Italina Pine Nuts

Anyone know where are all the Italian pine nuts? As I understand it, most are coming from China now and leave a very bitter aftertaste and affect taste buds for a few days after eating them. I have experienced this myself and read about it later, but now can't find any that aren't from China. HELP!!!

  • Posted by: anne
  • June 2, 2014


klrcon June 3, 2014
FYI, Whole Foods carries Turkish pine nuts and while they're not cheap (they never are) they are pretty good quality. Never had a pine mouth problem with them.
Valentina S. June 3, 2014
ChefJune has a point - NEVER buy the Chinese ones! Pinoli are crazy expensive even in Italy (I'm talking about 6$ for a 1 oz. packet - a little more than a handful), so good quality ones are going to be pricey. Middle eastern ones make sense, though.
cookbookchick June 3, 2014
But why never buy Chinese pine nuts? I have both -- the supposedly Italian ones from the Italian grocery were (and are) VERY pricey. Also a bit larger and plumper. But the Chinese are cheaper and more readily available. I have used them for years and never noticed any adverse effects. Your warning, ChefJune, makes it sound like they are dangerous in some way. I would appreciate your insight.
LucyS June 4, 2014
Cookbookchick: there is a phenomenon called "pine nut mouth" where some Chinese pine nuts (which usually taste pretty much normal) can affect your taste buds for a few days after eating them, giving you a constant bitter/metallic taste. Basically, everything you eat tastes like pennies. It's horrible (though not actually dangerous, just unpleasant). I don't think ALL Chinese pine nuts have this problem, but it's common enough that many people recommend avoiding them.
cookbookchick June 5, 2014
Thanks for the explanation, LucyS! I have never had a problem with pine nuts, so this is news to me. Sounds awful, though.
ChefJune June 3, 2014
I've been shopping for Pine nuts for decades now, and I'd be surprised if any available outside Italy really come from there. If they do, the price would likely be prohibitive. My sources (even in the North End of Boston - traditionally Italian) recommend the Turkish pignoli as better quality. They've always told me to NOT buy the Chinese.
Maedl June 3, 2014
Try You might also look for pinon nuts--the North American pine nut.
sexyLAMBCHOPx June 3, 2014
They state the origin is China.
Maedl June 3, 2014
Nutsonline has pine nuts from Spain and the US as well.
anne June 2, 2014
I meant Italian, dammit.
Susan W. June 2, 2014
Amazon carries them. We also have little Italian grocery stores and delis that carry them here in Portland.
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