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Feb 25, 2005 01:12 PM

Need fresh basil

  • t

Is there fresh basil out there somewehere now? Where?(If relevant, I am in NYC) general guidance is ok..

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  1. Most of the commercial stuff is grown in greenhouses these days so it's no longer particularly seasonal. It should be pretty much everywhere including pseudo-upscale grocery stores like Food Emporium, etc. Corner veggie/salad bar convenience stores may not have it but a lot of those places do.

    NYC is pretty big, so if you want a specific mention, tell use where you are. ;)

    6 Replies
    1. re: MikeG

      Anywhere in NYC is know that everything is just a train ride away...don't ya?

      1. re: trey

        And you know that you can get basil in just about any Korean grocery...don't ya?

        1. re: Eric P.

          Yes, after 28 years of riding the trains by myself (and with my parents before I was around 12), I'm more than familiar with the NYC subway system. But why on earth would I travel to get something that's ubiquitous in all but the poorest neighborhoods in the city?

          I'll spend an hour on the train roundtrip to get better Parmigiano than what's available in my neighborhood (and you can get pretty Parm here on the lower UWS) but for basil during the Winter? Why? It's all the same tough-leaved, menthol-y stuff grown in greenhouses.

          But if you really want specifics, OK, lessee. In my neighborhood: Citarella's, Fairway, Zabar's, Westside market, Food Emporium, Pioneer, Gristedes, the Korean grocery on Columbus and 73rd, the one on 71st, the Korean fruit market on Broadway a block below Zabar's, Whole Foods, the Korean grocery on 8th Ave. and 51st St., the supermarket just east of Broadway on 57th St. I could go on, but if I go outside my neighborhood I'll get carpal tunnel before I've made even minor headway into the list....

          1. re: MikeG

            lessee, huh? LOL! but most of your suggestions is just a stone's throw away and not by train...go figure! And yes, I would go tho the South of Bronx for this if I had to because I need it that badly, hence the train ride comment. Are you that humorless or just sensitive?

          2. re: Eric P.

            nope-di-dope, zat's why I am asking..

        2. re: MikeG
          Eldon Kreider

          Unfortunately, basil needs both strong light and warm temperatures to develop full flavor intensity. Greenhouse basil to me is too much like greenhouse tomatoes--cosmetics great but lacking flavor. Availability isn't seasonal, but quality is. Too many supermarkets duck the quality issue by never carrying the good stuff.

        3. Fairway just about always has.

          3 Replies
          1. re: rudylee

            Thank you but you lnow that Fairway's produce is more often times than not, very bruised...any other suggestions?

            1. re: trey

              Nonsense. I've been shopping in Fairway 3-5 times a week for the past 14 years and their produce is in no worse shape than any produce market I've been in in the city (and where food is concerned, I do get around.)

              1. re: MikeG

                Well I acknowledge what you've said BUT I beg to differ. The one place where you can get much much better produce is Integral Yoga on 14th street. beats fairway everytime. even whole foods on some days, if not most, has better produce than fairway. just my opinion...

          2. Trader Joe's has it.

            1. seems like you'll find it, as people have been saying, in most well-stocked places. whole foods is a good bet. fresh basil isn't really a specialty item...

              1. j
                Jane Hathaway

                Much to my surprise, I just bought some of the best basil I've ever seen at Whole Foods a few minutes ago. I'm in the Bay Area so I don't know if your local Whole Foods has some of similar quality now or not. It's always hit or miss for me. Good luck.