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.



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.



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.


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)

Autumn is the season for pumpkins


Pumpkins have a high antioxidant content, including alpha-carotene, beta-carotene and beta-cryptoxanthin as well as a high level of vitamin A (which strengthens your immune system) – perfect October food to guide you through the season change.


If you’re looking for a wonderful pumpkin soup recipe, I can really recommend this one from Ottolenghi


It’s a great recipe for November as we move in to saffron season.

Alternatively, this is also a family favourite for a cold day.  https://nourishmagazine.com.au/recipes/roasted-pumpkin-soup-with-crispy-chickpeas/



One of our most loved pumpkin lunch recipes comes from Diana Henry.  She roasts the pumpkin and then serves with burrata and a hazelnut pesto.  Super seasonal and such wonderful flavour combinations.




And if you are looking for a sensational autumnal salad, we adapt Tom Hunt’s recipe from The Natural Cook where he combines with chickpeas, kale, pomegranate and a touch of tahini.


Serves 4-6
600g pumpkin, seeds removed and cut into large wedges about 3cm thick
Extra Virgin Olive Oil – we use Il Classico from De Carlo
150g kale
1 garlic clove, chopped
Seeds of ½ pomegranate
100g cooked chickpeas

For the dressing
1 tbsp tahini
1 garlic clove, crushed
A squeeze of lemon juice
2 tbsp water

Extra Virgin Olive Oil – we use Il Sincero from Marco Viola.


Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4.

Drizzle the pumpkin wedges with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Roast for around 30 minutes until slightly coloured and soft in the middle when pricked with a knife.


Strip the kale from its stalks.  Finely chop the stalks and roughly shred the leaves.  Wash thoroughly. Cook the stalks for 1 minute in a frying pan with olive oil and then add the leaves for a further minute.  Add the garlic and mix over the heat for a further minute.  Season and remove from the heat.


For the dressing mix the tahini, garlic, lemon juice and olive oil together then add in the water to form a smoother paste.  Add more water as needed until you have the consistency of double cream.


Layer all of the ingredients on a deep plate: the roasted pumpkin, the wilted kale and the chickpeas.  Scatter over the pomegranate seeds and the dressing just before serving.