A good quality product has a longer shelf life than olive oils of inferior quality. We recommend using the oils within 2 years. It is best to stock up on fresh extra virgin olive oil several times during the year or once in spring when the new harvest arrives.
Oxygen (air), heat and exposure to light accelerate spoilage and how quickly the oil becomes rancid. UV rays penetrate even through dark bottles, so it is therefore advisable to store the bottle in a kitchen drawer. Large containers are always better for storage than small ones (just like with wine).
Our olives are usually harvested in November/December, when they turn from green to purple. Some farmers harvest green, less ripe olives at the beginning of October. This results in a strong «early harvest» olive oil. Harvest time varies in the Mediterranean from region to region and year to year. In Morocco, for example, it can be as early as September.
Olive oil is fruity, has a bitterness on the tongue or palate and a certain pungency in the throat. Of course these three things must be balanced and not perceived as unpleasant.
They protect the olives and later the oil from going rancid, i.e. going bad. They do the same to our bloodstream and protect against hardening of the arteries by binding to free radicals. They have anti-inflammatory properties and remove “bad” cholesterol in the blood, so they can have a direct impact in preventing thrombosis and heart attacks. Fresh extra virgin olive oil is a key part of the Mediterranean diet and is an important reason why this way of eating is so healthy.
Yes, not only can you cook with olive oil, you should ONLY cook with olive oil. It’s a myth that extra virgin olive oil becomes unhealthy if you heat it up. Tests have shown that cooking with fresh, flawless extra virgin olive oils is much healthier than sunflower and rapeseed oils.
«Extra virgin» is the term for olive oil of the highest grade. The production is exclusively mechanical or physical – and without the use of chemicals. Extra virgin quality is achieved through careful and quick processing of high quality fruit. Free fatty acid content must not exceed 0.8% and the oil must have no taste defects, according to a certified sensory taste test.
On arrival at the mil the olives are placed on a conveyor belt, are stripped of the leaves and washed. After that, the olives are processed into a paste and churned for some time in big tanks. This separates the oil droplets from the fruit. The pulp then goes into a centrifuge where the oil and water are separated from the pulp and the olive stones. Finally the oil is separated from the water and then stored in steel tanks ready to be packaged and shipped.