Lisa Funaro is the owner and operator of Di Oliva Tasting Bar, a local gourmet shop (2632 East Hastings) that specializes in high quality olive oil and vinegar. We recently caught up with Lisa to ask her a few questions about her store, and find out a few new ways to use these highly versatile cooking ingredients. When we ask Lisa how she got into the industry, and says she got the idea from her experience visiting gourmet olive oil stores in the US with a similar concept. “I have always loved olive oil and vinegar,” Funaro says. “I went into one of these stores in the states and loved the idea of tasting before you buy. Because I don’t know how many times I’ve bought a bottle of olive oil, spent $20-$30 on a bottle, got home and I just didn’t like the taste, or it tasted off, or there was something wrong and I thought now what, what a waste.” “I thought if there are people out there that love it as much as me, then it could be something.” When we ask Funaro about quality, she explains there are very few olive oils out there that are true olive oils. “It’s not that easy to find a real nice one,” she says. If you have a foodie in your life, Di Oliva is the perfect destination for something completely out of the box. “I know people who buy (our) butter one, and drizzle it on their bagel in the morning,” Lisa says. “In the evening, the espresso balsamic on coffee with whipping cream.” When we ask Lisa what some great uses are for her olive oils, she isn’t short on suggestions. “It can be used for anything, everything,” she says. “Drizzle it on salads, marinades, and the vinegars, ice cream, on deserts, cheese platters. Olive oil too, after you do your pasta, you can drizzle it on like the garlic olive oil. Balsamic again, fruit salad, vegetables, ice cream! Yogurt and marinates.” We’re giving away 1 giftcard ($30 value) and 1 olive oil set ($30 value) to Di Oliva, so two lucky people can experience their amazing selection on us. To enter, simply copy and paste the following on Twitter: I entered the @DiOlivaStore Giveaway from @EastVillageVan #evvexperience https://www.eastvillagevancouver.ca/di-oliva-giveaway Bonus entry: Share this blog post on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheEastVillageVancouver/posts/1068286919909915 Contest ends April 20th. Winners will be notified via Twitter.