LOCATION AND CLIMATE

 

As you might expect, olives grown in cooler areas where there is more moisture (rainfall and dew) exhibit leaner, more restrained characteristics.  This doesn’t however mean that great oil can now be made in Iceland – you need a minimum amount of sunshine to make your Extra Virgin Olive Oil taste remarkable, similarly to tomatoes or stone fruit.

Olive trees are sensitive to winter freeze (the Casaliva cultivar is more resistant to cold, hence being grown in the Garda region).  It is also easier to farm organically where the climate is more stable and less chemical sprays are required to keep the trees healthy.

OLIVE MATURITY

 

Here’s the thing – all olives are green.  When they become fully mature, they turn black.
Olive maturity at the time of harvest is a major factor in flavour and quality: olives harvested earlier (green olives) feature more bitter, grassy characteristics, with lower yields and with the highest anti-oxidant content.  The oil is a much more intense green colour and has a longer shelf-life.  In terms of production, milling can take longer with green olives (a longer malaxation - the action of slowly churning milled olives to release droplets of oil - is needed and can be more complicated) but the results are far superior!  Don’t choose olive oil from over mature fruit: it lacks all the potential goodness and flavour.

ATTENTION TO DETAIL IN GROVE AND MILL

 

People who care passionately about what they make and follow it personally every day have the capacity to create products with far higher quality, with integrity, and that taste of where they come from.  They are also able to do this by caring for the environment they inhabit.

FRANTOIO DI RIVA BOX

This box contains 6 bottles of extra virgin olive oil made exclusively by Frantoio di Riva from groves on the banks of lake Garda.

Frantoio di Riva, 46°PARALLELO green label x 3 bottles (50cl)
Frantoio di Riva, 46°PARALLELO organic white label x 1 bottle (50cl)
Frantoio di Riva, 46°PARALLELO blue label x 1 bottle (50cl)
Frantoio di Riva, ULIVA Garda Trentino DOP x 1 bottle (50cl)

Ajvar from Friuli

Ajvar Friuliano

Like almost everything in Friuli, its food is also a combination of influences from the different cultures that make up this stunning region. Here, Italian, Austrian and Slavic food mixes side by side. Ajvar, a typical dip from Friuli, feels strongly Slavic in character, but also deeply Italian.

INGREDIENTS

2 red peppers

1 large aubergine

1 clove of garlic

1tbs white wine vinegar

1/2 tbsp salt

1tbsp sugar

EVOO from Friuli.  We used Rozó from Frantoio Parovel.

METHOD

Char the peppers, by placing them under the grill or over the fire. When the skin has turned black, let them cool first, then de-skin and de-seed. Chop and set aside.

 

Cut the aubergine in two, score and pour a lot of EVOO on the flesh of each half. Put them back together, cover tightly in tin foil, then put in the over for 1 hour at 180°.

 

Scoop out the flesh of the aubergine put in a blender, together with the chopped peppers, the garlic, the oil, the vinegar, the salt and the sugar. Blitz to a paste.  Adjust seasoning (if the peppers are out of high season, you might want to add some extra sugar to take away any bitterness).

 

Cook on a low heat for about 15 minutes, to slightly reduce and concentrate.  Pour a little EVOO from Friuli, such as Parovel’s Rozó over the top.

 

Enjoy warm, with some flat bread or with roasted pork meat.