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Feb 26, 2011 12:07 PM

Uzel- Artisanal Turkish olives, olive oil

Before I bought the internet coupon I looked on the internet at what Uzel (974 Danforth) offered and the prices. I knew that the store was pricey, but I bought into the hype of artisanal products etc. I figure, at the worst , I would be paying net the same price and would get better quality.

Everyone can charge what they want . And certainly Uzel's ambience is very nice and he pays big rent in relation to what he has to sell. But in comparison to Marche Istanbul, wow!
Prices seem to be two times, two and a half times and even, (in the case of soap) perhaps four times the prices at Marche Istanbul. As for quality, I would have to taste the olives together and when not irate to decide that some of them are not the same or that I don't like MI's olives better, even though they undoubtedly were not hand picked from the top branches of the tree by the proprietor's family as Uzel claims for his. I thought that Uzel's olive oil also was way overpriced.

But I had aleady bought the coupon and went through with the charade of being pleased.

MI is a large grocer and a branch of the Montreal main store. It is a direct importer from Turkey. The Toronto store has greatly increased the number of items that they carry and it is now a interesting place with a lot of nice things and reasonably priced. It is on Dufferin, north of Lawrence west side.

As for Uzel, I have a fair bit of experience in the Middle-East being a "stupid American tourist ". I didn't think that I would be one in my home town. But you may like the experience. As for me, this coupon is my first loser.


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  1. That's too bad to hear Vinnie. I was thinking about picking up a coupon to try too, but decided against it.

    1. I dropped into Uzel twice when they were at the corner of Pape and Jones. I was completely unimpressed with the olives. One clear memory was of those little plastic tubs of olives all wiith expiry dates that had either passed a few weeks earlier, or coming up in a week or two. That's something I've never encountered before.

      1. What about their Olive Oil? Is it any good?

        1 Reply
        1. re: ultimobailey

          It is a yellow oil. I thought that it was not interesting and that it's greatest virtue was that it was slippery. $25 (!) a litre bottle.

        2. went there today. made a special trip actually. unimpressed. i'll stick to the nut house's olives.

          1. If you're looking for olive oil, I note that Acropolis Organics headquarters are in the St Clair/O'Connor area. Not Turkish, of course, but I think that's not too far from you. I keep meaning to drop in and ask if they'll sell direct to the consumer.