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Dec 2, 2008 10:44 AM

Best olive oil to buy in Manhattan?

I've been buying olive oil from San Pietro restaurant on 54th and Madison, but after being in Italia and having a wonderful oil from a local farmer (makes about 100 bottles a year), I don't consider San Pietro's oil the best anymore. Currently they charge 20USD per 750mL.

The oil from the farmer in Italia had a very soft, yet filling taste, with a hint of salt. Really thick, but felt like water.

Any ideas on the best olive oil which I can buy in Manhattan? And can you give me price/size if you know them.


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  1. Fig and Olive has great olive oil too!

    7 Replies
    1. re: italianagambino

      It looks more like a novelty shop..

      I'm trying to find authentic, great tasting, no "tourist BS" oil (which is why I didn't buy anything when I was in Italia).

      - Update -

      Just looked up Italian oils, and yeah, this isn't what I'm looking for " fresh herbs, bright flavor and round body. " I want PURE oil. But, thanks for the suggestion.

      1. re: cmm3

        i think i know what you mean. the kind that makes you cough when you use it, right? i had the best olive oil when i visited italy several years ago. more recently, my friends lugged bottles back from palermo. the oil was outstanding. it's difficult to find a good one here. i found a red and yellow tin of decent, sicilian olive oil in fairway a few weeks ago. i'll post the name tonight when i am home. fairway has several bottles open to taste with bread during the day but none of them thrilled me. i took a chance with the tin and am somewhat satisfied.

        1. re: nativeNYer

          Ah, the memories. I REALLY do not want to go back to Italia (had horrible misfortunes) and am also skeptical of olive oil from Italia (evidently they bottle twice as much as they actually have olives according to my Suisse friend - he said only buy if you know the farmer).

          A tin? As in it is actually in a tin can? I will travel to Brooklyn if necessary; I just want something excellent, without having to pay 200euro to have it shipped here or wait until my next trip to Europe next month.


          1. re: cmm3

            yes, it's in a really cute tin. i'll post the name here (when i arrive home around 7pm) along with several specs from the tin to help you decide whether this will work for you. i'm sure others will also chime in with favorites. you can also do a search on this manhattan board for olive oil. i clearly remember several decent posts on this topic.

            1. re: nativeNYer

              ok, cmm3, here it is. the olive oil i purchased at fairway is partanna. it is in a small 17 oz tin. it is first cold pressed and undecanted ("cloudier and greener, and more herbaceous and pizzicante in flavor". it is produced only once a yr in October and its flavor will become mellower. i don't know much about olive oil aside from the fact that i think i tasted some really good stuff from italy. hope you find something you like.

              1. re: nativeNYer

                Thank you for all your time. I think I'm going to try the other oil first, but if it doesn't work, then I'll try yours. But they do produce it in the right time of year.

                If you go back to Italia, and haven't been to Verona, go! It's an AWESOME place (really the only part of Italia I like). Then go back to Suisse. ; )

                1. re: cmm3

                  you're welcome. please report back on whatever you wind up trying. i am a huge olive oil fan.

    2. I know next to nothing about olive oil, but Formaggio in Essex Market definitely carries some high end stuff (if the prices are any indication). Does this look promising to you?

      Here's a link to the location:

      1. I usually buy the Barbera oil in the large bottle from Fairway. I find it flavorful and appropriate for eating raw and cooked. Apparently, there is a very yummy Mexican olive oil at Fairway but it may not be what you're looking for.

        Did you try Dipalo's on Grand St? They seem to have huge range of Italian olive oils and offer not only tastes but very good information on the oils they sell.

        Olive oil is so delicious. : )


        7 Replies
        1. re: JeremyEG

          I second the Barbera Sicilian, try it if you go to Fairway. They always have a bottle opened for tasting (Brooklyn). So many times I wanted to get away from it and tested the others over and over again but none beat Barbera. Huge favorite.

          1. re: RedVelvet

            Thanks for the suggestions. Can somebody tell me how to get there from the UWS or give me the exact address?


          2. re: JeremyEG

            Scratch the need for directions; didn't know they were on the UWS (I don't stray far from my building). Anyways, is this the bottle you were referring to?

            Looks good!

            1. re: JeremyEG

              I love the Barbera too. It's got a great peppery taste. We use it for finishing and dipping and such. But we use Fairway's regular olive oil for cooking, which I think is quite good (and a great price too).

              For the OP -- Fairway has their own line of a bunch of different olive oils. At the original store (74th & Bway) (don't know about the others) they usually have a bunch of them out with bread for tasting. Here is the product page for the Barbera Sicilian that I like: .

              1. re: LNG212

                Link didn't work for me, but I'll go to that location and buy some.

                Any oils with a salt taste rather than pepper. Do you use the olive oil with any type of dish when you finish [sic] a dish?

                1. re: cmm3

                  Sorry 'bout that. It worked for me before but now isn't.

                  We like the peppery olive oil with most things. But that's our taste. If you are looking for a specific flavor profile to go with certain foods, then I'd say to go to the store and taste whatever is out for tasting. Maybe your taste will prefer one of the other different types. I should do that too because I wanted to find a mildly citrus-y one.

                  We just like the basic olive oil for cooking because we think the flavor is good, mild, a bit fruity and it's a great price for everyday use.

                2. re: LNG212

                  I like the Fairway olive oils too. Use them at home for general cooking and they are reasonbly priced.

              2. Frankie's 457 Spuntino's olive oil is available at various locations around town. I think they are now around $25 a liter. Nice and fruity when I tried it. Check this link:


                DiPalo's is quite knowledgable about their products and has olive oils avaiable for tasting if you ask them.

                Trader Joe's also has a decent Sicilian oil at $6 or $7 per 500ml.

                1. have you tried stonehouse olive oil. they're from CA and have a store near south Street Seaport