Written By: Rosie Locks, Hazel, & Song Bird
As each of us became team members at The Sacred Olive, we were immersed in a new and intriguing world- one that delves deep into the intricacies of olive oil. Read on as we share a few valuable details!
1. What is the infusion/fusion process?
Fused means that the whole fruit is simultaneously crushed with the olives. This is known as the agrumato method. This method allows for a full-bodied flavoring of the fruit within the olive oil. The fused olive oils we carry in our store are citrus based, such as Persian Lime, Lemon, Blood Orange and Grapefruit.
Infused means that the extract of the herb or fruit is infused with pure, extra virgin olive oil. This process allows us to produce delicious flavored olive oils such as Basil, Garlic, Tuscan Herb, Herbes de Provence, Rosemary and Wild Mushroom & Sage.
Both our fused and infused olive oils come from privately owned small regional mills in Tunisia. This allows us to ensure quality, as we can monitor and trace our oils right to the groves from which they came. Our Tunisian mill, built in 1998, is conveniently located approximately 60 nautical miles from Sicily, allowing us to produce fresh fused and infused olive oil days after harvest.
2. Why do the extra virgin oils switch hemispheres?
As seasons change, so does the olive harvest. The ideal time to harvest olives is in the fall. So, in order to ensure quality, our oils only come from where the olive harvest is fresh.
During the northern hemisphere autumn, our extra virgin olive oils are sourced from Spain, Italy, Greece and California. During the southern hemisphere autumn (northern hemisphere spring), the oils come from Chile, Peru, and Australia.
3. What are Polyphenols?
Polyphenols are a type of antioxidant that can be found in extra virgin olive oil. Some EVOO has a higher polyphenol count, bringing a strong peppery taste or a tingling sensation at the back of the throat. These sensations are those antioxidants in action!
The benefits of polyphenols include, but are not limited to the following:
They help fight against heart disease, high blood pressure and cholesterol
They can help prevent a stroke
Boost the body’s ability to defend against negative effects of aging, such as declining mental state
Research has shown their ability to prevent free radicals
***It takes at least two tablespoons a day for the benefits to really take effect in the body.
Next time you use your olive oil, you’ll have a new understanding of why this pantry staple is so appreciated!