When you’re a kid, every backyard barbecue feels like a brush with Summer magic, and the best memories are made getting soaked in the sprinkler or enjoying a crisp piece of watermelon under the Summer sun. While we may not be able to stay kids forever, we can always hold onto that sweet Summer feeling, and we can keep making memories at epic Summertime barbecues! This week, join Oliver’s in planning the ultimate Backyard Barbecue bash. We’ll talk you through the ins and outs of planning the kind of barbecue that’ll have you feeling like a kid again, although you’ll find nary a juice box in sight – this barbecue is all grown up!
Set the Stage
While we’re sure your backyard is beautiful, there are a few small changes anyone can make pre-‘cue to really give it that extra zing! If you’re planning a daytime barbecue, make sure there’s plenty of shade to keep everyone cool and sunburn-free; if you have one, set up a weighted umbrella to offer shade right where you need it. If not, try safely suspending a piece of thick cloth or canvas over part of your yard to provide some DIY shade. For an evening barbecue, set up lights to bridge the transition from day to night! Stringing up fairy lights is a great way to add ambiance with ease, or you really can’t go wrong with a little tiki torch action (just make sure to practice good fire safety or you might end up the one being barbecued). Plus, stock up on Anti-Bug Spray from Badger for $7.49 each (4 oz bottle) to keep the mosquitos at bay as the sun goes down!
Clear a space in your yard for games, and if you have or are planning to set up a pool, set out some towels for people to use as needed. Finally, make sure there’s plenty of seating! If you have space for tables, set up a couple where you can eat your delicious, barbecue feast, or simply scatter seating around the yard where you can fit it. For those planning on grilling, make sure everything is prepped beforehand to prevent last-minute grill-tastrophes. Scrub the grate and discard any collected grease to ensure everything is clean and safe. If you’re using a gas grill, make sure your propane tank is full and all your burners are working properly; for a charcoal grill, stock up on plenty of charcoal to keep everything cooking, like Lazzari Mesquite Charcoal for $3.99 each (6.75 lb. bag). You’ll also want a couple of clean spatulas handy for all manner of flippery! Of course, if you happen find yourself in a grill-related jam come barbecue-time, you can always head to your local Oliver’s for delicious, house-made barbecue specialties like Smoked Tri Tip or Pulled Pork Sandwiches!
Grab Some Games
Everyone loves games at a barbecue! Keep the party going with easy field day classics like Ring Toss, Bobbing for Apples, or a Three-Legged Race, or up the competition with backyard favorites like Corn Hole, Lawn Bowling, or Badminton. For the more adventurous barbecue-er, set up buckets partially filled with water for a game of Giant Beer Pong! This beer-free version is perfect for when you want to enjoy Beer Pong without the booze, just make sure you have a different Summer sipper to keep you cool.
Bring On the Beverages
Every party needs some beverages, and a backyard barbecue is no exception! Stock up on delicious summertime favorites like Santa Cruz Lemonade for $1.79 (+CRV, 32 oz. bottle) or a 12-pack of Waterloo Sparkling Waters for just $3.99 (+CRV). With an assortment of delicious flavors to choose from, it’s easy to stock up on drinks everyone will love, just make sure you have plenty of ice to keep it all cold. For a grown-ups-only, chill-down a bottle of Kenwood’s Six Ridges Chardonnay for $12.99 (750 ml. bottle), or check out our line-up of pre-mixed cocktails! These conveniently canned, premium quality cocktails are the easy way to enjoy a mixed drink while busy with a barbecue, and with dozens of cocktails to choose from, anyone can bring the bar to their own backyard!
To up the ante and satisfy your inner child, use your favorite cocktail, beer, or wine to make a grown-up float! That’s right, root beer isn’t the only float in the game anymore – the big boys have come out to play. Try topping sour-and-sweet lime sorbet with The Copper Can’s gingery Moscow Mule ($2.99+CRV, 12 oz. can), or put an adult spin on the classic Orange Vanilla Float with Kyla Riviera’s Blood Orange Fizz (2 for $5+CRV, 12 oz. can) over decadent vanilla gelato. Keep things light by pouring a Monkeywrench “Bee’s Knees” Craft Hard Seltzer (2 for $4+CRV, 12 oz. can) over tart scoops of red raspberry sorbet, or go heavy with a Healdsburg IPA ($8.99+CRV, 6 pack/12 oz. cans) and real caramel ice cream. Whatever you choose, top your incredible adult creations with garnishes like fresh mint, whipped cream, fresh fruit, or your favorite cookie!
Feed the Fun
It’s just not a proper barbecue without an assortment of delectable eats, but never fear – Oliver’s has got you covered. Stock up on grilling favorites from our Meat/Seafood Department! For red-meat lovers, we love our slow-smoking our USDA Prime Trimmed Tri Tip ($9.99/lb) to tender perfection, or quickly grill up a Bone-In Rib Eye Steak ($17.99/lb) for an ultra-easy and super succulent main course. If beef isn’t your thing, why not smoke up some lean and meaty Baby Back Pork Ribs ($4.99/lb) or throw down some flavorful Rocky Air-Chilled Whole Chicken Legs ($2.99/lb)? No matter what you pick, you can rest assured knowing that it will come with the Oliver’s quality guarantee! Of course, we can’t forget about the vegetarians – make sure to throw some hearty portobello mushrooms or marinated tofu on the grill as well, just don’t let them touch the steaks!
Add some veggies to the mix with delicious sides made from the best of Oliver’s Produce Department, like this Avocado and Tomato Salad made with Organic Heirloom Tomatoes ($2.49/lb) and Organic English Cucumbers ($1.99/ea). If you’re looking to make it even easier, drop by our Deli for freshly made salads and sides perfect for your next barbecue spread! Pick up classic like Oliver’s Own Potato or Macaroni Salads ($5.99-$8.99/lb), or be the Belle of the barbecue with favorites like Oliver’s Own Coleslaw (3.99/lb). Last but not least, make sure you check out our Fresh Cut Produce for healthy snacks and sides without the hassle, just don’t forget your favorite dressing for dipping – YUM!
Finally, we absolutely cannot forget dessert! For a easy yet sophisticated dessert that’s light enough for the hottest summer scorcher, grill up fresh White or Yellow Peaches ($2.99/lb) and top with a drizzle of local honey; serve these juicy gems with a wedge of “Boujee Blue” cheese from Old Chatham Creamery ($17.99/lb), a Roquefort-style blue just bursting with umami goodness and the perfect stone fruit complement. If baked goods are more your barbecue-bag, use Organic California Cherries ($6.99/lb) to whip up an easy Cherry Almond Pound Cake. This summery twist on the classic confection is delicious all by itself, but if you’re feeling frisky, simply slather a slice in butter and throw it on the grill for a 1 minute on each side! Top your toasty grilled pound cake with ice cream, seasonal fruit, and whipped cream, or simply enjoy it all on its own.
Whether you’re young or young at heart, everyone deserves to enjoy some fun in the sun, and with these summery deals from Oliver’s, it’s the perfect time to enjoy your best backyard barbecue yet! For more great grilling recipes, click HERE, or check out all the Summer fun in store with our ad!