"It's not much but it's ours"

Monday, June 11, 2007



Well, don’t take my word for it, but New York Magazine recently announced that the best olive oil in England was to be found in the unlikely setting of the Embassy Electrical Supply Shop on Compton St in Clerkenwell.

Bearing in mind the tiresome American craving for absolutes

“squeal, where is the absolute best poppy seed bagel between 93rd and 96th St on Amsterdam, squeal?”

and the fact that the very same magazine announced that The River Café was following on in the London tradition of classical French restaurants, ahem, you can take this announcement with as many shovels full of salt as you can imagine.

However, what is certainly without question is that this small store selling fuse wire, cutters and all manner of goods of the electronic variety is home to some of the finest olive oil I have tried in a very long time and, on top of which, a rather splendid pomegranate molasses.

How? Why? What the hell? What gives?

Well, the owner, Memhet is of Turkish Cypriot extraction (see what I did there, olives, extraction? Please yourselves) and inherited olive groves from his parent’s small farm in Lurigina. He started selling the oil and olives from his shop under the name Murat Du Carta and it took off

Last year he brought in nearly two tonnes of the stuff and, this year, thanks to the New York magazine, he will bring in over three tonnes of single estate first cold pressing along side Heaven knows how many tonnes of black olives.

He has been so successful that he has now purchased another property in Turkey and has planted a grove of a further two thousand trees.

The new batch was picked last November and is on the water as we speak and due to arrive on the 25th June. Memhet gave me a taste of the last batch, it was still beautifully fresh and lawny with slight citrus undertones.

Memhet sells the oil in 1ltr or 2.5ltr containers and, if he likes you and your bottles are clean and to his satisfaction, he will even decant in your own glassware overnight

He is doing a special offer of a litre of oil with half a kilo of black olives for £8 to celebrate the arrival of the new batch. I suspect, as he has done before, he will sell out very quickly, so it is worth seeking out for something a little bit different.

I have no idea if it is the best in England. But, squeal, I do know that it is absolutely the best, squeal, in Clerkenwell, between St John St and The Goswell Rd, squeal.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have to admit that I subscribed to that magazine for the best part of 2 years and it does spout plenty of garbage and rely excessively on soundbites etc. That said if they've put us on to a gem then fair play.

By the time this career break concludes, and assuming that I come back to London, it will have been 3 years since I lived full time in the city and I look forward to discovering/rediscovering hidden treasures like this place.

Monday, June 11, 2007 6:11:00 pm  
Blogger Howard said...

That poppyseed bagel comment just sums up Chowhound for me.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007 10:49:00 am  
Blogger Unknown said...

Hello Hermano 2

Hope you're well. I like your blog a lot and it's nice to see all that food it makes my mouth water! If you can help do you know of a good Indian restuarant in the EC1 or N1 area that isn't too expensive? If you can help, please email at

I hope you can help me, I look forward to hearing from you

Wednesday, June 13, 2007 12:14:00 pm  

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