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San Marzano Tomatoes - any deals in L.A. area?

korndog Apr 12, 2010 07:12 PM

Looking for a few cases of DOP SM's. Anybody know who's blowing 'em out? Can't seem to find them for less than five bucks a can. Having good luck with Cento brand right now, but open to others.

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  1. w
    will47 RE: korndog Apr 12, 2010 08:23 PM

    I don't know their exact prices, but my first inclination would be to call Guidi Marcello in Santa Monica. Their selection of canned tomatoes is here:
    and they do sell by the case.

    Guidi Marcello
    1649 10th St, Santa Monica, CA

    5 Replies
    1. re: will47
      korndog RE: will47 Apr 12, 2010 08:52 PM

      Love that place. Good call, I'll pay him a visit. I'm sure I will at least walk out with a small fortune in pork and fungi.

      1. re: will47
        maudies5 RE: will47 Apr 12, 2010 09:20 PM

        Second recommendation for Guidi Marcello. Also good for reasonably priced olive oil.

        Guidi Marcello
        1649 10th St, Santa Monica, CA

        1. re: maudies5
          will47 RE: maudies5 Apr 12, 2010 09:33 PM

          Yes. A little birdie told us about that one, and their house olive oil is not bad at all for the price.

        2. re: will47
          AAQjr RE: will47 Apr 12, 2010 11:12 PM

          wholesale only?

          1. re: AAQjr
            will47 RE: AAQjr Apr 12, 2010 11:37 PM

            No. It's in an industrial park, and is setup more like a small wholesaler / distributer, but they will sell you stuff retail.

        3. c
          cls RE: korndog Apr 12, 2010 08:48 PM

          I just bought them at Whole Foods for $3.99.

          4 Replies
          1. re: cls
            A5 KOBE RE: cls Apr 13, 2010 10:47 AM

            Whole Foods only carries the "San Marzano" brand tomatoes which are grown in the domestically.

            1. re: A5 KOBE
              Jack Flash RE: A5 KOBE Apr 13, 2010 11:03 AM

              Not true. Whole Foods carries a few different kinds of imported canned tomatoes. At least the branches in Pasadena do. They have Cento, Carmelina and a third brand.

              1. re: Jack Flash
                cls RE: Jack Flash Apr 13, 2010 01:48 PM

                The ones I buy from Whole Foods are imported.

                1. re: cls
                  rednyellow RE: cls May 16, 2010 12:39 PM

                  likewise. Whole foods in weho has a few brands of imported tomatoes.

          2. b
            Burger Boy RE: korndog Apr 12, 2010 11:10 PM

            Around CHristmas or maybe January saw several different brands at Surfas all under $5. I saw some at Monte Carlo and even Trader Joe's, I can not tell you anything about the flavor of TJ's. Good Luck!

            Good Luck Bar
            1514 Hillhurst Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90027

            1. korndog RE: korndog Apr 13, 2010 06:49 AM

              Thank you for your suggestions. I'll check out the WFM brand. I also found Cento for 5 bucks on Amazon Prime. No tax or shipping to my front door makes that a decent deal, but I was hoping for better. I'll report back on Guidi Marcello.

              Guidi Marcello
              1649 10th St, Santa Monica, CA

              1. s
                SeaCook RE: korndog Apr 13, 2010 09:26 AM

                You might also try Roma Market in Pasadena (where I'd get them when I lived out there) or any Claro's ( i shop at the La Habra location now). They've always been welll under $5.00 at both stores.

                1. r
                  redroostersauce RE: korndog Apr 13, 2010 09:42 AM

                  Whole Foods has them for $3.99 and if you get a whole case, they've been known to give a 10% discount. I've done this when purchasing chocolate bars from them.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: redroostersauce
                    sparkareno RE: redroostersauce Apr 13, 2010 09:46 AM

                    Are they DOP? Sometimes I see some on sale at Bristol Farms but I don't think they are the real deal.

                    1. re: sparkareno
                      A5 KOBE RE: sparkareno Apr 13, 2010 10:47 AM

                      They are not.

                    2. re: redroostersauce
                      will47 RE: redroostersauce Apr 13, 2010 10:18 AM

                      Cento has both DOP and non-DOP ones (which IIRC are US grown). I believe Whole Paycheck has the non-DOP Cento ones, as well as DOP certified ones from other brands, but I could be remembering wrong.

                      I actually like the non-DOP Cento brand ones pretty well, but the OP specified DOP.

                      1. re: will47
                        coconutz RE: will47 Apr 18, 2010 08:22 PM

                        I have seen cans of Cento brand imported from Brazil.

                    3. westsidegal RE: korndog Apr 13, 2010 02:28 PM

                      i'm an idiot.
                      what does DOP stand for?

