Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently asked questions

Can I cook with your olive oil?

This is a common misconception and one of the most frequently asked questions we receive. In fact, HIGH QUALITY EVOO is the most nutritional oil to cook with and new studies have shown that using an evoo high in phenols (antioxidants) for cooking & baking applications leads to a significant reduction in oxidation and the inhibition of harmful byproducts over other vegetable oils or olive oils lower in phenolic (antioxidant) content! The majority of the oils we offer are high in phenolic content, high in oleic acid (the healthful MUFA) and low in FFA (free fatty acid). There is a direct correlation between FFA and smoke point! The lower the FFA, the more the oil can be heated before it reaches its smoke point. However, there is some truth to this misconception. Low grade and the vast majority of the olive oil available in the grocery store, is relatively unstable under high heat and we wouldn’t advise cooking with it.

What is the most important thing I should know before purchasing an olive oil?

The single most important piece of information for the consumer to determine is the harvest date of an olive oil. Olive oil should be treated like fresh fruit juice, as it is highly perishable. It is always healthier and more flavorful when consumed close to its crush date. As an oil ages, it tends to lose a lot of the magnificent health and flavor properties that make it such an enjoyable product. It is common practice for grocery store oils to have a “best by date”. This is an arbitrary date, determined by the producer/bottler and it really does not provide the consumer with the information they need. On a side note, never buy oil in clear glass or plastic, as olive oil is highly susceptible to UV degradation!

What is “first cold-press”?

This is an outdated and overused term in the industry. It often leads to more confusion on the side of the consumer. “Cold Pressing” is referring to the temperature at which the olive paste is malaxed, in order to extract oil. Like almost every other aspect of the industry, these claims are unregulated and loosely applied to almost every oil on the grocery store shelf. In order for an olive oil to be considered, “Cold Pressed”, it must be processed below 86 degrees Fahrenheit. Many producers choose to process their oils at higher temperatures, in order to extract more oil from the olive paste. However, as the temperature of the paste is increased during the milling process, the quality and integrity of the oil is jeopardized. Our average production temperature is around 70 degrees Fahrenheit. As a result of processing at a cooler temperature, our yield goes down but our quality goes through the roof! In addition to heat, the amount of time the olive paste spends in the Malaxer, has a significant impact on the finished product. Over processing, yields more oil but also hurts the quality of the finished product.

Is your EVOO certified organic?

Sometimes we carry certified organic extra virgin olive oils and infused olive oils. The label will indicate if the oil is certified organic or not.

Is your olive oil certified Kosher?

Almost all of our olive oils are Kosher U Certified. Unfortunately, none of our aged balsamic vinegar is Kosher. Please see our certifications page for more information by clicking here

Do you make all of the oil yourselves?

Our distributor (Veronica Foods) produce many of the extra virgins, as well as, all of the infused oil and infused vinegar themselves. Any oil that they do not produce themselves, they make sure to personally source and assist in the production. They have strict standards and form close partnerships with independent farms all over the world. They often pay a premium to buy the fruit on the tree and have it pressed and processed to meet their strict quality standards.

Should I refrigerate my EVOO?

There is a great debate going on over refrigerating and freezing extra virgin olive oil. We recommend storing your oil in a cool dark place. Although, freezing an extra virgin has been known to extend its shelf life, constantly changing the temperature (for immediate consumption) can mess with the chemistry and create condensation on the inside or the bottle. Absolutely, never purchase or store olive oil in clear glass or plastic, unless you plan on using it within a week.

How long does EVOO last?

This question completely depends on the quality of the oil you are starting with, as well as the conditions in which it is being stored. We have seen well made, excellent oils, hold up over a year! However, we suggest using your oil within a year of the day it was crushed. We also urge customers to consume the bottle within 3-4 months from opening. Yet, in this industry, there are always exceptions to this rule. The good news is, our distributor harvests from two hemispheres, giving our customers a unique opportunity to enjoy the freshest oil in the world, year around!

My throat burns after tasting some of your EVOO. Why does that happen?

