Are you fussy about olive oil?

I usually buy what's cheapest and on special. I made a simple snack today - sliced tomato on unbuttered wholegrain toast - seasoned and a drizzle of olive oil. Have had a few more snacks during the day - probably more than I should have. MacKenzie Station Seed & Grain bread is the BEST! Anyway, I have looked at premium Olive Oil with it's premium price and wondered if I was missing much.

Chef_paora-tm, Feb 24, 4:48 pm

I use Village Press Olive Oil and have Lupi Extra light Olive Oil on hand for when I make crepes for example and when I don't want a strong flavour.

Chef_carlosjackal, Feb 24, 5:03 pm

Village Press is our staple olive oil, with Pam's extra virgin for frying and for storing homemade feta.

We have recently been given a tin of top quality Spanish cold pressed organic extra virgin olive oil and it is superb, peppery and grassy, and I am using it as a condiment with salads and vegetables.

Freshness is very important, so if you buy an expensive oil make sure it is fresh, and don't let it sit in the pantry growing stale.

Chef_davidt4, Feb 24, 5:23 pm

Village Press here too. Buy it on special.

Chef_bedazzledjewels, Feb 24, 5:45 pm

Can't stand the stuff.

Chef_lythande1, Feb 24, 6:45 pm

You can buy a lot of really superb local olive oils in Nelson. I'm sure this must be the same in Auckland. You take your own bottle along to the local market and growers will fill it there with lovely fresh oil and it costs only about the same as the mass produced stuff you get at the supermarket. I wouldn't cook in it as the flavour is too intense but it is superb for dipping, drizzling and dressing. Apparently a lot of the oil we are sold in supermarkets is rancid.

Chef_toffeey, Feb 24, 10:15 pm

when i was cooking in the 80's- mid 90's we didn't use olive oil. even when i worked in some top restaurants i cannot remember ever using it,, about 6 years ago we went to a Italian restaurant and they served olive oil with there bread, i cannot recall how it tasted but if it was no good i would of remembered, last year i saw some extra virgin olive oil on special , $15 a small bottle so i bought a bottle, i was told it's one of the best extra virgin olive oils on the market, it tasted bitter and horrible. , i have looked in a few shops to see if they have olive oils to try but i have not found any shops that do that yet.

Chef_aktow, Feb 25, 2:21 am

I'm not tremendously fussy. We use Lupi generally, except for when we're given fancy ones as gifts - then we thoroughly enjoy those until they're gone.

I can absolutely tell the difference between the price ranges, but still buy the more affordable one.

Chef_drommy, Feb 25, 7:27 am

I use Lupi organic, ruth pretty recommended it, that's good enough for me

Chef_martine5, Feb 25, 7:23 pm

I like Village Press Barnea variety - I don't really like the peppery grassy flavours of NZ oil though as I grew up on Cretan oil which is quite different. Mum used to bring back gallons of it when visiting our rellies each summer as it was much cheaper than what we could get (if we could get) in UK at the time. However this week we were given 4 different olive oil varieties from a local grower here in Manawatu as hubby helped them pick their crop a few months ago. One or two of them are way too strong for me though so I will let him use. I worry that imported oils have been tampered with or 'cut' with something else and we were told of this at a cooking school in Tauranga - not sure if it is true or not? I do like to support NZ olive oil producers though but only if I can afford it., Feb 25, 9:52 pm

Yep. I only buy the extra light stuff as otherwise itss too strong for us. I try specialty stuff from the m arket for bread dips now and again.

Chef_wendalls, Feb 25, 10:20 pm

New Zealand Extra Virgin Olive Oil is fresh, tasty and good for you. If those qualities are what you are after then look to buy at your local Farmers Market or specialty food store. Look for the red OliveMark which signifies that it is certified as New Zealand Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

Chef_gayle6, Feb 26, 2:10 am

Me neither

Chef_lilyfield, Feb 26, 7:50 am

Village Press and my new fav a bottle of Spy Valley oil which is very good. Use coconut oil and rice bran for other things

Chef_barbs77, Feb 26, 8:02 am

Never buy olive oil in clear glass bottles, it needs to be protected from the light

Chef_barbs77, Feb 26, 8:03 am

Ditto for extra virgin., Feb 26, 8:43 am


Chef_kaddiew, Feb 26, 8:47 am

A lot of the cheap Spanish and Italian olive oils on sale here are old and off imho - a bit rancid. When you compare the taste with freshly pressed local oils - you may just get a shock! We abandoned imported oils a couple of years ago after doing a taste test comparing Spanish and Italian olive oil we had in the cupboard ( ex supermarket), with a locally produced one bought at a farmers market - the difference was astonishing. I suggest everyone should do this test. Anyway, supporting Kiwi farmers and producers should be a way of life - if you have enough money as often it costs a bit more. I've recently been into roasted NZ grown hazelnuts - fabulous when compared with the stale imported rubbish stocked by supermarkets. yes you pay more - but you get what you pay for sometimes.

Chef_willyow, Feb 26, 8:51 am

And if you check on TM you will find a number of local growers advertising their EVOO at a very reasonable price. Just make sure that you check it has been certified by Olives New Zealand as EVOO and it should have the red OliveMark on the bottle to signify this.

Chef_gayle6, Feb 26, 9:42 am

Well I splashed out and bought The Village Press - Manzanillo Olives. I'm not that impressed - it has a strong bitter taste. I will stick with those cheap rancid ones - Lupi & Olivani, when they are on special at half the price of The Village Press bottles.

