Who would’ve ever thought that mixing fruit infused balsamic vinegar and vanilla ice cream would be such a treat?! The little note on this sign totally intrigued me to the point I just had to find out!
Last week while stepping out for a lunch date, Audley and I discovered the neatest little shop in downtown Spartanburg, “Olive & Then Some.”
While we initially headed out for sushi, we spent so much time exploring this little shop on Magnolia, that we ended up rushing to eat salads from Jason’s Deli instead!
Owned and operated by Sandy Burn, Olive and Then Some is a fairly new and different twist to Spartanburg’s small downtown district that has been in the midst of revitalization for the two and a half years we have lived here. Several new restaurants and shops have opened that are making the downtown area just a little more appealing. Audley and I have gotten to where we enjoy going downtown and checking out some of the places.
This unique shop offers a selection of over 50 varieties of olive oils imported from all over the world as well as a few gourmet oils (like a delicate truffle oil and a rich walnut oil), and wonderful range of balsamic vinegar produced in Italy & Spain.
With such an array of olive oils from around the world, they keep a very fresh as well as seasonal supply on hand for enhancing numerous dishes in your kitchen.
The set-up is simple; a tasting bar where you can sample the oils using french bread chunks (actually VERY good).
Each oil and vinegar is labeled and also offers suggestions on how you can use it.
The day we visited, the owners had used the Blood Orange infused olive oil to make brownies……
I love the taste-first concept of purchasing items to prepare food with in my kitchen.
Audley and I each sampled several flavors of olive oils. We have different tastes, so he chose the bolder and spicier flavors while I stuck to the mild and delicate flavors.
We saved the balsamic vinegar tasting until the end (a wonderful way to cleanse your palette) and that is where we discovered the wonderful combination of balsamic with vanilla ice cream!
Very simply, a Balsamic Sundae is Vanilla Bean Ice Cream, drizzled with a dab of balsamic vinegar. It’s that simple and absolutely ah-mazing!!
Audley tried more flavors than I did, from peach to blackberry to pomegranate. Me?
I couldn’t seem to tear myself away from the fabulous Strawberry balsamic.
In fact I was so attached to it that I had to purchase my own bottle.
We also purchased a mushroom and sage infused olive oil (which is absolutely divine over roasted red potatoes) and a peach white balsamic vinegar (which is delicious on a spinach salad).
Each jar of oil or vinegar is bottled and sealed at the store. You can wash and return your bottles for a discount on your next purchase…. Don’t you love to recycle?
Olive & Then Some also carries a wonderful selection of culinary as well as locally themed gifts. It was a perfect place to pick up a wedding gift for a shower over the weekend.
I know Spartanburg is not a premiere vacation destination, but if you are passing through between Atlanta and Charlotte sometime, think of taking a little detour and checking out our growing downtown.
With a Lily Pulitzer store, a small book cafe, Pure Barre (wonderful exercise classes), historic and beautiful Morgan Square, several local restaurants (including the amazing sushi from Miyako) and a wine bar as well a few brewery there is a little something for everyone to explore!