Monday, November 17, 2008


Sometimes I can agonize for days, weeks, even months over a potential purchase. I've always been a cautious spender, but sometimes, especially when traveling, I've made mistakes. Sometimes I've bought things I later regretted, or realized were foolish. Other times I'd get back home and wish I'd bought a particular thing and wondered why oh why I'd hesitated!

When we first started looking at olive oil containers for our friend Damon I honestly had no wish to have one for myself. The first one we saw was waayyy too large, but later in Trevi, during the frantoi aperti celebration we saw a simple large glass bottle that would hold about 2 liters of oil. It had a spigot on the front and I thought "hmmmm, maybe I could use something like that." But the moment passed.

Later at one the the olive mills we saw a nice ceramic urn complete with iron stand and a small pitcher on a matching place to catch any drips. I took a picture of it for Damon and sent it to him. I liked this urn better than the first, not only because it was a little smaller, but also because the design was a little simpler. I'm not one for fussy designs, so this simple white urn with olives seemed perfect.

One of the reasons we'd dismissed the idea of buying even the smaller olive oil dispensers was because we didn't have any place to keep it. Yes, we have loads of counter space, but because of it's design, anything with a spigot would have to sit at the edge of the counter so you could easily fill a container for the table. Yes, I know, you could push it to the back of the counter, but I just don't believe in tempting fate with all the back and forth movement....sooner or later something bad was bound to happen!

And then one day as I walked into the pantry I realized that we might be able to sit the container on top of the wine rack. It's still easily accessible but has little chance of getting bumped. Although it wouldn't be in the main part of the kitchen, it would still be very much on display, especially when I'm cooking, so I'd get to enjoy looking at it as well as using it.

I found out the olive mill had simply had this piece on display for the maker, SPIGARELLI. Their website was in both Italian and English, so I wrote to them asking for information about ordering the set. I received a reply from their American distributor, ABBIAMO TUTTO. I exchanged several emails with the president of the company, Donna Marie Territo, who was very helpful. We put our Canadian friends in touch with her since this is the best way for them to order the container, but for us in Umbria, we could just go right to the source!

Because the small pitcher was cracked, I wondered if the GAUDENZI
frantoio might sell me just the urn and the stand. The problem with buying the urn directly from SPIGARELLI was that we'd have to have the stand made separately. Lo and behold, yes! Gaudenzi would sell us the complete set, cracked pitcher and all, for the same price as the urn alone. Sold!

And so the other day when we revisited Trevi and Pigge with our Canadian friends we bought the olive oil container and brought it home! I'm still a little scared to wash it, and think I might put it in the bathtub where I can use the handheld sprayer to rinse it thoroughly. I had hoped to be able to salvage the pitcher but it has a hairline crack down the side. Maybe I'll just buy a plain white pitcher, but for now I don't have the room for the pitcher and plate underneath the spigot anyway, so I'll worry about that later.

And here it is......what do you think??? I'm so glad we bought it, and I'm sure this is one purchase I'll never regret!

Ceramic Olive Oil container

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At 11/17/2008 06:09:00 AM , Anonymous Judith in Umbria said...

I think that's pretty darn fancy. Pretty! I've never seen any but the stainless barrels that hold 15 liters. A bit much for me, so I buy 5 liters in a big tin when I find oil I like.
Good that you didn't buy glass because light is the enemy of oil they tell me.

At 11/17/2008 11:10:00 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Barb, I'm glad you decided to buy the urn. You will never, ever regret having bought it. It's a beautiful piece and will look lovely in any home where you live. Enjoy it! LMichelle in Louisville

At 11/17/2008 02:49:00 PM , Anonymous iceteaforme said...

A beautiful vessel for the netar of the Gods. You will never regret this purchase.

At 11/17/2008 09:55:00 PM , Blogger Sandrac said...

Barb, that is so beautiful! I'm sure that you'll enjoy it.


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