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The House of Olives

When it comes to cooking, there are certain ingredients that you just can’t do without. Ingredients such as balsamic vinegars and olive oils. Over the past few years, olive oils in particular have become somewhat of an obsession with some cooks. I have a few friends who go nuts over infused olive oils. Then there’s my wife who’s a purist and loves extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). Whatever your preference, infused or not, shots in the morning for the health nuts (also see here for EVOO benefits), or those who stick with the oils (and vinegars) in their original flavor profiles, there are businesses out there that cater to all of your needs and wants.

For those living in North Buffalo, or for anyone who tends to hop around looking for different varietals, Sandy Hofschneider has opened The House of Olives at 1211 Hertel Avenue. Sandy and her family recently moved back to Buffalo from Charlotte where she owned an olive oil business. She and her son Justin have fixed up storefront that was in need of some serious living. From removing drop ceilings and exposing the intact and original tin paneling, to installing new flooring, the shop looks fantastic. “We are really excited to be a part of the Hertel Avenue Community,” Sandy told me. “We are so happy with our location and the character that the 100 year old building offers.”


Yesterday I stopped in to pick check the place out and grab some olive oil for a rare stay-at-home dinner. Not being a cook myself, I was a bit perplexed at the infuse selection, which included butter, chipotle, jalapeno, scallion, basil and garlic mushroom (see products). I figured that my wife should try something new and different so I grabbed a bottle of the garlic mushroom ($15) and continued to poke around the place. I complimented the owners on the fresh look of the store, and sampled a few of the flavors to see what I had been missing all these years.”The vision of The House of Olives is to become an anchor store for the expanding Hertel Avenue Community,” Sandy said. “We continually seek out the freshest extra virgin olive oils and herbs and spices from all over the world as well as balsamic vinegars that promise a dynamic flavor profile. We will continue to expand our product line and customize what we offer to the meet the needs and expectations of our clientele.”

Other items that are available at The House of Olives are spices, sea salts and herbs. Sandy is also looking to possibly carry dried pastas, olives, breads, etc, and is interested to hear what her customers have to say when it comes to exploring new products. In the meantime, if you’re a fan of green apple, Habanero peppers, chocolate, or figs, these are just some of the unusual olive oil and balsamic vinegar flavors that can now be found on Hertel Avenue. “You can take a simple pasta dish or salad and create ever-changing dinners by just adding these different flavors,” Justin pointed out. “Our oils are from Modena Italy and our balsamics have been aged for twelve years. It’s as easy as getting some fresh bread and experimenting with the flavors to figure out what suits you best. Or try different recipes (see here) pairings (see here), which will open a whole other world of flavors to the mix.”

As for Sandy’s favorite flavor in the shop, “That’s a tough one,” she pondered. “It’s a toss up between the basil and garlic. The flavor is so distinct and as with all our oils so versatile. You don’t need to be a culinary chef to create a great meal with these products. Dipping bread, over salads or used as a finish over your meat, chicken or seafood…the flavors just pop!  And your friends will think you took a culinary class.”

The House of Olives | 1211 Hertel Avenue | Buffalo NY 14216 | 716-876-6457 | Facebook

*Mention you saw House of Olives on Buffalo Rising and get a 10% discount on your purchase.


Written by queenseyes


Newell Nussbaumer is 'queenseyes' - Eyes of the Queen City and Founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Festival that built the world's largest ice maze (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurrious! winter festival. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator behind Saturday Artisan Market (SAM) at Canalside. Founder of The Peddler retro and vintage market. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at The Hotel @ The Lafayette, and the Madd Tiki Winter Luau. Other projects: Navigetter.

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  • micahh64

    Add another one to the Buffalo ethnic foods map . . .
    At first I thought this was part of another store that sold olive oil, whose name I couldn’t remember at first.
    Then I realized that store (D’Avolio) is on Elmwood (
    With The House of Olives on Hertel, this is another sign that Hertel Ave. is becoming the new EV . . .

  • beaches21

    LOVE this store, its a great addition to the Hertel scene. The olive oils are delicious, especially the garlic mushroom. So excited that we continue to get new shops on this street.

  • colt072663

    I have seen the wonderful selection in this store !  The products are over the top and she added spices also !!!  If you are going there ASAP then you are missing out !!!

  • colt072663

    I have used these products in multiple recipes…..the combinations she puts together are AMAZING!! I use them everyday in my kitchen.  I get the great tastes and the health benefits.
    And im a big habanero guy….she has this habanero oil that is unchallenged out there !  If you like heat then grab some. I highly recommend it and suggest everyone grab a bottle !

  • Dannitodd

    Great Products and Store…Love the location!!

  • jiminycricket

    Olive oil stores in Buffalo 4. Olive Oil stores in all of Manhattan 5.

  • obootsy

    I have been to this store and it has different products than the other stores. I’m glad that I have choices. The spices were super fresh and very different too and much less expensive than the franchise spice stores! Welcome to the neighborhood!!

  • candiceduffy

    As an Italian I love my Olive Oil. This is the best! Great job with the store!

  • Wantthebest

    Wow! It’s finally here!! I have been waiting for my first visit to The House of Olives – I am excited to learn about all it! The store looks fantastic, and I can’t wait to eat healthier.
    Check it out!

  • OldFirstWard

    Looks like a fantastic store with an old world feel.  I hope to visit soon.  Fresh bread and cheeses would be a great compliment.

  • northtowndweller

    These oils are great!  The basil is my favorite.  I’ve tried similar products from other stores but this one beats them all. Nice to know its a family run business!

  • The store is beautiful! The workers were very knowable about the products. Can’t wait to go back!

  • Robkohout

    This is exactly what type of passion we need in local business ownership in Buffalo! I love the store!

  • lafayette1985

    Store looks great.  Hopefully we can start to see some stores like this come into downtown.

  • Michaelermd

    Bought 8 bottles on my first visit because I refused to choose between them. Honey ginger on my chicken salads… Yum!!!

  • Magnolia107

    Spent my honeymoon in Europe, this store took me right back!! The decor and atmosphere the owner created is perfection to say the least. My husband uses the cranberry walnut balsamic on everything, making a trip back this week to re-stock,SUPER impressed!! Two thumbs way up!!

  • Robert32

    This place is unbelievable, I think my wife and I tried almost everything. The only problem was we wanted to buy everything, too hard to make a decision on just a few, which is why we bought 10! Can’t wait to bring friends in with us. Hertel is on the rise for sure, excited for what’s to come.

  • fpord

    Great looking store. Great selection. Great people willing to help you understand the options and make the right selections.

  • fashionprincess

    Beautiful store, great products to choose from  -one of my favorites is the basil flavored olive oil
    locally family owned business so glad they came to North Buffalo . If you haven’t checked it out yet make sure to visit .

  • Nhenry

    Beautiful store with amazing oils. Friendly and knowledgeable owners.

  • mgreen

    After walking into the family owned olive oil and vinegar tasting bar, I was so impressed! Their selection was unbelievable! They even have spices! Staff was so friendly and very knowledgeable! I was in the store for about 45 minutes dipping their fresh Italian bread in all of their different selections. I was very impressed with the quality of these products! I must say their 25 star vinegar was my favorite! I bought two bottles!!!! They recommended I try it with avocado. Can’t wait to try it out! Will be back again soon!

  • the repetitive gushing comments from names heretofore unknown at bro have a whiff of sock-puppetry to them.  just sayin.’