Food lovers, Chefs and Connoisseurs tend to agree that some of the most flavourful and highest quality oils come from the region of Tuscany in Italy. Tuscany itself produces numerous regional oils, each with unique characteristics and levels of quality.
Frantoio olives are small to medium size (2 to 3 grams) and oval in shape. The olives have a pleasant nutty flavour when pickled. When mature, the fruit are coloured purple-black, but at the preferred harvest time for oil production, they are green and purple-green. The highly noted and acclaimed Frantoio oil is of fruity character, aromatic and of leading quality, and it has become a symbol of Tuscany and is known as “liquid gold”.
Villa Pileggi olives are hand picked while still attached to the branches of the trees and before reaching complete ripeness. Growing olives in a cool climate such as Gisborne, gives a more intense flavour as olives ripen slower in cooler climates. Our trees are pruned to the traditional “vaso aperto” form, which stands for “open vase” by family members.
Just for interest, in Tuscany, Italy, an olive oil processing factory is also called a ‘Frantoio’.
Here's a useful hint if you have an olive tree or two...