Another long-overdue post…. I compared a wide range of Turkish olive oils in this article and promised to write about the olive oil at Eataly (a high-end food Italian market chain, which are currently operating in the US, Japan, Dubai, and Istanbul, and KOREA!) Doesn’t the list say something? Perhaps, only to my sarcastic eye… China will soon follow, I reckon. I’m not a fan of chain stores and didn’t even give this place a second of my thoughts, thinking it as a posh commercial place for well-off-expats and locals. However, having been there on several occasions, it turned out to be quite a good place for foodies. So when I go there, I get three bottles of the BEST olive oil, prosciutto, bread, etc.
The only reason I go there – I don’t go to Macro Centre or Namli Gourme because they are a ripoff – is because it actually has high quality products and because of their philosophy of making products using local ingredients. Especially the mozzarella and prosciutto are to die for and I see people making mozzarella right in front of you!
The pork products are from Italy but very high quality, not mediocre jambon that is sold in many city gourmet stores, and most of all, they are cheaper!
So for now, Eataly remains as a haven for food shopping. I’ve discovered alternative sources for good cheese and olive oil since then.
The only problem I find with this place is that you can’t drink wines bought from their shelves, which doesn’t make sense. I pressed the poor waiters to explain to me “WHY isn’t it allowed?” just to hear the repeated “No, you can’t.” I was particularly disappointed and annoyed because I was with clients who wanted to shout one of the most expensive Amarone wine, worth over €120, but we weren’t allowed, therefore I lost my chance to taste it. I found out later through Mr.O’s classmate that when it was first opened, it was allowed to shop and drink there but they changed the policy after some issues with some Turkish customers who buy, drink and refuse to pay – surprise, surprise!
Anyway, this is the olive oil I’ve been using, which is probably the fruitiest extra olive oil you can find in Turkey. I didn’t look at the Italian olive oil shelves; if you look, you’re tempted so… I’m pretty happy with Olivurla, early harvest(erken hasat) and cold press(soğuk sıkım). With the price of 29TL, compared to 26TL for Nar at Namli Gourmet, I wonder why one isn’t buying more of Olivurla’s products.
There isn’t any other equivalent to this olive oil out there as far as I’ve tasted. So folks, go buy the olive oil from this small producer and don’t let it lose its space to other competitor olive oils. The reason I’m saying this because I saw their products had been pushed to a lower shelf on my last visit. I hope Olivurla stays, though I can order online.
Oh, what a lovely treat! The 3o+month aged prosciutto….oh, mamma mia…. this prosciutto has converted some Turkish people who refuse to eat jambon because of the smell. I’ve actually experienced some unpleasant odor in some ham from other gourmet stores but this one is bonza! That’s why what you eat and how you eat matters. The photos were taken from my previous house, which no longer exists….because of the construction craze going on in Istanbul due to greedy property owners who want to make more units and squeeze people into tiny shoe boxes!
If you’ve read the full article, you must be a foodie. So Please check the event page for my ‘Cheese Gourmand‘ event.