Denocciolato: What’s the Story?
The Jury is very much out on the topic of denocciolato (pitted) olive oils. It’s pretty interesting to decipher the arguments on both sides as we try to figure out what makes an olive oil have a longer shelf life, what influences the acidity level or polyphenol content for example. The more people I ask about it, the more opinions come back.
To give some detail here, pitting olives before pressing them has become a bit of a statement of quality in the past couple of years, those who do it (obvs) swear by it and they ought to, because it’s another laborious step in the complex process of pressing top quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil. If you have never tried one, I suggest you seek out one of the monocultivars from Fèlsina, both Moraiolo and Pendolino are particularly impressive http://www.felsina.it/en/prodotti/moraiolo-oil-felsina/.
The fact I can’t get my head around however is why one would want to give olive oil the potential to age in the same way as a wine? To me, there is nothing more delicious than new season olive oil, it’s full of raw goodness that you can genuinely taste and feel. Why would you ever wish to age it beyond the release of the next harvest therefore? Is it just a point of difference to make you believe it’s worth more?
Throughout my career in wine and now my adventures in olive oil, my belief is that everything goes back to what is in the glass… senses are your most valuable friend in determining quality. If the denocciolato oils I had tasted were better than those with stones, I would be listing them for you. Don’t worry, I will continue tasting them and keeping an eye on this subject for you to ensure you get the very best.