Chef_paora-tm, Mar 4, 10:12 pm

Village Press Barnea

Chef_twindizzy, Mar 5, 7:38 am

This one. Very mild and not at all bitter and grassy. Just depends on the variety of olive I suppose., Mar 5, 8:15 am

Yes. It absolutely depends on the olive variety. I usually go to the markets and buy direct from growers. They always have a selection of their oils available for tasting and it is incredible just how different each variety is. Some are hot and peppery and some are mild. I like the stronger flavoured oils because they go well with salads, which is what I usually use them on.

Chef_buzzy110, Mar 5, 9:21 am

Fresh peppery "green" tasting olive oils like that can be a bit startling if you taste them undiluted, but they come into their own when made into a vinaigrette for a salad or when used as a condiment and trickled over cooked vegetables or a warm Italian-style soup like Minestrone.

Chef_davidt4, Mar 5, 9:49 am

Yep, I did find that but then when I use cheaper oils in the same way, I'm not sure I notice any difference apart from paying more.

Chef_paora-tm, Mar 5, 11:08 am

Village Press Franitoto is the one I prefer, find Barnea and Manzanillo taste different and are slightly stronger in flavour. Only use in dressings or for dip with dukkha.

Chef_cgvl, Mar 5, 11:58 am

During my google searching I came across sites with warnings about some oils being less healthy than others and the benefits of dark bottles for storage. Have you seen and do you believe any of that? Surely if dark bottles were better, everyone would use them.

Chef_paora-tm, Mar 5, 12:06 pm

They cloud up in lighter bottles. Pretty easy to spot on the shelves.

Chef_twindizzy, Mar 5, 12:44 pm

Chef_davidt4, Mar 5, 1:57 pm

Village press here too. I don't like manzanillo but I live the other varieties. We always use Frantoio for vinaigrettes and salads. It's clean and fresh and fruity.

Chef_gaspodetwd, Mar 5, 8:22 pm

Oh really, please tell me more. Where when etc.

Chef_paora-tm, Mar 5, 8:32 pm

I chose that one because it said 'Dressings' on the label. Anyway I made a Balsamic Vinaigrette tonight and all is good . wonderful, in fact. I'm kicking myself because I've never dared to use the Balsamic vinegar which has been sitting in the pantry for a long long long time - OMG, the delight I have been missing out on! I shall never consume a commercial salad dressing ever again.

Chef_paora-tm, Mar 5, 8:44 pm

If you think that's good, try raspberry vinegar to make a dressing.


Chef_gaspodetwd, Mar 5, 8:47 pm

Balsamic is AMAZING. my go-to salad dressing is a drizzle of balsamic, a drizzle of olive oil - usually the cheap stuff! - salt and pepper.

Love balsamic vinegar.

Edited to correct spell-age.

Chef_drommy, Mar 5, 10:54 pm

Well, I bought the Village Press Frantoio today and can't say I notice too much difference to the Manzanillo apart from being quite peppery. Nevermind, I only really notice the bitterness when tasting it on its own. My doctor will no doubt be pleased that I'm using olive oil more and other fats less.

Chef_paora-tm, Mar 6, 4:17 pm

I should have asked before I went shopping. Who sells it?

Chef_paora-tm, Mar 6, 6:12 pm

Yes. I love Lusatori olive oils and Seresin's olive oils. Both from Marlborough.

Chef_denzie, Mar 6, 9:27 pm

Cripes, at $35 a bottle you would need to love it after paying for it!

Chef_paora-tm, Mar 6, 11:02 pm

I've been to Farmer's markets up and down the country. Check out your local one. Any reputable olive grower who is selling their own oil will provide tastings.

Chef_buzzy110, Mar 7, 12:23 pm


Chef_bev00, Mar 8, 12:29 am

This makes for an interesting read.I see some are in our supermarkets.

Chef_dreamers, Mar 8, 8:37 am

Fresh is best I was told so I always check the dates on the bottle of the extra virgin oil. Village Press is the brand in the cupboard at the moment.

Chef_terraalba, Mar 8, 10:27 am

Fascinating! More good reason to buy NZ olive oil. I noticed in the supermarket the other day that Village Press is now marketing a cheaper olive oil made from a blend of NZ and Australian oils. It might we worth checking out for anyone who is on a budget.

Chef_davidt4, Mar 8, 11:01 am

They all cloud up when they're cold - you just can't see it in a dark bottle

Chef_sarahb5, Mar 8, 11:57 am

Haven't bought any olive oil for 5+ years. Priced itself off our shopping list.

Chef_eaglefan, Mar 8, 12:23 pm

Tried a real freshly made olive oil recently. felt that I was in the middle of a freshly mown green grass paddock, simply lovely. Quality is always defined with prices and a lot of cheaper ones can be nasty, even thrown out one lot. Also be wary at supermarkets, e.g. says they are the cheapest yet sell two brands that are very cheap in quality and should had been binnned, couple of others are okay and make a good regular buys. Unsure on other Supermarkets though. I have about 3 or 4 various ones regularly using them accordingly as I want them for.

Chef_valentino, Mar 8, 12:38 pm

Of course they that is because a good olive oil solidifies when cold. They melt again when brought to room temperature.

Chef_buzzy110, Mar 8, 1:41 pm

I know .

Chef_sarahb5, Jan 11, 10:46 pm

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