Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Your Eyes Are Like Limpid Pools Of Chicken Fat

For those out of the loop of that reference -these are the words of Wimpy to his newly dear Olive Oyl. In response to Popeye's anger, Wimpy proposes an eating duel. 

Until recently, I spent a little more on a three liter container of XV olive oil for pan frying and much less on a 17 oz bottle of DeCecco "All Italian Olives" XV olive oil for dipping, salads, flavor. This oil is a consistently fruity xv olive oil. I had always bought this DeCecco oil at one of our local "farms," Golden Farms, where it sold consistently for less, as did their Organic Valley milk (two 1/2 gallons for $7), among others.

For months now, workers at Golden Farms have been picketing along with labor groups in front of the store. Months ago we decided to stop shopping there. It really is our only serious grocer within quick walking distance, but we've gotten used to traveling farther. Honestly, I just wish the owner would resolve the issue so this contentious corner can go back to the place I by Bonne Maman preserves at 2 for $5. Yet I can't understand why the owner isn't fined by the city if he is not paying what the city says he is supposed to pay.

Anyways, we had run down the last of our DeCecco. Months ago, Frank, owner of Caputos on Court Street, had given me a lesson in extra virgin olive oil. I told him then that I wasn't ready, but this past Saturday, I made the leap and bought the two above: one Italian, one Californian.  Frank had asked me if I wanted peppery or fruity, but I ended up picking neither. The Californian is solidly grassy, really, like eating a fresh cut lawn, and the Italian more like green butter. What impressed us was the body of  both oils, that they had body at all, that it didn't act as a liquid so much as a fluid food.

Given how we use these oils (I still bought a 3 liter for frying), they really weren't all that pricey. Roughly 10 bucks for the Californian and $13.50 for the Italian -or maybe the other way around (I hate fluorescent price tags on my shelves and rip them off immediately). The same size as the DeCecco (1/2 liter) but more complex, integrating better with the simplest companions like bread or tomatoes. In fact, I think I just discovered my dinner.


  1. May I also recommend the olive oils at Saratoga Olive Oil:

    My fave is the Manzanillo, I like strong, heavy-bodied Spanish olive oil.

  2. You tear the price tags off? That's funny. And I thought I was anal. I like to leave them on for reference. After living places where price labels were a thing of the past, I appreciate that you can still shop at markets in nyc that hand label their items.

  3. Those tags always end up on the bottom of my shoe, or worse. Its funny that price labels are a progressive thing. We fought for them in NYS in the early 90s.


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