The Olive Reckoning

Okay so I’ve just finished my olive search, find, and tasting. Come to find out, the grocery store up the road has an impressive selection of Mediterranean cuisine. Okay, cuisine might be an overstatement, mostly it was just an olive bar with some red peppers, tomatoes, and something that should be illegal called Bocconini.

The results are as follows:

Garlic Stuffed- This was a large green olive stuffed with garlic (duh), grown in the northern regiImage and video hosting by TinyPicon of Greece. It had a very firm texture. After tasting, I was immediately greeted with an ocean wave of salt. I’m sure if a cow ate one of these olives it would immediately turn into beef jerky.Β  While the smell reminded me of the concentrated scent of every YMCA locker room in the Northwest, it didn’t taste as half as bad. Rating: 2 olives out of 5.

Stuffed Green Mamouth- ah yes, the love of the martini…lover. Think of the speared olive resting in the delicate martini glass of a James Bond girl. A large green olive with a sweet, meaty, pimento (red thingy that pokes out). I’ve decided that from now I will call the pimento the “Olive prairie dog”, because most people don’t know what pimento means. It was pretty much the same as the garlic olive; salty, green, big, and terrible. I wouldn’t recommend eating this olive before or during a first date. Rating: 2 olives out of 5.

Calabrese Style- a spicy styled olive, its heat derived from a chili marinade. This one had a “pit” in it. Now, I’d like to talk to the Senior Marketing Manager of Olives Worldwide and tell him that they shouldn’t have named the “seed” a “pit”. A pit, in my mind, is a trap that is deep and dark; a pit is something to apply deodorant to; a pit is not something I want to encounter while tasting food. This olive was like biting into a block of salt only to find an acorn in the middle. If the goal of this olive was to hide the spicy flavor with a metric ton of sodium, they were spot on. Rating: 1 olive out of 5

Kalamata – I saved the Kalamata for last because the first three were all green in color; which in my mind, olives should look like. However, the Kalamata is deep purple, which in my mind, olives shouldn’t look like. It had a much softer texture than the previous, and the taste was surprisingly the best of the 4 varieties I tried. Rating: 3 olives out of 5

My overall conclusion is that I can’t imagine where these odd flavors would fit into my diet and somehow add to the enjoyment of my food consumption. I’ll leave the olives to cultured folk for now.

13 thoughts on “The Olive Reckoning

  • never – EVER – have I been more entertained reading about olives. That is until I got a mental picture of you sitting down at your kitchen table taste testing all of the olives and writing notes down on your little notebook that you would later turn into this blog. All of that to say… I am still laughing. Well done.

  • I just want to go on record as stating that I miss Bloom. If I bought olives at Price Chopper they would probably kill me, and if I bought them at Whole Foods I would go into debt. (Although I admit, that’s not too hard right now.) I appreciate you keeping me from both of those disasters with your informative blog post.

  • They should replace the “Price” in Price Chopper with “Health”.

    I’m glad you enjoyed it. I’m sure you could taste the olives.

  • i think we should do this thing again when im back- i really liked the bloom olives- although i have to say- i dont like the garlic one and i dont like the black ones. i totally agree that olives are supposed to look green- although in spain i tasted a kind that was dark brownish and really strong in taste (definitely not my thing, but it was okay…). Concerning ALDI- Aldi in germany has almost nothing to do with Aldi in US – much better here. πŸ™‚ they have olives from spain/greece (seasonal). cant get you the right olives but maybe (only maybe) some chocolate…. maybe i find the olive kinda one and the problem is solved hehehehe…. πŸ˜€

  • Jen –

    That would defintely be the strangest thing I’ve ever done. When I announced to my wife that I was conducting an olive taste test in the kitchen, I was greeted with an incredulous look and smile that said, “Oh dear…”. What might be more entertaining to you is that I had buffalo chicken strips with ranch and a glass of water to chase down anything that might “get out of hand”.

  • Ok, so it sounds like your olive odessy isnt over. Although entertaining and I’m sure delicious, your story/experience did not (as far as I can tell) include an actual natural/unprocessed olive. All of the above olives were added to and processed in some way. I want to know what you rate an olive that gets picked straight off the tree. I don’t think Paul knew what pimento was, either.

  • I love Morgan’s “Oh dear…” face in response to your crazy antics. You guys always make me laugh. And thank the Lord for buffalo chicken strips, or you might have been tasting salty olives for the next few days. I giggled the whole time was reading this post, and wondering what faces Kiah would have made if you had tried to let him ‘help daddy with his test’. try that next time!

  • I know the face. It’s the same face he made when I gave him lemons and a dill pickle. First he scrunches up his face, looks at me like “What did I do to deserve this?”, shudders a few times before letting whatever was in his mouth be a carried out by a river of drool and then run down into his lap.

  • πŸ™‚ ……I am with Jenn…. this was fun to read….. laughing about the way you talk, like in Bolivia!!! laughing is so healthy!!!!!!!
    well, Kalamata olives are good!! did you also try the simle black ones. I think they might be the best for the beginning….. not as strong….
    send greetings from me to Morgan. blessings from Jerusalem.

  • You still have not tasted some of the more unique varieties of olives. May I suggest an afternoon at Dean & Deluca where you can just knosh on lots of samples and never buy anything. By the way, you should be a comic food critic!! As to what to eat olives with; try some good goat cheese or some other kind of sharp cheese with a nice crusty baguette and some good olive oil (Yum, Yum). They are also good in salads and on pizza. Ok, I’m hungry πŸ™‚

  • “What might be more entertaining to you is that I had buffalo chicken strips with ranch and a glass of water to chase down anything that might β€œget out of hand”. ” — oh my gosh, i can’t stop laughing!!!!

  • i like black olives, a lot. i think you said this in an earlier post, but they probably aren’t really black until they are dyed right? anyway, but green = gross. i’m glad to know now what exactly all the fancy ones taste like without having to travel the path of tasting myself. now as for olive oil, me likey.

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