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Global Goods Come to the Garage: Salt & Olive to Open Next Month

A new sign along Mt. Auburn St. indicates the new opening of Salt and Olive, a Cambridge-based oil, spice, and tea company.
A new sign along Mt. Auburn St. indicates the new opening of Salt and Olive, a Cambridge-based oil, spice, and tea company. By Jonathan G. Yuan
By Ellen M. Burstein and Sydnie M. Cobb, Crimson Staff Writers

Salt & Olive Market will open on April 1 and fill the vacancy left by the departure of Starbucks earlier this year.

The market offers its patrons speciality foodstuffs characteristic of European cuisines, including olive oil, cheese and charcuterie, fresh pasta and sauces, beer and wine, and organic spices and teas.

Salt & Olive is not a store new to Harvard Square — it was previously located a few blocks down the road on Massachusetts Avenue. The store’s opening takes place as several restaurants frequented by college students — including Chipotle, Sweet Bakery, and Crema Café — have closed their doors in recent months.

Students looking to hone their culinary skills can also take advantage of Salt & Olive’s year-round cooking classes.

Mary Taylor, Salt & Olive’s founder and a specialist in olive oil tasting, said she believes that her store will be the perfect addition to the Garage’s diverse food offerings.

“The Garage is a vibrant, international, and popular destination for students, tourists, and folks who live and work in the area,” Taylor said. “I think Salt & Olive Market fits beautifully into this diverse space. We have organic spices, salts, teas, and olive oils from around the world.”

Some students said the new store could be an exciting replacement for a beloved landmark.

Greg B. Cain ’22, a contributing writer to The Crimson, said he can foresee the store being useful but that it may fall outside of the stores frequented by college students.

“I think it’s a great idea, and you know if I was cooking I’d want the best ingredients. But I imagine given that it’s so niche, it might be a higher-end sort of thing, and in the interest of a college student’s budget, it might not be a great fit for me,” Cain said.

“In a way, I think it’s somewhat of an upgrade given that there’s already another Starbucks in the Square, and there’s nothing too original about having a Starbucks,” he added.

Lauren A. Tucker ’22 likewise said she mourned the loss of her study spot but said she is interested in Salt & Olive’s wares.

Tucker said she is hesitant about the new store because she had viewed the Starbucks location as “kind of cozy and tucked away.”

“I don’t know how practical that’ll be for Harvard students, and I’ll miss the study spot, but I guess it’s kind of cool,” Tucker said.

— Staff writer Ellen M. Burstein can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @ellenburstein.

— Staff writer Sydnie M. Cobb can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @cobbsydnie.

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