Shopping at Trader Joe's the other day I was not surprised to discover that they, too, have an unfiltered olive oil, which they tiitle their "First Lady Reserve" for some reason. Perhaps that's a First Lady on the label. At first glance it's certainly attractive enough; there's a good deal of sediment visible in the bottom of the bottle, and at $5.99 for 500ml it's less than half the price of the Alessi at $9.95 for 375ml. While TJ's prepared foods have seldom impressed me, their raw ingredients and condiments often seem to be a good value. I bought a bottle.
So how is it? Well, it's a decent oil, but when compared to the Alessi, it falls flat on its face. There's absolutely none of the fresh, grassy flavor and aroma that you look for in a premium oil. In fact, there isn't much there to distinguish it from the cold pressed oil I buy at Costco for $9.95/liter. And so the search continues.