Anyway, we were lucky to have them visit us here in Boston a few weeks ago, and one of our activities was a trip to the Boston Olive Oil Company on Newbury Street. Amy and Zach had been to similar shops before and suggested we go in and try different olive oil and balsamic combinations. Never one to turn down any sort of fatty snack, I happily obliged!
The little shop on Newbury is filled with rows of gleaming stainless steel containers that hold gallons of unfiltered and settled olive oils and traditional Modena balsamic vinegars, all infused with a variety of flavors. When you enter the store, you're invited to sample as you'd like after reading the tasting policy (which basically says to taste as much as you want if you're going to buy something, and to limit your tastes if you're not going to purchase anything so they can afford to continue to offer tastes.) If you do decide to purchase, they bottle your choice right in front of you.
We tried some great flavors, like a dark chocolate balsamic vinegar (would be amazing on vanilla ice cream, I bet), and my favorite was dipping a piece of soft bread into a combo of mushroom olive oil with fig balsamic. That would be an excellent mix to put on a salad, or as a sauce on a mushroom pizza. Overall the shop was very cool and unique, and I think olive oil and vinegar sets would make a great gift.
One of the more unique flavors I saw was a blood orange olive oil. In the shop, they had a recipe for a flourless chocolate and blood orange olive oil cake made with this oil and I immediately thought of those orange chocolate balls people give out at Christmas. I am not a huge fan of the blood orange flavor, so I didn't purchase the bottle, but wanted to share the recipe as it was so unique.
Enjoy, and have a great weekend, sweets!