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The December 2018 harvest from Villa Montalbano Estate has produced another magnificent example of a first class, light, unfiltered Tuscan Extra Virgin Olive Oil. This single estates olives were handpicked in early December with great care to produce a wonderfully fresh, low acidity olive oil with bitterness and pepper in perfect harmony. We are lucky to have a Villa Montalbano Extra Virgin Olive Oil of such a high grade this year, as the production in 2018 was small.
How is it best used?
Tasting and using freshly pressed Extra Virgin Olive Oil is a treat that all should experience in life. Despite be a light olive oil, Villa Montalbano has a concentrated flavour. The amaro or pepper in the oil will kick your salads into life. The fibre of the olives create a velvety text to the start, as ther are still freely circulating in it from the milling process. The vivid green olive oil actually has an aroma of fresh olives or mown grass. Please be aware that this natural fibre will settle after time and can then be used for adding a little extra flavour into your cooking. A simple drizzle of this oil on a strong green leafed salad, with possibly a little cracked salt over the top, and you will have released a little magic. Pair with our stronger flavoured fruit vinegars, such Bramble Vinegar, Raspberry Vinegar, Tayberry Vinegar or Damson Vinegar for a refined and delicious dressing. Please be aware that stocks of this early oil are limited so it's first come first served!
How is this made?
Villa Montalbano is a privately owned Single Estate near Pistoia, roughly midway between Pisa and Florence, in the northern part of the Chianti region. Three ‘cultivars’ of olive are grown on the estate, Lecco, Frantoio and Murioli; the ratio of these varieties gives their oil its distinctive flavour and colour. The trees are hand pruned in the spring and the oil harvested in late October through to late December. The olives are hand picked with the help of local families, who are repaid generously with up to half of the picked crop. The oil is then taken to be milled that same day to prevent any degradation, at the local 'Frantoio' co-operative mill. The olives are pressed mechanically ensuring the Extra Virgin status of the oil is preserved. The required maximum acidity for Extra Virgin Oil is 0.8% but Villa Montalbano regularly produces an oil under 0.4%.