Olive Types

Mixed olives

colorful olives photo by Victor M. Vicente Selvas

Popular types of olive oils

extra virgin olive oil-usually the most untouched with the acid content at a minimal amount. This product is cold pressed and a cleaner less processed oil. This is where you get the full olive taste.

virgin oil oil- this is cold pressed as well, but since there are substances in the oil to help in the extraction process, it cannot be labeled as virgin. This is a milder tasting oil than extra virgin.

pure olive oil- this is a refined oil mixed with extra virgin olive oil. This produces a generally blander tasting product.

Popular olive types from around the world

Most of us know about black olives (or Mission olives). Here are a few more olive types you may or may not know about:

Manzanillo (you know, the ones usually stuffed with pimento, garlic or almonds)

Nicoise (the tiny French strong tasting olives)

Kalamata (the Greek black olives that are cured in red wine vinegar)

Sicilian (the large greenish brown olives that are mild but flavorful)

Picholine (French brine cured olives that have a pointy end….salty sweet and a firm flesh…one of my faves)

Then we have the more uncommon and lesser known olive types, but still tasty nonetheless! We have the Cerignola from Italy, the Arbequina from Spain (pictured above), the Lucques from France and the Taggiansca from Italy. There are definitely endless varieties of olives just waiting to be explored. Every region produces a different tasting olive, all due to the climate, soil, curing and seasoning methods. Whatever olive type you decide on or whichever olive variety becomes your favorite, you’ll no doubt reap from all the olive oil benefits. ¬†Go on, get to your olive search …..

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