SELECTING YOUR OLIVE OIL
We recommend that you always buy Extra Virgin Olive Oil, which is the top grade of olive oil as a sound investment for your personal health.
Look for Australian, as a stronger guarantee of EV assurance, and look for cooler climate oil as these generally have higher nutritional qualities.
Buy in dark glass or tin, and decant any larger containers into smaller glass containers on opening to minimise exposure to air in storage. There are four things that will affect the quality of a good oil. These are light, heat, air and time.
Using a top grade olive oil will mean you will use less, because it has more flavour. Try and purchase olive oil that has the year of harvest printed on the bottle. An olive oil should ideally be consumed in the year it is produced. Like all fats, it will eventually deteriorate.
Due to the higher Anti-oxidant properties of cool climate olive oils, they generally will keep longer than oils produced in a warmer climate. ASHBOLT Olive oil is produced in one of the coolest zones in Tasmania & exhibits all the positive qualities of a robust cool climate oil.
Remember to always store your oil in a cool dark place out of direct heat.
Why taste your olive oil?
We encourage you to regularly smell and taste your kitchen oils to check its freshness and suitability for consumption and to develop an understanding of the differences between different quality olive oils.
We all know what rancid butter tastes like and discard it as soon as we realise. But many are not yet aware of the difference between fresh olive oil and olive oil that has passed its use-by-date. Many kitchen cupboards are stocked with a range of oils that have been there for years. Oxidised oil has a lower nutritional and anti-oxidant value.
As with wine, there are all manner of qualities and styles of olive oil. Tasting oil is an art form, and takes many years to achieve a high level of proficiency. However, in simplistic terms, there a couple of basic steps in understanding the quality of oil:
- The first is to really understand the freshness of the oil; Inhaling the vapours from a small amount of olive oil in a warm cup, should reveal exciting & fresh characteristics.
- The second is whether or not it is a balanced oil; breath in some air over the oil and notice where the flavours hit the palate. Experience the oil “au naturale”.
From these two steps you can discover the excitement that comes from tasting the complexities, flavours and delights that a good olive oil can bring to the table.