Athenos extra virgin olive oil is a very good, very affordable, smooth and clean tasting oil with not a trace of bitterness. I use it for cooking everything. It’s good enough to use for salad dressing as well. I do not see it listed on the company website, when I’ve called the company they have repeatedly stated that it is not showing up as having been discontinued however it has pretty much disappeared from supermarket shelves.
Don’t let the “subsidiary of Kraft Foods” fool you, this stuff is good. I am not at all a fan of Athenos cheese or hummus, they’re crap. Athenos olive oil is in a league of its own. I am beyond bummed out. If any industry insiders have any suggestions as to how I can find out the current status I would be profoundly grateful, hoping against hope that they are still producing, perhaps under a different name? http://churnyfoodservice.com/
Blargh. So frustrating when you can no longer find a trusty staple.
I did see Athenos olive oil listed on Amazon Pantry, if that helps at all.
In another direction, I like Trader Joe’s organic extra virgin olive oil as an all-purpose pick. The bottle in my cabinet right now is Spanish.
In the past when we belonged to Costco, I liked their Kirkland Signature brand Italian olive oil. I fear the price may have climbed since my last purchase several years ago. Maybe someone with recent Costco know-how would be able to share an update on it?
Recently the all-purpose oil that has won my affection is from a local Greek specialty store (Sophia’s, for people in the Boston area). They decant the oil into a bottle when you purchase it. Now it’s my go-to.
That’s what I use too - the Costco EVOO. I think it is a little bit pricier the last few years, but it’s a big bottle and I still consider it a good deal, especially for it’s flavor (mild to slightly fruity) and versatility. I use it in marinades, salad dressings, and just about anything. I pick up at least 2 bottles when I need it and can find it.
I have tried their regular olive oil (big jug variety) that I mainly use for sautees, and I picked up a different bottle that wasn’t the classic Tuscan variety that I have mainly used. I haven’t tried that yet, but I’m curious as to how it’s different.
Costco EVOO here too; about once a year they have Tuscan EVOO under the Kirkland brand which is very good also, and just a little more expensive. I usually always pick up a bottle of TJ’s Greek olive oil when shopping there. We buy special olive oils from time to time for dipping or finishing a dish.
You may want to try California Olive Ranch EVOO’s. We used to get it from Costco too when they had a shipment. I don’t see it there anymore unfortunately and it’s somewhat pricey if I run across it at the supermarkets.
Thank you to everyone who has responded thus far. My preference has always been Greek olive oil for everyday use and higher quality Italian brands for finishing. Whole foods has been a great source for the latter over the years. They were always adding brands, needing to make room for them resulted in serious markdowns. When they needed to move stock, the clearance oil discounts could be outrageous. It’s always been a lot easier to find a really good $$$$ EVOO than a reasonable one suitable for everyday use.
I switched from Costco to the Fairway house brand before discovering Athenos. I don’t remember what happened but something changed and the Fairway evoo I used which was available in a manageable sized can was no longer an option. I can not remember if I ever tried TJ’s and Monini Delicato does not seem to be available in the states. I checked again and it appears that Athenos is currently in stock at Prime Pantry, it wasn’t last week I really need to find out what is happening. I appreciate all input and suggestions and everyone taking the time to help me out.
When I first read this thread I wondered if the disease that is killing Italy’s olive trees had crossed over into Greece but, thankfully, I can’t find any articles that support that - so hopefully it was just a stocking issue.
They’ve come out with different varieties, that I haven’t used. I’ve only used this kind (there are two similar bottled brands, and I can’t remember which one to be honest) in the clear green tinted bottle. It’s a got a wonderful olive taste, with slight peppery notes.
Yeah, one needs to be wary of “Product of XYZ” products, which per EU/WTO rules only have to be packed (in their final retail forms) in XYZ rather than actually being produced in XYZ in the ordinary/conversational sense of being grown/manufactured/etc in XYZ. (And that applies to basically everything except the geographically-designated stuff…)
I think I remember that the EU passed additional regs requiring the country of origin for at least some foods (olive oil, milk, and probably others I’m not aware of) to be included somewhere on the label at least (though not necessarily in type as big as the rest of the label verbiage), but I won’t swear to that. And yeah, that sort of thing did eventually spread to other oil-producing countries, but earlier on in the rise of OO’s worldwide popularity at least, Italy was particularly notorious for it, probably because Italian oil was the most highly publicized/popular and commanded higher prices than oils of similar quality from Spain and Greece especially…