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Apr 24, 2012 12:30 PM

Jarred pickles - what's best?

I sampled some jarred pickles while traveling I Europe, and they were delicious. Haven't found anything close here. I like whole medium sized pickles which are very crisp and crunchy, and somewhat garlicky. If they are available in a spicy variety, that would be a plus. I'd prefer buying a major chain, but am such a pickle fan, I wouldn't mind ordering online.

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  1. I use Nathan's kosher dills as a commercial brand, but the best ever pickle in a jar was a batch I made and canned myself.

    1. Ba-tampte are pretty good for jar pickles. And there are a number of newish picklers that have become available in my area (NYC) like Rick's Picks, Brooklyn Brine and McClure's - my favorite of the three, and they have spicy pickles. If there's a Whole Foods (or similar) near you, you may be able to find your region's version of same.

      11 Replies
      1. re: small h

        Have seen McClure's and Ba-tampte, but have never tried. Will do!

        1. re: josephnl

          And I would be remiss not to mention my homeboys, the Pickle Guys. I've only had them from the barrel (they are awesome), so I don't know how they are jarred & shipped. Can you tell I think about pickles a lot? I think about pickles a lot. And the ones I make myself are damn fine as well.

          1. re: small h

            Interesting! A $21.00 gallon of sour pickles will cost $44.62 to ship to CA... total $65.62. :o[[[[

            1. re: Midlife

              Sure, but per pickle, that's only like...yeah, it's ridiculous. Maybe someday there will be planes that run on solar energy, and then the shipping costs will drop.

        2. re: small h

          +1 Ba-tempte makes a garlic dill, but they are hard to find.
          Go to almost any farmers market and you will most likely find a pickle stand.

          I find myself ordering the honey mustard, horseradish and red flannels from here:

          they aint cheap, but wow are they yummy!

          1. re: AdamD

            +1 Ba-Tempte Garlic Dill pickles. Equivalent to Full Sour in some places. The Garlic Dills are harder to find.

            I do not recommend half-sour pickles of any brand.

            1. re: Steve

              Ba-Tampte half-sours can be good, if they're really fresh. Check the color - they should look like fresh cucumbers, if they're at all pickled-looking they've been on the shelf too long. But even at their best they don't compare to the ones I get from the open vat at the local Russian store.

          2. re: small h

            +1 for Ba-tampte. I buy the half-sours, then let it sit in the fridge for a few months and they get nice and sour.

            1. re: small h

              NYC is pickle heaven -- I'm sooooo jealous. Do they still sell pickles out of the barrels on the street in the LES?

              1. re: CindyJ

                You may be thinking of Guss' on Orchard, which did have barrels out on the street. They decamped to Brooklyn a couple of years ago, and I'm not sure what the setup is out there. The Pickle Guys have lots of barrels (check their website for photos) inside the shop. Even the Whole Foods on 2nd Ave. got in on the act last September:

                1. re: small h

                  Right! It IS Guss' I was thinking of. In fact, a few years back we spent a morning on a walking tour in the LES, then, in the afternoon, saw a play called "A Stoop on Orchard Street." During the play's intermission, they were passing out Guss' pickles in the lobby.

            2. Give Mrs. Wages pickling mix. They make a kosher dill pickle can add garlic and hot peppers to your liking. It's super easy to make and tasty. And as much as good brands of jarred pickles can cost, this is an economical a alternative. You just need a glass gallon jug, some free time and to resist the urge to plunge your hand into the jar and always use a fork.

              1. Costco has carried Carnegie Deli dills in some stores here in SoCal. My standard is New York deli older dills, so they are really the best we've found at retail.

                1. Discovered "Wickles" at, believe it or not, Cracker Barrel's store--spicy good pickles. Later also saw them at World Market. I'm a convert.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: pine time

                    I didn't think about Wickles. Soooo good.

                    1. re: suzigirl

                      I can get WIckles at my Walmart - they are very good.

                    2. re: pine time

                      Wickles also makes some kick-ass relish.

                      I love the Chow Chow from Cracker Barrel.

                      1. re: pine time

                        You can pick up wickles here in 'Bama about anywhere but they were first made here. I like the sweet/spicy crunch of them sometimes but they're chips and no substitute for a good half sour.

                        I think the Bubbies are kinda lame.