Flavored with crushed branches of fennel, these avocado-green olives are harvested very early and only available for an extremely short time. I’ve been anticipating them ever since Jacques, my favorite olive merchant, started getting excited when he told me about their arrival a few weeks back. So I knew they’d be special.
(If someone who’s been selling olives for twenty-plus years is still excited about a specific olive, believe me, I pay attention.)
Les olives Salonenques are very fresh with a firm, meaty texture and a whiff of aromatic fennel. But these Provencal olives don’t last long, which is why you won’t likely find them outside of France. Jacques will ladle some into a sack, weight them, then add extra liquid to guard against them discoloring, which they do quickly because of their freshness.
You’ll need to eat them relatively soon after you buy them. So get ‘em while you can.
And since I can get ‘em, believe me, I’m eating as many as I can before they’re gone.
Le Soleil Provencal
Richard Lenoir/Bastille Market
Thursday and Sunday
Jacques’ stand is at the center, on the east side, near Le Préau café
(He’s often at the Maubert-Mutualité market in Paris as well.)