Tips for Selecting and Using Olive Oil
Here are a few tips that our Olive Oil ExpertsI follow when purchasing, using, and storing Olive Oil:
Maintain Olive Oil Out Of the Light.
You may have spent a great amount of money on your own Olive Oil and you want to look at these labels lined up on your countertop. Unfortunately, light destroys Olive Oil so our Olive Oil Specialist suggest that you stow it away. Nothing destroys Olive Oil quicker than light, except heat.
Maintain Olive Oil Away From Heat.
Don't store your olive oil on that shelf above your stove or next to it, although that's where it's usually handy. in addition, try and keep it away from sunlight as well. It is best not to store Olive Oil from the refrigerator. If you do, a handful of Olive Oil experts state that if you take it outside, the condensation can dilute the Olive Oil and cause it to spoil faster.
If You Can, Taste Before You Buy.
Olive Oil changes from batch-to-batch, and a variety of places offer you an opportunity to taste it before you purchase it. Our Olive Oil experts recommend that you take a good smell first; a lot can be determined by the oil smells before you taste it. Is it nutty, grassy, sweet, oily, or 'green'? All those are qualities you might like, or not. Start looking for stores and food markets in your area that offer tastings, so that you can sample. It's a great way to find one that you like.
Don't Pay Much Attention To The Country Of Origin.
Just like people say,"American food is bad," there's good American food and there's bad American food. Same with olive oil. There's good Tuscan olive oil and there's bad Tuscan olive oil. Just because something says'Tuscany' or'Provence' on the label does not mean it's necessarily good or bad.
Also be aware that "Made In France" (or "Made in Italy") means something different than "Product of France. ""Made In..." means the oil is actually made in that country with olives that are supposed to be grown and pressed there.
"Product of Italy" means that the olive oil was bottled there, however, could be made from olives from North African that were sent to Italy for bottling. It's not that that's necessarily bad, but it's nice to be up-front about these sort of things with consumers so we know what we're getting.
About Olive Oil, You Will Generally Get More.
People will pay $15 or $20 on a bottle of wine, that will last through one meal. On the other hand, in regards to Olive Oil, which will last weeks or months, customers balk at paying anywhere near those prices. Price is not necessarily an indication of quality, but a $3.99 bottle of Extra-Virgin Olive Oil is more then likely not the real deal.
Use Olive Oil While It Is Still In It Form.
Great Extra-Virgin Olive Oil will last about a year if kept the right way. Typically, cheap Olive Oils are often already rancid when you open them since they're mechanically-harvested, which bruises the fruits. Then they're allowed to sit for a few days before pressing, which probably increases the chance and speed of spoilage.
Organize Your Olive Oil Own Tasting!
Regardless of what anyone else says, only you know what you like and what price you feel comfortable paying for a bottle. Our Olive Oil experts recommend that you check your local markets and food stores and taste what available. Purchase various Olive Oils and taste them with others. Read up and learn why an exceptional Olive Oil is actually worth it, and you will appreciate that drizzle of fragrant, zippy, or peppery olive oil from the jar even more.
- Chris Lara