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Mar 9, 2011 11:41 AM

Good Olive Oil?

Any suggestions on where to find some good olive oil in the city?

A good oil should have not only flavor, but also aroma, as well as a little bit of acidic "bite". None of the big brand names (Pompeii, Berio, Colivita, etc.) have much.



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  1. Fox & Obel would be an obvious place to try. You could also try an Italian market such as Panozzo's. I don't know what brands they sell at Whole Foods or Trader Joe's, but you could check there as well.

    I know you asked about places in the city, but there are also some good ones for olive oil just outside the city, such as Caputo Cheese Market (Melrose Park, Lake Forest), Foodstuffs (Evanston, Glenview, Glencoe, Lake Forest), and Marketplace on Oakton (Skokie).

    1. I also like the olive oils at Old Town Oil.

      Old Town Oil
      1520 N Wells St, Chicago, IL 60610

      1 Reply
      1. re: ms. mika

        I have to agree with Mika. Great olive oil. They are about a dozen oils that you can sample.

      2. City Olive on Clark St. in Andersonville might also be a good place to check out.

        1. Depending where you reside, it shouldn't be necessary to travel a long way to find a good selection. Convito Cafe and Market, on Sheridan in Wilmette, which used to be called Convito Italiano, carries the best Italian oils.

          Fox & Obel has an extensive selection of high end Italian, Greek, Spanish, and Provencal oils, and a few from California.

          Much depends on your preferences. I greatly enjoy the olive oil served with the delicious rosemary focaccia at Coco Pazzo Cafe. It's called Monini. I have found this oil only at Caputo's Market in Elmwood Park. They stock Monini Fruttato and Monini Originale. Fruttato is of course fruity, grassy, and full-bodied, delicious, to my taste, for about $12 per liter, Originale is about $10, and a bit softer, but nice. Both are a terrific bargain.

          Caputo's also stocks many oils in 3 liter cans, including their house oil, but they don't seem to stock oils at the very highest end, like Castello di Ama, Capezzana, Laudemio, Lungarotti, Marfuga, and others . Fox has some of those, Williams-Sonoma carries half a dozen at the high end, and Whole Foods surely has a few.

          If he's still there, a man named Al Cirillo, a professor at Northwestern, is also affiliated with Convito and knows a great deal about oils. He sold me a bottle of Capezzana years ago, 3/4 liter for $26, but prices are higher now. He said, "You'll think this is a gyp, or you'll become addicted." I laughed, bought the oil, and thought it was from heaven. Any question anyone has about olive oil, he can answer.

          All of that said, I would avoid Jewel and Dominick's, and also, Trader Joe's seems to limit their inventory to the lowest price-point choices.

          Coco Pazzo Cafe
          636 N St Clair, Chicago, IL 60611

          Convito Cafe and Market
          1515 Sheridan Rd, Wilmette, IL 60091

          2 Replies
          1. re: Greg in Chicago

            I would start with Trader Joe's. For $7.99 you can get their Santini EVOO 32oz it is the green bottle with the poor spout included. TJs also has a Kalamata Extra Virgin Olive Oil I want to try next.

            There are all kinds of Olive Oil threads here on CH including:

            1. re: Greg in Chicago

              >> I have found this oil only at Caputo's Market in Elmwood Park.

              Note that Angelo Caputo's in Elmwood Park and other towns ( ) is not the same thing as Caputo Cheese Market in Elmwood Park and Lake Forest ( ). And both have quite a selection of olive oils.

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