The Grocery List: A.G. Ferrari

It takes a bit of a splurging mood for me to head to AG Ferrari, however it is the only store that carries many, many items that I routinely need in my kitchen! For example, it is the only place I know of that carries burrata (the mozzarella varietal with a core of soft butter-like texture, typical of Southern Italy and brought to celebrity in the Bay Area by the hip restaurants that started including it in their menu as appetizers, like La Strada in Palo Alto) and robiola, a light mascarpone of sorts, used in diet versions of tiramisu’ but delicious alone. During the Holidays I head here to find cotechino, a high-fat fresh sausage that is a typical new year’s day fare in my region of Emilia Romagna.

Here are the product that will put me in a splurging mood at AG Ferrari:

Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale, traditional balsamic vinegar- a small case with very good products.

Bread: a full selection of Italian breads and grissini piemontesi, Piedmont breadsticks:

Rizzoli products: Rizzoli is a small producers of canned fish products from Parma. It has been in business since the beginning of the 1900, and the quality of their product is astounding. Try their anchovy paste, for example, or the alici (fresh anchovies) fillets to become a believer!

Pasta di farro- emmer wheat pasta: a different type of pasta, with a higher fiber content.

Sweets: some cookies and bakery products are available only here. Cookies, for example, a staple of the home consumed Italian breakfast, are usually dry cracker-like, with little sugar. Not being a baker, I like buying some cakes and oven-products outside. A few examples from small artisanal producers: Torta Sbrisolada, a Mantova specialty, or Panforte, a Siena specialty. To wrap up the sweets section, Pastiglie Leone are widely available on the shelves, possibly the most famous Italian candies! In addition, you can count on all of these product for a designer package and pretty wrapping!


Among everyday use items I usually pick up polenta flour and pan grattato, crumbled bread. I like the fact that it is not spiced with anything, and it is made with hard-crusted Italian bread: I use it for cotolette and to add a bit of texture to a pasta with broccoli.

AG Ferarri is also the only place I have seen chinotto and Sanbitter in the refrigerated section. I love the bitter taste of chinotto, but I regularly pick up a couple of Sanbitter to make aperitivo at home. And, of course, wines: I like the AG Ferarri-branded prosecco, and in general the wine selection is such that it doesn’t drive you broke!

A.G. Ferrari
Various locations around the Bay Area

8 Responses to “The Grocery List: A.G. Ferrari”

  1. You might want to try Cowgirl Creamery at the Ferry Building for Burrata, they carry a US version which is the one used in several local restaurants. Both their mozzarella products are good, though the Bubalis Bubalis is probably not worth the expense over Costco’s Garofalo.

  2. [...] I keep three types of Balsamico at home: a cheap bottle for everyday use, more acidic and perfect to drizzle over salad- which I buy at Costco; a pricier version, more dense and a tad sweeter which I use to make filetto all’aceto blsamico, balsamic vinegar filet, that I find at Cosentino’s; and a bottle of Tradizionale which I save for Parmesan cheese, strawberries, and ice cream, a real treat to take out for important dinners and Christmas- I got it for our wedding, but you can find it at the Pasta Shop, Draegers and A.G. Ferrari. [...]

  3. [...] and extra-virgin olive oil is as impressive as you’d expect from a specialty store like A.G. Ferrari- quite extensive on both fronts, they import some smaller extra-virgin olive oil producers that I [...]

  4. [...] A.G. Ferrari carries it, as well as Costco, Draegers, Whole Foods, Lucca, Cosentino, Zanotto, and many of the smaller specialty places. Thankfully it is not as hard as it used to be to find the original Parmigiano!! Resist the temptation to buy it grated, as often time you will not be able to tell if it is real Parmigiano you’re buying. Grab a chunk and grate it just before you need it to preserve the flavor… your dishes will shine with the addition of this royal cheese! [...]

  5. [...] A.G. Ferrari [...]

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  7. [...] etc.- although the rum ones are still the most traditional. The best feature of it all? Well, A.G. Ferrari’s buyers are no wimps. In fact, they are getting regular shipments of cuneesi from Giraudo!! [...]

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