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: westsidegal
                        foodfoodfood RE: westsidegal Apr 13, 2010 03:04 PM

                        I think i's a sort of stamp of approval or authorization certifying the authenticity of the Italian product being sold.


                        1. re: westsidegal
                          Joe Blowe RE: westsidegal Apr 21, 2010 09:18 AM


                        2. y
                          young_chower RE: korndog Apr 13, 2010 10:00 PM

                          I bought a HUGE, industrial size can of San Marzano tomatoes from the bi-monthly sale at Epicure Imports for around $5.50. It was DOP, but it doesn't say DOP because Carmelina doesn't want to pay the fees to certify it DOP (their website does a good job of explaining it:


                          Nevertheless it was an infinitely better price than anything at Whole Foods, etc.

                          1. j
                            Jack Flash RE: korndog Apr 14, 2010 07:25 PM

                            I'm posting to correct some misinformation provided in a couple of places above in this thread about what is stocked at Whole Foods.

                            I perused the tomato shelf at the Arroyo store today. There were four different brands of Italian (i.e., imported from Italy) San Marzano tomatoes. In alphabetical order: Bionaturae, Carmelina, Gia Russa and Rao's. Gia Russa are DOP, for whatever that's worth. I can't recall the prices on all, but I remember that Gia Russa was $4.99 for a 28-oz. can.

                            Hope this info. is helpful.

                            1. OC Mutt RE: korndog Apr 14, 2010 07:54 PM

                              Surfas has a nice selection, at least four different choices and the prices are pretty good.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: OC Mutt
                                mollyomormon RE: OC Mutt Apr 21, 2010 10:25 AM

                                Plus, Surfa's will give 10% off the purchase of a case.

                              2. o
                                outshined RE: korndog Apr 15, 2010 10:29 AM

                                I found them at Gelson's for surprisingly a more reasonable price ($4.50?) than Bay Cities Deli. These would be the Cento San Marzanos grown in Italy. They had the organic ones too for a little more.

                                1. korndog RE: korndog Apr 18, 2010 01:31 PM

                                  Flash: Gelson's has Cento DOP's for 3.69 right now, in case anyone cares.

                                  1. t
                                    TailbackU RE: korndog Apr 20, 2010 11:40 PM

                                    Anyone know what the shelf life is of canned SM tomatos?

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: TailbackU
                                      Joe Blowe RE: TailbackU Apr 21, 2010 09:26 AM

                                      If there is no USE BY date printed on the can, I'd try to use it within a year or so.

                                      Not because of safety concerns, mind you, but simply because the bright flavor of canned tomatoes tend to fade over time...

                                      1. re: Joe Blowe
                                        senzanome RE: Joe Blowe May 15, 2010 10:47 PM

                                        I found several brands of San Marzano DOP tomatoes at Cortina's in Anaheim.
                                        We purchased Baresi brand at $3.89 a can. They have other brands, but this one
                                        has the least sodium content.

                                        The Whole Foods in Tustin has Italian tomatos, but they are not San Marzano.

                                        Claros are priced at over $5.00 a can. So, Cortina's is my new go-to market.

                                        Cortina's Market
                                        2175 W. Orange (at Brookhurst)
                                        Anaheim, CA 92804

                                    2. p
                                      pinpei RE: korndog May 16, 2010 06:58 PM

                                      Was at Bristol Farms (Beverly and Doheny) today. Cento San Marzano DOP from Italy $6.50/can.

                                      1. i
                                        Idlehands RE: korndog Jul 23, 2010 10:55 AM

                                        Another vouch for Guidi Marcello. I got the massive can of Le Valle San Marzano tomatoes for 6.99?

                                        I always have the intention of purchasing certain items hoping not to go over 30.00 when I go there. Fail. I walk out on average spending 100.00...I love this place.

                                        Guidi Marcello
                                        1649 10th St, Santa Monica, CA

                                        1. lapizzamaven RE: korndog Jul 24, 2010 07:41 AM

                                          Just bought a can of Cento DOP San Marzanos at Whole Foods in Westwood for 2/$7.

                                          1. Mr Taster RE: korndog Jul 24, 2010 03:14 PM

                                            Regarding imported vs. domestically grown canned tomatoes...

                                            Apparently there is a regulation that imported must be packed in puree, whereas domestic tomatoes can be packed in puree or juice.

                                            Puree tends to me made from inferior tomatoes, essentially tainting the whole tin. So if you're purchasing DOP San Marzanos, chances are you're much better off buying a high quality tin of domestic tomatoes packed in juice.

                                            Source: Cooks Illustrated canned tomato taste test.

                                            Mr Taster

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