Do you ever stand there staring like a deer in headlights when looking at the vast displays of olive oil to choose from? I know how to tell if it’s from Italy, but beyond that I am clueless. Well, I admit I was until I came across this great article that explains what to look for! Felice per la cottura! (Happy cooking!)
When it comes to quality olive oil, Italy certainly holds the world’s first place. Yet, do we really know how to recognize a truly good olive oil from a mediocre one?
Here are some simple rules to recognize a quality extra virgin olive oil.
First of all, always go for dark bottles that protect their content from light and avoid its oxidation.
Labels should give us basic information:
The olives’ geographical origin…
Where they have been pressed…
Where the oil has been bottled.
Checkmate to bad olive oil: here are some simple rules to recognize a quality extra virgin oil.
Acidity should always be lower than 3%.
Olives should always be cold pressed, which means the process should take place at less than 27 degree Celsius to keep flavors intact.
Color and clearness are important parameters to recognize a quality extra virgin oil.
It shouldn’t be too liquid, as it would mean it contains high quantities of polyunsaturated fats.
It should smell fresh, with hints of freshly cut grass, tomato peels, almonds, and artichoke leaves.
It should taste bitter and tangy, that is, rich in polyphenols!
Make sure its expiration date isn’t over 18 months from production and that price isn’t lower than 18 USD per litre (15 Euro).
If all these parameters are met, than you got yourself a great bottle of extra virgin olive oil! Try it also to fry: it’ll surprise you.
And of course, always check the label says 100% Italian.