The Secrets Behind a Mystery Picnic
Recently, my Instagram has been popping up with ads of picnic dates labelled as ‘mystery picnics’, showing a couple or friends with an ‘Instagram worthy’ picnic spread in a stunning mysterious location.
Seeing the ads multiple times got me intrigued. I wanted to know what the ‘mystery’ part of the mystery picnic actually was.
I jumped on the website that runs them, Amazing Co Australia, and followed the steps of how to set it up. I put in my voucher code, chose my location (Canberra) and date (28 March), number of participants (two), added in any dietary requirements and was told how it would work and what I needed to do and bring.
Two days before the day of my picnic, I received an email providing a link to the ‘clues’ that I would unlock on the day.
After resisting the urge to take a peek of the clues early, my friend and I finally unlocked the first clue and solved the first puzzle.
It didn’t take us long to realise that the numbers corresponded with the alphabet, resulting in our first destination: Sonoma Bakery in Braddon.
As we arrived, we were met with a decent line. We were stuck outside on the street for 15 minutes.
Even though I’m a local, I’d never been to Sonoma. I was interested to see what they had. Plus, I thought the line was a good sign.
Once we made it to the front of the queue, we were met with a delicious selection of breads, pastries and sandwiches. They looked and smelled incredible.
When it was our turn to order we told one of the staff we were doing a mystery picnic. We were swiftly handed a fresh baguette.
We ran out of the bakery and were confronted with a fairly straight-forward riddle, something to do with sweet things and bones. I knew straight away our next stop was the vegan café, Sweet Bones, just across the road.
At Sweet Bones we got to choose two cupcakes from their delicious all vegan selection. We opted for the ‘Death by Chocolate’ cupcakes.
Our next clue required a little more effort, and pen and paper (which were told we would need).
After a few failed attempts and missing letters, we worked out our next destination was The Food Co-Op Shop and Café near ANU. Having never heard of this venue before, solving the clue was a little harder.
Feeling like tourists, we got our phone maps out and found The Food Co-Op tucked away in a little side street. Here we were told we would be picking up drinks, fruits and nuts.
The store had a range of spices, fruits, nuts and seeds, all in massive tubs for you to self-serve and weigh using their scales. The lady at the counter told us we could get anything we wanted, coming to the total of $20.
We decided to bypass the fruits and nuts once we saw their organic chocolate coated goods. Using the scales, we got a nice selection of chocolate goji berries, strawberries, sunflower seeds and coffee beans.
I’m not sure if this would classify as a one of Canberra’s hidden gems, but it was nice to be taken somewhere I’d never been.
Our last clue was definitely the hardest, but we refused to use the ‘show me a hint button’.
Solving each image, then subtracting the letters, we got Amici Wine Bar and Deli.
I was delighted to find out that we were going to Amici, as from past experiences, I knew how good their food was.
It was a great way to end the food-finding phase.
I picked up our very generous grazing box and a bottle of wine and unlocked where we would be setting up our picnic.
Haig Park was revealed to be our picnic destination. I was delighted, as I was expecting a more obvious location somewhere around Lake Burley Griffin. The park runs from Braddon into Turner. We decided to go on the Turner side for more peace and quiet.
We were happy with our selection as we laid out our picnic rug and set out our foods. Each item that we picked up along the way worked well together to make a complete picnic.
We had our main savoury items, some sweet treats, and a drink to tie it all in together. The meats and cheese made a perfect sandwich using the fresh baguette – a brilliant lunch that paired well with the wine the team at Amici chose for us. The Oreo topped chocolate cupcakes, while rich, were absolutely delicious. We even had the chocolate coated goods to fall back on if we were still feeling peckish.
On a perfect day like it was, Haig Park was a lovely destination with great tree coverage and open grass spots. The secrets behind a mystery picnic were solved, and greatly enjoyed.