Jupiter has become the specialty olive oil center of the county with the opening of the The Olive Oil Exchange. It's a European-elegant space of wood and marble with a special flavor: all things olive, plus balsamic vinegars, serving pieces, chocolates, crackers, pastas and gift items.
There are oils from places you’d expect, like California and Spain, but also from some surprising regions, like Australia, Chile and Peru. And these olive oils are ultra-premium certified by the AOCS (American Oil Chemists’ Society), which lab-tests for all the proper components: antioxidant, fatty acid composition and chemical breakdown.
Moss-green bottles line the shelves, waiting to be filled from the stainless-steel tanks. But before you fill, you taste. Take the proffered bowl of bread cubes at the counter, wander, pour a bit and dip. If you thought olive oil was all just the same green and pretty fluid, you are in for a surprise. The same flavor profiles and nuances you find in wine and chocolate, you will also find in these oils, from a peppery Hojiblanca from Australia to some of the inspired infused blends (mushroom and sage, spicy harissa) and the must-have roasted sesame oil.
Then there is another section of vinegars and balsamic vinegars. Most people know this as one-half of a good vinaigrette, but again, the Exchange, takes this acid to a completely altered state. Champagne wine vinegar and sherry vinegars you can drink. Balsamics flavored with fig, cherry, chocolate, maple, black currant and pears. And have you ever tried white balsamic vinegar? Lighter, fresher, yet it still has the acidic zing, offered here in flavors of apricot, peach, mango, coconut and lemon.
If you cannot decide on one item, there are small tasting bottle packs and custom gift baskets. And soon to come: cooking demonstrations and a wine room. Because who can live on oil and vinegar alone?
The Olive Oil Exchange, 711 W. Indiantown Road (Jupiter Town Center Plaza), Jupiter, FL. Phone (561) 203-2738(561) 203-2738. Hours: Monday through Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Closed Sundays.
Fratello Sole, the wonderful farmer’s market stand at the Palm Beach Gardens Sunday greenmarket, has started a cheese club. For $45 per month, plus $13 for shipping and handling, you can get three half-pound selections of artisan and premium cheeses. Each month will offer several choices. You can see what’s available at www.floridacheeseclub.com or email the company at firstname.lastname@example.org for more.