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The best picnic hampers and ready-made feasts for al fresco dining

From Fortnum and Mason’s sumptuous spread to Daylesford's organic offering, saviour the sunny afternoons with these chic sets

With the seemingly never-ending glorious spring weather set to stay and lockdown measures starting to loosen, there’s never been a better time to enjoy London’s green spaces. And what could be lovelier than settling down with a basket full of delicious food and drink to while away an afternoon in the sun? Some of London’s finest restaurants and food halls are serving up bumper picnic offerings, packed full of everything you need for a seriously smart al fresco meal. Here we’ve rounded up the best picnic hampers to buy right now.

Audrey Hepburn, Love in the Afternoon, 1957

The Fortnum’s Food Hall Hamper

The Foodhall Hamper

Fortnum’s award-winning food hall is the place to go for quintessential British picnic hampers. This basket features a cherry-picked selection of all the most delectable necessities, from their mini spiced orange ham and smoked salmon to beetroot crackers, pistachio and clotted cream biscuits and Cave Aged Cheddar from the West Country. And to top it all off? A bottle of rich Argentinian Malbec.
£125; fortnumandmason.com

Daylesford Favourites Hamper

Daylesford Favourites Picnic Hamper

One of the most sustainable organic farms in the UK, Daylesford’s chic farm shops are found in London’s smartest postcodes, from Pimlico and Notting Hill to Marylebone and South Kensington, and offer some of the finest produce in the city. While their stores and cafés may remain closed, you can still enjoy their award-winning food and drink at home with this picnic hamper, which is packed full of treats, from organic wine, Prosecco and fresh juices to biscuits, fine tea, award-winning preserves and small-batch British honey.
£200; daylesford.com

Paxton & Whitfield Kensington Hamper
Paxton & Whitfield's The Kensington Cheese and Wine Picnic Hamper

Britain’s oldest cheesemonger, Paxton & Whitfield was founded in 1797 and supplies all the cheese to the Royal Family, hand delivering it on foot from their Jermyn Street shop to Buckingham Palace and Clarence House. Find out why it’s the Queen’s favourite by ordering their Kensington Hamper, which comes with a selection of five of their most popular cheeses, as well as a range of preserves, biscuits and wine.
£175; paxtonandwhitfield.co.uk

Claridge’s Davies and Brook To Go Box

Claridges Fried Chicken

When the legendary Mayfair hotel added their elevated take on fried chicken to the bar menu at their newest restaurant, Davies and Brook, it was an immediate hit – now they’ve launched a ‘to go’ box featuring the popular dish. Delivered in one of the hotel’s chic pale green bags, the box comes with a portion of buttermilk fried chicken made with chef Daniel Humm’s signature spice mix, along with a selection of sides including potato and celery salad, marinated aubergine, broad bean hummus and a freshly baked parker house roll. For dessert there’s raspberry cheesecake and to wash it all down, you can choose from two of the bar’s summer cocktails: a refreshing Strawberry Milk Punch or a zingy Elderflower Cooler.
£35, available every Thursday, Friday and Saturday evening
claridges.co.uk

The London Shell Company Picnic Box

London Shell Company's picnic box

Specialising in fresh British seafood and fish, the London Shell Company normally operates from a charming refurbished canal boat on Regent’s Canal. While they’re not open for business at the moment, they’re making up picnic and BBQ boxes to bring the finest the sea has to offer straight into our homes. Changing on a weekly basis and delivered on Fridays, the boxes generously feed two people and come with delights like smoked mackerel, cured Dorset char and prawns with mayonnaise, washed down with a bottle of Grand Duchess English sparkling wine from Hampshire.
£45; londonshellco.com

Main image: Audrey Hepburn, Love in the Afternoon, 1957
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