Olives are great. I love to eat them. Manzanillas from Spain? You bet! Greek Kalamatas? Absolutely! A tin can of sliced black olives? Wouldn’t turn my nose up at it! If we’re out at a bar enjoying martinis together and you go to the restroom, you will come back to a glass sans olives. Sorry about that!
Olives, to me, are like condiments. Just like you can never have too many dijon mustards or fruity jams or chili crisps there is no such thing as too many olives in the fridge.
But if you have to choose just one variety, there’s an objectively correct answer: Sicilian Castelvetranos are the best olive. They’re salty, but not too salty. The texture? Pleasantly firm. The color? A striking bright green.
How do you select the optimal castelvetranos? Great question. First, visit the fanciest grocery store in your town. For me, that’s a Whole Foods in Midtown Atlanta.
See those beauties in the jar? Not so fast! Keep walking. You’re bound for the olive bar. After all, this is an important purchase—you want to see the merchandise up close before committing.
Avoid the olives with any dents or bruises. Also, you want the ones with pits. Otherwise the risk is too high that they’ll be mushy—the worst possible trait for an olive. Pick each one with care, pay $17 for a handful of them, and enjoy your snack.
The Finer Things is an unsolicited recommendations series brought to you by Tip Top’s team and friends. We believe everyone deserves a $17 snack once in a while. Maybe more than once in a while, tbh.