California is already pretty well known for our great wines – but did you know that olive oil is also produced here? My favourite producer has a shop in the Ferry Building, and I highly recommend it as a source of “what to bring home” from San Francisco, or as another great gift idea for friends and family.
Stonehouse is one of the several producers of high quality olive oil grown in California. For me, the value of a good olive oil is highly appreciated, and Stonehouse exceeds my standards. When the timing is right, you can get the still cloudy Estate Blend, or, if the growing conditions were good that year – the pure Arbequina varietal. They recommend changing the bottle after the cloudiness settles, but it rarely lasts that long. New oils generally come out early in the year….so plan accordingly.
Part of my duty when visiting family is to collect the old bottles and get them refilled (Stonehouse offers a discount for reusing old bottles). I really don’t mind – it gives me another chance to sample the oils and see what’s new or in season. In addition to several varieties of olive oil, they also offer infused versions (basil, Persian lime), vinegars, and other select condiments. Olive oil from California falls into my category of “real” souvenirs from San Francisco – they will wrap bottles to travel, so be sure to take some home.