Friday, July 15, 2011

Sweet Local Visit: Regal Pickle Worcester, MA

There comes a time in everyone's life when you have the best damn pickle ever.  It's so tasty you want to shout it from the rooftops. The perfect amount of salt, mixed with just the right crunch, and the lingering of that fresh cucumber taste before it was shocked in brine. Mmmm. Here's my shout...

In my home city we have a hidden gem called Regal Pickle. If you've been to a deli in the Northeastern region of the U.S. you have most likely had one of these briney treats. Lot's of people say they make their own at restaurants and deli's but in reality it is Worcester's own Regal Pickle. Tucked away in an unassuming old building lives the pickle factory which has been making pickles since 1979. They are the largest pickle processor in the Northeast. 

I have to say the building looks like it's home to some of Worcester's mafia but- it was perfectly fine during the factory's retail hours of 6:30AM to 3:15PM. 

Here's how it works: You walk in, you ring the buzzer, you tell the man behind the counter what you want and he brings it in a little white pail. Simple. A gallon of pickles will cost you $7.50. Yup, you read that right. Seven dollars and fifty cents. If you come back with the pail the next gallon will cost $6.50. I prefer their half sour pickles but they also carry kosher pickles, pickled tomatoes and sauerkraut.

If you aren't a Worcesterite but are traveling through I highly recommend you making a quick trip into the city for an amazing pickle. It must be good if I'm writing about it on a Friday night.... Please do visit them, they are located on 41 Mason Street Worcester, MA 01610. 


  1. OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!! You have solved a mystery for me! I love those half sour pickles and the are expensive in the markets or the deli! I am going there this week!

  2. What a secret! I can't wait to check them out!

  3. Excellent blog here! Also your website loads up
    very fast! What host are you using? Can I get your affiliate link to your host?
    I wish my web site loaded up as quickly as yours lol
    Review my homepage See Post

    1. When I worked there in the old days, it was $4 per gallon, $3 if you brought the container back. Of course I had a little leeway in the pricing since it's Dad's pickle factory - what was he gonna do, fire me? He actually did multiple times, of course.

      * Tips for ordering at the counter - if you like vinegar pickles, get the dills - spears, chips or whole.

      * Between the acid in the vinegar, and the acid in the tomatoes, if you keep them refrigerated, pickled green tomatoes last forever (assuming you could keep that gallon-sized tub in the fridge indefinitely).

      * If you're more a half sour fan, ask for "number ones" to get the smaller-diameter pickles. Regal orders, processes, and ships by cucumber grade (size), and with a specific run schedule to meet weekly wholesale orders as they come in during the course of the week.
      There's usually enough overflow inventory to get you what you like. There are also 3a and 3b - references to the medium size pickles you see in deli counters. There are even 4a's which are pretty much those monster pickles you find at county fairs. If on the salty side is more your thing, the brine for the number ones has a slightly higher salinity in order to adequately penetrate the thicker skin of a smaller cucumber.

      * If you like those toe curling nasty sour pickles, they'll do that too on request.

      Dad makes the pickles, I write the online streaming media software out in Los Angeles...

      Anonymous - check out a web browser plugin called ySlow (started as a project at Yahoo, now spun off into open source). It will give you a lot of suggestions on how to tune your page loads for better performance.

    2. Hey,
      I'm working with the Masters program at Clark University, and I'm looking at larger successful, sustainable employers in the Chandler Street corridor. Do you think you and I could set up a time to chat about the factory? I tried getting in touch with them, but they refused to speak to me. Thanks!

  4. They make the best Half Sour I've ever tasted
    will have to make the trip to Worcester and get a pail
    first tried them at the SYSCO food show WOW
    Dave K.

  5. Totally worth the trip. Had the pickles at City Steam Brewery in Hartford, CT. Told the server that I NEEDED to know the brand. So when I learned how close they were located to me...I took a trip. Seedy area...but the pickles are worth it. And it makes for a good story. Best half sours!

  6. Hi there Lisa M. Seedy area? Sounds like a comment some ignorant out of towner might make. And where is it you reside?

  7. Gallon of 1/2 sour pickles now up to $9 and you can no longer bring your bucket back and get a $1 off but still so worth the price O have been going here now 6 years love the pickles