Just a personal note: the colour of the olive oil doesn't necessarily tell you much. Grass is also a good source of chlorophyll! In southern Italy, where counterfeiting olive oil is, or anyway was, rampant, there is a group of tasters who use purple glasses to hold the oil they're examining so that they aren't influenced by the colour. Having said all that, a fresh, extra virgin oil should look deep green and might well be cloudy.
|Extra virgin olives oil ready for an olive oil tasting.|
For you olive oil tasting lesson, one option is to stay at an agriturismo where olive oil is produced and where the owner is able and willing to do a comparative tasting. Podere Felceto, a vacation villa located near Panzano in Chianti, does exactly that. In fact, the owners organise an olive oil evening where a light meal follows the tasting. Needless to say, there's plenty of their organic olive oil in the dishes as well as in the tasting glasses!
Another option is to take a day tour where an olive oil tasting is part of the programme. A good tour has either a driver-guide who is expert in comparing olive oils or who can take you to a producer who is expert.
More about the olive oil tasting evening at Villa Felceto in Tuscany.
More about the different commercial grades of olive oil.
Author: Anna Maria Baldini
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