I recently had the pleasure of visiting Cambria, California for the day. While I was visiting I was able to explore the town and after a recommendation to check out West Village I stumbled upon Montello Fine Foods on Main Street (which is owned by Lorraine Montello) after seeing a sign outside that said “olive oil and balsamic vinegar tasting today.” After going inside I was immediately greeted by Chuck (who is one of the nicest people you will meet) who told me that I was welcome to taste as many of the olive oil and balsamic vinegar that I wanted to using bread or a small tasting cup. Due to the fact that I am gluten free I used the tasting cup for both the olive oil and the balsamic vinegar, which allowed me to fully taste the notes of both. After tasting all of the olive oils and the balsamic vinegars I was pleased to find that I thoroughly enjoyed all of them. Unlike other companies, Montello Fine Foods olive oils and balsamic vinegars have no additives, preservatives, or chemicals. I found that all of the olive oils were smooth, fruity, and flavorful, while the balsamic was sweet, thick, and was not too acidic unlike many store bought balsamic vinegars. I was also very impressed with the quality and pricing of all of the products. Montello Fine Foods also has herbs, spices, olives, pastas, sea salts, and beauty products (Olivella). I was lucky enough to discover them and will definitely be back. I could tell in my short time in the shop that Lorraine and Chuck are not only very knowledgeable, but are dedicated to making high quality products. I highly recommend picking up any of their products for gifts.
Although I enjoyed all of Montello Fine Foods, a few of my favorites were the strawberry balsamic vinegar, peach balsamic vinegar, garlic olive oil, basil olive oil, and the smoked olive oil. Since I enjoyed the garlic olive oil so much I decided to make a recipe using it. After reflecting I was drawn to the garlic olive oil and thought that it would work well in a number of dishes that I already make, along with new recipes that I will test out and develop in the future as well. I decided that I wanted to make something that was unique with the garlic oil in order to really showcase the smooth and fruity quality, while still complimenting its garlic notes as well. I ended up making Italian Parmesan Garlic Pinwheels and was very pleased with the results that I got using the olive oil in cooking as well.