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Buying truffles in Seattle (the tuber, not chocolate)

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  • robca Jan 10, 2010 11:47 AM
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Any good place to buy fresh truffles in Seattle/Eastside? Ideally fresh Oregon truffles: I'd rather buy local than imported, even if the taste is slightly different.

Thanks in advance, Rob

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  1. From what I understand, the truffles for this year are about done, but I may be mistaken. But, FWIW, I've never had any truffles in Oregon that are really worth seeking out, I started buying them through the mail 15 years ago, they were pretty worthless then. I don't think they've gotten much better...it's not so much that the flavor is different, but that it is nearly nonexistent. I'm sure there are some on occasion that are more pungent, but most I've bought are pretty flavorless...though one day I did smell some at the Portland Farmers' Mkt that at least had some aroma, but I didn't spring for them for whatever reason.

    But what do I know? (I've been to the Truffle Fair in Alba, have eaten summer and winter truffles all up and down Italy. The blacks of Tuscany in the summer are far better than anything in Oregon, and the Alba whites???? Fainting just thinking about smelling them from a distance of 25-50 feet during the Fair, farmers' jacket pockets being stuffed with them wrapped in old newspaper....) Find a reliable truffle cream or oil from Italy or France and use that, you'll get closer to the true experience then the local stuff.

    2 Replies
    1. re: sambamaster

      They had some at the Morgan Thriftway several weeks back but I have not seen any lately.

      1. re: sambamaster

        Yes taste is different (I'm Italian, after all, I'm wired to prefer those :-), but I had decent Oregon truffles. The trick, so I read, is to let them age appropriately, and that's rarely done by sellers (unlike the ones selling Alba whites or Perigord blacks)...

        And I know you can find imported truffle products at La Buona Tavola Cafe in the Pike Place Market, but I'm still hoping to find a local source of properly aged truffles... Will keep looking, I guess, and lower my expectations :-), and definitely try Sosio's (per Howard's suggestion). Thanks for the additional info

      2. sosio's produce in pike place market - the home of the 'o my god' peaches - has oregon truffles throughout their season

        1. I bought an Oregon one at the Whole Foods in Interbay last weekend. I was pretty much tasteless to be honest. I'll save up my money for the real thing in the future.

          1. Foraged and Found at the Ballard Farmer's Market has had them in years past, but I haven't checked lately.
            La Spiga has white truffles from Alba right now.

            3 Replies
            1. re: christy319

              In general, Foraged and Found has black truffles this time of year. But get to Ballard or U-District farmers market early.

              1. re: patriciajane

                I believe they also have some frozen ones available if you ask (maybe in advance? I'm not sure)

              2. re: christy319

                The Caviar House has fresh truffles in season. They are not Oregon truffles.

              3. OK you Seattle truffle hounds. Listen up. Get in your car at 6 am this Saturday and head south down I-5 to the Salem Public Market http://salempublicmarket.com . Go see my man Rex, the Oregon truffle king. He usually has Oregon black truffles for $10/oz. and whites for $7/oz. Hurry while gas is still under $3 a gallon. While you're in town you can have a late breakfast at the Off Center Cafe or the Word of Mouth Bistro (yelp it). For Oregon truffles, you need to go to the source.

                1. Hello, I can send you some local truffles in exchange for you telling me if they are good enough to sell.
                  mimi

                   
                  1 Reply
                  1. re: mimijoy

                    Tempting, very tempting :-)

                    Can you please send me more info? please use the same alias I use on this site, @email.com to send email (I'm worried about spam, hence the puzzle :-)

                  2. The Salem Public Market in Salem is still a great source for all types of edible fungi. Rex is gone but he has been replaced by the good folks from the Mushroomery near Lebanon, Oregon. I picked up these two beauties for $5 each yesterday. Today they went into a delicious potato gratin and a roast chicken. Yum. I'd be curious to know how these prices compare to Portland and Seattle prices. If you have ever hunted for black truffles, $5 is not too much to pay. They are hard to find, so I'm happy to be able to buy them at this price. The Mushroomery also had white truffles and a nice variety of wild mushrooms (chanterelles, hedgehogs, fried chicken mushrooms and a couple others).

                     
                    1. At the Ballard Sunday Farmers market there is a guy selling fresh OR truffles

                      1. From reading this, it sounds like another one of those mushroom products that simply refuses to be sold or mass-marketed. Oregon truffles that don't taste like anything sound like Iowa morels that lose their taste within an hour of being picked but if you get to them in time they're wonderfull. Oddly, the same problem exists with Arkansas psylocybe mushrooms which have successfully resisted all attempts at marketing them as a product. (in that case, a hallucinogenic drug)
                        Must have something to do with the whole mushroom family! We won't be sold! (I'm smiling)

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: PeteSeattle

                          I have to stand up for the quality of Oregon black truffles. If you got some that "don't taste like anything" it is because they were picked too early or they weren't quite ripe when you bought them. I bought two nice black truffles today at the Salem Public Market near where I live in Salem, Oregon. The vendor is a nice lady from near Lebanon, OR, who owns a business called The Mushroomery that sells wild and cultivated fungi. She had Oregon blacks and whites today. I bought the blacks for $13/oz. so two of them just a bit smaller than a golf ball cost $16. That's a good deal. She helped me pick two that will reach their peak in a couple days. You Seattle hounds might want to give her a call and see if she would ship some truffles your way. Here is the contact info: http://www.manta.com/c/mttytw9/the-mu.... I'm sure she would not sell you truffles that don't taste like anything.

                        2. How much would you be willing to pay for them? and how much would you actually want?