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Good pesto

I’ve run out of the batch of pesto I made last fall, and I’m looking at some long months until I make my next batch.

In the meantime, what’s your recommendations for store-bought perso?

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  1. The President's Choice stuff at least is pretty bad. Suggest you go buy a basil plant and some pine nuts and start whizzing.

    1. The Kirkland brand from Costco is not bad, although it's bit light on the basil and heavy on the cheese.

      1. There's a basil pesto sold in a "pouch" that is quite good; add cheese and other ingredients on your side.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Maximilien

          That would the Le Grand brand of pesto

          1. re: westaust

            Ah yes, I always forget it, and I can't find a good google hint to find it.

        2. Milano carries some more "homemade" looking pesto in the fridge with other pasta sauces.

          1. Thanks, I'll give Le Grand a try and take it from there.

            I'll let you know if I find something great :)

            3 Replies
            1. re: sweettoothMTL

              I have just tried Le Grand pesto, and I must say I'm not a fan. I tried it at a sampling, and had the Garden Pesto and the 4 nuts and cheese. The garden pesto tasted (almost exclusively) of parsley, and the 4 nuts & cheese was really heavy on the cheese - I would never have guessed there were nuts in it.

              Neither tasted of olive oil. If you were planning to use it on pasta, you would have to add a lot of olive oil (and then ruin the texture).

              I think I have seen pesto at Maison du Rôti (made by them). I've never tried it, but their products are usually very good, so it might be worth a shot.

              1. re: alinemramos

                The Le Grand pesto is really a good base to add cheese and nuts.

                1. re: Maximilien

                  I like the Le Grand Garden pesto because it doesn't contain nuts so I can send it off in my kids' school lunches. But tonight we're having pesto from Maison des Pâtes Fraiches which is a very nice one too.

                  For homemade, off season it can be fun to try different pesto recipes like lemon, parsley and walnut pesto.

            2. if you're not gonna make your own Le Grand for sure. run by a really nice couple from Montreal.

              1. How about the Fontaine Santé? Has anyone tried that?

                1. Pastene is the best, imo, as far as brands in all the big groceries go (it's got a yellow label with red lettering).

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: Shattered

                    The Pastene sauce I saw at Loblaws had peanut oil and cashew nuts as first ingrediants, so that turned me off. But I see now the website has a ‘’normal’’ version listed. Don’t know what the other one was about.

                    1. re: sweettoothMTL

                      I haven't a clue what you saw, but it's not the Pastene pesto I've got - or pesto at all.

                      1. re: Shattered

                        Here's a list of ingredients from the Pastene USA web site:

                        "INGREDIENTS: Sweet Fresh Basil, Sun Flower Oil, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Cashew Nuts, Pine Kernals,, Parmesan & Romano Cheese, Garlic, Sea Salt,"

                        So yes to cashew nuts, no to peanut oil.


                        1. re: Shattered

                          There are many variations of the traditional pesto.

                          We are used to see the "genovese" variation. (basil, cheese, pine nuts); but I've seen many different sorts before, here and in Italy.