40 years ago, Gustavo Cosaro and Mario Tagliati started making picnic baskets out of a Southern California garage, and Picnic Time was born. Now on its second generation of family ownership, with sons Paul and Danny taking the lead, Picnic Time has never lost sight of this simple, yet profound mission: to inspire people to spend quality time with family and friends. Over the years, the company has grown into today’s Picnic Time Family of Brands – including ONIVA,LEGACY, TOSCANA, and PICNIC TIME – creating an innovative product line of well over 10,000 proprietary and officially licensed indoor and outdoor leisure, entertaining, and gift items.
Before making it to sunny Southern California, Gustavo and Mario survived poverty and stints in orphanages in post-war Italy. It was these struggles that taught them the true value of hard work, balanced with the freedom to let loose and have a good time with their loved ones. In 1975, in Woodland Hills, California, they opened “Two Gentlemen from Verona,” a wine and cheese shop, and they soon started hearing one question more than any other: “You have all the supplies for a perfect picnic. Do you have a picnic basket we could put this in?” Great idea!
That one recurring customer need sparked inspiration, innovation, and a whole bunch of ingenuity. Back then, nobody was making a basket that met their standards – so after six months of tinkering and testing, they created their first ‘perfect’ picnic basket. Sales grew regionally at first, and then nationally through trade shows. Good old-fashioned word-of-mouth also helped, so much so that their entire focus shifted to creating a company just to maximize that one exceptional idea.
“At the heart of it, family is what Picnic Time is all about,” said Paul Cosaro, Captain Picnic. “What’s a picnic at its core? It’s memories, time with loved ones, and having shared experiences. Our products help make all of Gustavo and Mario’s efforts worth it, for family and friends alike.”
Today, Picnic Time still sells affordable and high-quality European-style picnic baskets, yet with its evolution, Picnic Time Family of Brands now offers more – lots more: high-end dinner party essentials, camping chairs, beach gear, picnic blankets, beer, wine, and spirit accoutrements, plus a wide variety of officially licensed sports and entertainment properties like the NFL, MLB, NHL, Disney, Star Wars, Warner Brothers’ Harry Potter and DC, just to name a few. There’s everything you need for the perfect picnic, cocktail party, tailgate, romantic hike, sporting event at the park, backyard BBQ, holiday bash, wedding present or birthday gift. Picnic Time has you covered.
Two hardworking immigrants, a family business, growing a small storefront into a full family of brands, a startup from the garage, a second-generation carrying the torch… Wow, American dream much? With forty years of business, everyone on Team Picnic really is living the dream; making life a picnic, one quality product at a time. Learn more at picnictime.com