To select the best wines, there is no secret: you have to taste them. For olive oil, it is exactly the same thing. You have to use your senses (sight, smell and taste) to perceive the quality of the terroir and the work of the producer behind each exceptional olive oil.
At Oliviers&Co, we organise a tasting committee. Eric Verdier, our quality and creation director specialising in sensory analysis, is in charge. For each wine, we compare notes and appreciations. This stage is essential, as it allows us to refine our definition of the organoleptic characteristics to guarantee you the best.
Each year, between December and February, we receive from the producers in our Parisian laboratory, several dozen samples of olive oil from their fresh harvest. Each oil is tasted and graded by our selector Eric Verdier, who has 25 years of experience and more than 15,000 samples tested.
This selection is made according to a strict 200-point specification that takes into consideration: the traceability of the olive to the bottle, the excellence and respect of the producer's traditional production processes, the organoleptic properties of the oil and a physical-chemical analysis, provided by certified laboratories.
Among the chemical criteria we look particularly at 3 key levels to rate the quality of the oil, its purity and its potential stability over time: the level of polyphenols, the level of acidity and the level of peroxides. We explain in a dedicated article what these 3 levels are.
The selected olive oils are then integrated into our collection of vintage wines and are then regularly subjected to sensory analysis tests in order to follow their evolution and stability over time.
Why do we receive and select oils and not olives?
Because the olives must be pressed at the mill as soon as possible after harvesting to ensure freshness and optimum quality of the olive oil.
Who better than the local producer to guarantee that the olives are pressed on the day of harvest?
Why aren't we producers?
Because our mission is to help you discover the richness and diversity of Mediterranean olive oils, like a wine merchant with wine.
A demanding selection: every year we travel around the Mediterranean to select a hundred or so artisanal mills according to very strict specifications. Our producers guarantee the terroir, the olive varieties and a vintage olive oil produced in the purest regional tradition and in sustainable agriculture. All the oils are rated on a 200-point scale, and only thirty or so are selected each year by our olive expert.
A unique traceability from the orchard to the bottle: We control more than 1200 batches per year, both on the sensory and gustatory conformity, but also by a rigorous physicochemical analysis. All our oils are then bottled in our workshop in Mane in Haute-Provence. Because we don't want to hide anything from our customers, each label specifies the country of origin, the name of the estate and the producer, the date of harvest and the olive varieties.
Quality and freshness: In our partner mills, the olives are hand-picked and cold-pressed less than 24 hours after harvest. From 5 to 12 kilos of olives are used to obtain a litre of exceptional oil: this low yield is the guarantee of quality. Our aromatic oils are obtained by simultaneously pressing olives with citrus fruits, aromatic herbs or fresh spices: no flavouring is therefore added. Our bottles and cans are opaque, to preserve the taste quality of our olive oils.
MEETING OUR OLIVE OIL PRODUCERS
Here Sabino Leone in Puglia, Italy and Antoine Mora in Provence, France: from the hundred year old olive tree to your kitchen, it is all passion and know-how that express themselves and guarantee unquestionable quality: