A recent weekend was spent in Boston, celebrating my husband’s birthday. Although Boston is only an hour away from our home, it was quite delightful to have two whole days to explore different venues. One of those venues was Newbury Street, which is home to numerous high-end shops, one of a kind boutiques, and wonderful restaurants. While we enjoyed many different shops for art galleries to designer clothing shops, our favorite was Boston Olive Oil Company.
Entering the store, our eyes were greeted with the site of an island and a wall counter covered with stainless steel tanks filled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Within each of these product lines, there were so many options. The olive oil was available in varietals and fused, and infused flavors. (During our visit we learned that fused oils have the added ingredient, such as orange, pressed at the same time as the olives, which creates the added flavor. Infused oils are made by allowing the immersing the ingredient, such as basil, in the olive oil for a period of time.) Not to be outdone, there were a wide array of balsamic vinegars available with infusions I had never seen before, such as Cinnamon Pear.
In addition to having a wide variety of offerings, Boston Olive Oil Company had knowledgeable and helpful staff at our disposal. Although we could browse as we desired, Patrick and Gail (the owners) generously offered to answer questions and suggest pairings. With their attention and many tastings at our disposal, we gladly accepted their pairing offerings. The first that we tried was Pineapple Balsamic and Garlic Olive Oil. While garlic and pineapple may not seem like natural partners, the taste was amazing- the perfect combination of sweet and savory. The next pairing was Cinnamon Pear Balsamic and Wild Mushroom and Sage Olive Oil. Even though that may sound perplexing, its taste was akin to a Thanksgiving stuffing and was quite tasty.
All of the olive oils are imported seasonally from different locations. As the freshest olive oil is sold at Boston Olive Oil Company, they purchase from locations that are producing at the time of the order. The balsamic vinegars are from Modena, Italy, some of which have aged for eighteen years.
The olive oil and balsamic is bottled at the store, and all are able to be tasted before purchasing. We tasted many of the oils and balsamics. Although it was a difficult decision, the pairing of pineapple and garlic was the winner, and thus we brought a bottle of each home. Of course, with Boston only an hour away, I am sure we will be returning to sample (and buy) more olive oil and balsamic vinegar.