge factory with a sticker slapped on as a label. Niman Ranch is a community of over 700 small, independent U.S. family farmers all committed to raising livestock (pork, beef, lamb, and poultry) ethically. Although I don’t eat red meat often, Niman Ranch has, by far, the best taste and quality I’ve ever had. Where can you buy it? Lemon Tree Grocer. If you’re looking for brats, though, head to the Wurst Kitchen.

imageWhat’s a cookout without watermelon and corn?! If your local farm stands aren’t open yet, and you can’t make it to the farmer’s market- hit the produce shop that makes those trips for you. Peter Rubi! Feels like an old-fashioned grocer: friendly employees, great produce, and they’ll even let you sample something if you ask!

imageOf course you need dessert too! What’s more American than apple pie?! Or, you could choose banana cream, or hoosier sugar pie. The possibilities are endless. If you aren’t making your own pie- head to Hoosier Mama Pie Company. Full pies, mini pies, even slices…all are delicious (trust me, I’ve tried several!).

imageEven if you didn’t make the dessert, it can still look homemade when you transport it in your PieBox! Made in Chicago, these raw pine boxes will safely transport pies (and other desserts) to the party, or keep family members from digging in before the festivities begin! You can pick up your own piebox at Favor the Earth. Need natural bug spray, hostess gifts, or activities to keep the kids busy? You’ll find those there too!

What’s a “must have” for your backyard gatherings?

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