Table of Contents
- 1 THE BEST OLIVE OIL IN THE WORLD.
- 1.1 1. The best olive oil in the world by ruled quality.
- 1.2 2.-The best Olive Oil in the world regarding nutritional quality.
- 1.3 3.-The best Olive Oil in the world related to commercial quality.
- 1.4 4.- The best Olive Oil in the world regarding Culinary and Sensorial Quality
- 1.5 5.-Conclussion
THE BEST OLIVE OIL IN THE WORLD.
We were really into into the situation, totally focused, and we were all silent. We were waiting for someone to find the keys when suddenly, one of us shouted, “TOMATO, IT’S A TOMATO PLANT, IT SMELLS… INCREDIBLE!”
We were at a friend’s house tasting three Extra Virgin Olive Oils from our area and trying to assess which was best. That experience is what led me to write this post.
HOW CAN WE MEASURE THE QUALITY OF AN OLIVE OIL?
Olive Oil is the only product in the world that is evaluated by a subjective panel to establish its qualities, properties, and defects from the rest.
This makes it very difficult for buyers to reach an objective conclusion in the category of higher quality oils. The average consumer does not have the experience and training necessary to differentiate one good EVOO from a very excellent one.
How do we get there, then?
As consumers, what do we hope for when trying to reach the best olive oil?
Is there any way or any method that tells us what is the best Olive Oil in the world?
Trying to explain this issue, and giving it more sense, I‘ll borrow from one of the excellent articles by Marino Uceda, due to my belief that he has achieved the most success in researching and explaining all of the factors surrounding the process of manufacturing of EVOO. Because of this, I think his analysis may clear things up for you.
It’s apparent that in order to find the best olive oil, we will always try to measure the oil’s quality, but, what kind of quality are we looking for?
1. The best olive oil in the world by ruled quality.
The designated olive oil quality is just about the only thing of value that we can find from the labels on the bottles, because as I said, it refers to the quality rules established by International Agencies, which are (or should be) heavily enforced. The main parameters are:
Acidity: The lower the acidity, the higher the quality
Peroxides: The lower the value, the higher the quality
K232 & K 270 indexes: The lower the value, the higher the quality
These values must be taken into account at the same time, because being analyzed alone (for example, only looking at the acidity), could give you the wrong bigger picture of the quality of your Olive Oil.
2.-The best Olive Oil in the world regarding nutritional quality.
Nutritional quality is related to chemical composition of the Oil, both in its unsaponifiable fraction and in minor compounds.
Saponifiable fraction is related to to triglycerides and unsaturated acids acids (oleic acid) mono fatty acids, saturated (palmitic and stearic) and polyunsaturated (linoleic and linolenic acid).
The greater or lesser presence of these components is related to the variety of olive chosen specifically. Picual oils are those that have more oleic acid, while saturated and have few polyunsaturated fatty acids. On the other side of the spectrum is the Arbequina variety.
Regarding unsaponifiable fraction is not as important as the variety in the previous cases. The time of year it is collected and even year of harvest (like wine) is also of utmost importance.
In summary: Variety, season, and even year of harvest are important factors.
From the commercial point of view, best oils are the stable ones which do not collapse with time or with improper storage conditions.
This value (stability) predicts oil life and gives us information on how much time can be guaranteed as an unchanging oil. It also gives us information on the shelf life, essential for the distribution and storage of olive oil.
In this field, variety also plays an important role, followed by the year of production. Picual and Cornicabra olive oils have exceptional responses, and are usually chosen by bulk buyers to allow extending the life of your oils when mixed with these.
Take into account the variety and year of production.
4.- The best Olive Oil in the world regarding Culinary and Sensorial Quality
This is actually the part that everyone understands, and usually if the above points have been met, this part is achieved, but what’s the best olive oil regarding these criteria?
There are as many opinions as colors, and this is where your training comes into play and where you should have fun!
The best option is to try and taste oils from several varieties, Picual, Arbequina, Cornicabra, Frantoio, Koroneiki, Carrasqueño, etc etc, until you find your favorite for each situation.
Find out by testing the sensory star characteristics: fruity, apple, green, bitter, ripe, fruity, spicy, sweet, astringent, fig, almond and wood.
With this method, you can find what you like by non-technical hedonistic tastings. Instead of initially being guided by someone already started on the subject, you can try various oils in the same session and combine them with different foods to test the result in each mixture.
Several videos on this subject are coming soon to my YouTube channel!
With olive oil, it’s more fun to try it with friends.
In summary:There are awesome oils from all varieties, and your tasting experience is the main thing that makes an olive oil good.
Choosing the best olive oil in the world will ALWAYS depend on these factors:
Age or season.
Personal factors, your own tastes and experiences.
If you notice, these data are what really matter in choosing an oil with respect to its label, but we’ll talk about them next week.
I hope you enjoyed the magnificent article I recommended from Marino Uceda. You can find more about his work in various books, publications and online, simply by searching for “COMPOSITIONS AND QUALITY OF EXTRA VIRGIN OILS. INFLUENCE OF VARIETY “.
I cooked this article as an opportunity to create more of a culture of olive oil through this medium.
I really believe that your opinion matters, and if you have something to say or add to this article, please leave a comment. If you’ve found it useful, share it with your digital circles.
Be olive oil my friend .