The Kingston Olive Oil Company is an intriguing new shop that’s brimming with delicious treats and gourmet creativity. It’s right at home on what I fondly refer to as the “foodie block” downtown – that small stretch of Brock tucked between Wellington and King Street East – where it keeps good company among other established gems like Cooke’s Fine Foods, Le Chien Noir, Atomica, and Oderin Kitchen Supplies.
If you haven’t popped by yet, get on that. As the namesake implies, Kingston Olive Oil Company is a dedicated purveyor of fine olive oils, but it also offers an impressive array of well-aged balsamic vinegars and quality sea salts as well. It first came on the city scene earlier this year as a labor of love for owners Shaun Finucane and Julia Hayoe. The couple was inspired to open Kingston Olive Oil Company by a passion for fine dining and international travel; now they’re able to share the bounties of that taste for la dolce vita with the public.
The best part about the shopping experience at this place is that it’s really much more like an educational experience for your palette. There are dozens and dozens of fresh olive oils and rich balsamics to sample, with plenty of nice Pan Chancho bread on hand for dipping. While you nosh, you can learn more about what you’re trying as you go because each oil and vinegar is accompanied by cards with full flavor profiles, tasting commentary, notes about cold-pressing methods, and tips for recommended use. It’s kind of amazing to behold. Those who already love wine will relish the opportunity to become an amateur olive oil sommelier (though getting certified and becoming a pro is a real thing – who knew?).
Choose from over 50 distinct olive oils and 30 different varieties of balsamic vinegars, which can be purchased in three bottle sizes and range in price from $12-30; custom variety packs and gift boxes featuring five smaller samples are $24. Far away from Kingston but still longing for more great olive oils in your life? Not to worry – just visit the Kingston Olive Oil Company’s online shop. Their website also provides useful information about the health benefits of olive oil and a comprehensive section devoted to pairing guides for all kinds of cuisine.
It is heartening to see an independent small business like this one confidently forge its way in Kingston with high levels of local enthusiasm and support. From the character of the owners’ mission to offer a diverse selection of flavorful oils and share the joy of cooking with the community, to the striking beauty of the store’s restored heritage space and the caliber of its artisan stock imported from fair trade farmers all over the world, Kingston Olive Oil Company has perfected the recipe for success.