Right at the very tip of Melrose Place is Fig & Olive, a Mediterranean restaurant with quite a fabulous way about them. The Melrose and La Cienega now-staple is an airy and clean restaurant that is always bustling. You’ll notice as you walk in that there is a wall lined with oils and vinegars, spreads and pantry goods: they’re little items that extend F&O’s brand from their West Hollywood space to your place. We swung by yesterday for the first time and picked up one of their very luscious olive oils to try. Their collection is obviously a large brand touchstone.
There are several different types of olive oils sold from F&O. They have the buttery and light kind, the medium and green kind, and the assertive and peppery kind. We went with the latter option getting a Spanish Hojiblanca oil. The bottle and packaging (which you can see at the bottom) illustrates just how sacred this item is. Not only is it nifty to use in your own kitchen or gift, it is the center of their cuisine. Just take a look at their menu: “olive oil” makes thirty four appearances and is even broadcasted at the top with the disclaimer, “each dish is prepared with a selected extra virgin olive oil, served with freshly baked olive oil bread.” They are serious about their olive oil.
Now, I’m not going to attempt to pretend that I have any sort of expertise in olive oil. I know that I like it and I know that I cook with it a lot. I also know that I like to dip fresh bread in it. Grabbing a tiny La Brea Bakery Demi Baguette, I took to the oil. It’s is a golden yellowy green and looks to be a thick Chardonnay. Taking bread to it, it is a very clean and crisp oil. The olive flavor is incredibly strong and has a fruit note that I can’t quite place. (The description says “apple notes” but that isn’t quite it…) Sadly, you don’t really catch the pepper which may be because I mixed pepper in. That said, it is quite assertive in its bright olive flavor.
The oil is pretty great and is certainly very fancy. We’re excited to use it in other ways and, obviously, it’d be great to actually try Fig & Olive to see how their masters employ them. I’m fairly certain this Hojiblanca is going to be drizzled on lots of vegetables and a few pastas. And they will taste more fantastic than usual. You can check out F&O in Melrose Place and can actually order their oils online here.