Glamping is a relatively new word or colloquialism that has been recently added to many dictionaries including the Oxford dictionary. It is a common word in the camping world to the many who have taken camping to a whole new level. It’s meaning though can vary for those who refer to their own nouveau-style of enjoying the all-outdoors, as each camping enthusiast has their own variation of the definition of glamping.


“Glamping” – a new word for a new kind of travel defined as glamorous camping. When you are glamping there is no need to pitch a tent or a sleeping bag to unroll. – glamping (glam-ping), noun: Informal  – The activity of camping with some of the comforts of home.


Wikipedia – Glamping is a portmanteau of glamour and camping and describes a style of camping with amenities.


For those of us foodies from the Napa Valley, Glamping has taken on a whole new meaning: “Gourmet Camping” – Just because you are camping doesn’t mean you have to eat beans and weenies and food out of a can. Au Contraire! The best part of camping is bringing the freshest ingredients and the inspiration to prepare one’s favorite meals in the all outdoors. Bring your creativity and imagination and let the flavors take you to a new place at your favorite camping spot. And let’s not forget about the wines – a key ingredient to pair with the evenings fare by the campfire dining table. You have probably heard from many that food just seems to taste better when prepared in the surrounds of nature whether you are at the coast or in the mountains – just like wine tastes better with food! It is a true fact!


There are several key ingredients to creating the perfect glamping “Gourmet Camping”, it is all about being prepared with the perfect necessities:

  • Plan your meals ahead of time so that you know what to shop for in advance, just in case you are not near a local market near you camp spot.

  • Design your menu to pair with your camp location, lighter fare for warmer locations and more comfort food for the chillier spots. And if you are by the coast, don’t forget to pick up some fresh oysters along the way.

  • Have the right essential accessories to assist in your preparation.

  • Don’t forget to bring along a delicious selection of wines and craft beers.

In addition to your usual camping essentials and accessories you may want to think about including these items to your list if you haven’t already.

  • A good BBQ Grill is a must – You don’t necessarily need a large grill unless you are in a big group, and bring along with some mesquite charcoal, it adds to the flavor of the grilled dishes. If it is a gas grill you prefer that works well too.

  • A good camping stove that works on propane – even though you have a stove in your camper, it is much for fun to do the meal preparation outside. Afterall, you did come here for the ambiance of the outdoors.

  • Several really nice pans for cooking over the grill or the fire, a cast iron pan from Lodge is a good choice. You will also want to bring along a selection of sturdy pots and pans to use on your cooking stove as well.

  • Utensils are also important – so be sure you have some good sharp knives, tongs, and a variety of wood spoons and metal spatulas. Don’t forget a basting brush, essential when prepping and seasoning your meats and vegies to grill.

  • A grilling pan to throw on top of the BBQ to do roasted vegies, roasted breads and a variety of other grilled items like shrimp or shish kebobs.

  • Spices, Oils and condiments – bring along your favorite spices and cooking oils. Good Olive Oils is a must. Don’t forget your favorite Salsa and butter too!

  • Wine essentials: stemmed or stemless plastic wine goblets, a good wine opener, wine stoppers for the wine you might not have finished and to take it to the next level a decanter.

  • Table Décor: An decorative waterproof table cloth, place mats, a decorative flower or plant arrangement for the table, sturdy plastic plates and real knives and forks. A few nice serving platters is a good idea too!

  • A portable music player for your favorite tunes is absolutely essential as it adds to the ambiance of the evening along with some candles, the battery operated ones are the best as they don’t blow out and you don’t have to worry about a fire hazard.

  • Firewood for the campfire is another must, of course if they are allowed at the campsite. Nothing like sitting by the fire with a yummy glass of Napa Valley Cab after a deliciously prepared meal!

It’s all about the prep and the journey to the outdoor dining table. The “piece de resistance” of course is settling down to the table with family and friends and indulging in the finely crafted evenings dinner in the great “all-outdoors”.


Here are a few menu ideas to get your camping taste-buds rolling!

  • Tri-tip marinated in your favorite IPA

  • Grilled Mexican Style Chicken with Black beans and spiced rice

  • Grilled Seasoned Corn on the Cob or a Selection of Seasonal Vegies from the Garden fired right over the grill on the grilling pan

  • Breakfast Scramble with mixed concoction of the night before leftovers with scrambled eggs and your favorite cheese. Huevos Rancheros is a fun option too!

  • Bring along some fresh tomatoes and basil from the garden and create a Caprese Salad.

  • A be sure to bring along a few loafs of fresh bread (my preference is Olive bread) to grill over the fire. Nothing like the smoky flavor of the bread to go along with the evenings fare.


Happy “Glamping” See you by the Campfire!!!