All extra virgin olive oil should have at least a slight burning sensation on the end. In reality it is a “healthy burn”. One of the main health benefits associated with fresh extra virgin olive oil are polyphenols. The higher the phenol content, the more pepper and the more bitterness the oil will have. For most people, bitterness and pepper is an acquired taste. However, we see people gradually move up the intensity ladder and eventually begin to enjoy robust oils.

What is the difference between fused and infused oil?

We carry both fused and infused olive oils. When an oil is fused, this means the olives were crushed with the fruit or vegetable, simultaneously. Fused oils tend to have wonderfully true, rich flavors! Our blood orange, lemon and Chili pepper oils are fused! Another term for fused oil is Agrumato. Conversely, when an oil is infused, the all-natural, organic flavors, are added to the oil after the olives have been crushed.

What is the difference between your Extra Virgin Olive Oil and the stuff I buy at the store?

Our products are Ultra Premium Certified - The highest standard for EVOO in the world! They are tested by the most credentialed olive oil lab in the world - voted #1 in accuracy and proficiency by ACOS, the most prestigious oil society in the world. Our EVOO's are certified as ultra premium 14 months from the date of the crush, representing the strictest "BEST IF USED BY DATE" in the industry. Our EVOO's are certified to have no less than 130 PPM phenolic (antioxidant) content at the time of the crush, as measured by the most accurate testing method in the world. They also have the highest chemical standard in the world which includes DAGs and PPP - the most advanced testing methods in use which ensure freshness and authenticity. As well as ultra traceability from tree to bottle including country of origin, crush date and chemical analysis as measured at the time of the crush.

What are the health benefits of Extra Virgin Olive Oil?

Reducing the risk of cancer – The polyphenols in olive oil reduce cancer risks by lowering inflammation and cellular proliferation. In addition, the vitamins and antioxidants in olive oil have been shown to combat the free radicals associated with various forms of cancer. Reducing the risk of heart attack – Olive oil lowers the levels of total blood cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol and triglycerides, but does not alter the levels of HDL-cholesterol. These effects have contributed to the low incidence of heart failure in countries where olive oil is the principal fat consumed. Reducing belly fat – Olive oil helps the body to metabolize fat and sugar in an effective way so that the fat does not accumulate on the abdomen. The addition of olive oil to your diet changes the metabolism of your body so that you will start to burn belly fat more quickly.

Whats the difference from your balsamic vinegars and the stuff I buy at the store?

All true Balsamic Vinegars are made from a white Tebbiano or Lambrusco grape must, which is the freshly pressed fruit juice that contains the skins, seeds, and stems of the grapes. Our dark and white Balsamic Vinegars are of the highest quality and are made in Modena, Italy from only these grapes. We refer to our dark balsamic as, “Traditional Style Condimento, Aged up to 18 years.” The grape must is cooked over an open wood fire and is cooked down to the same consistency, density and dry solid extracts. The wood-fire-cooked grape must is then put directly into aged, fired wood barrels. The barrels as well as the product they once contained, add character and complexity in flavor to the must. The probiotics wild yeast and acetic bacteria colonize it and eventually raise the acidity. It slowly ages in this manner and turns into “vinegar” over the up to 18 year aging process. By Italian law, it must then be tested for quality by measuring many specific criteria, such as, the dry extract solids. Our condimento’s very low acidity of 4.5% is a function of the grape must being naturally cooked down, condensed and aged without the addition of thickeners and sweeteners. All of our vinegars are Non-GMO Project Verified.

What are the health benefits of Balsamic Vinegar?

Aiding in weight loss – According to studies, balsamic vinegar is a source of calcium, iron, manganese and potassium, which improve the body’s functioning and weight loss abilities. Low in calories, it also helps to curb the body’s appetite and prevents overeating. Regulates blood sugar – Balsamic vinegar is low on the glycemic index, providing slower and more controlled changes to glucose levels. It can improve insulin sensitivity for diabetics, allowing for an easier regulation of blood sugar and reducing unpleasant side effects from diabetes. Aids in digestion – The polyphenols in balsamic vinegar boost the activity of pepsin, an enzyme that breaks protein down into smaller amino acids that can be more easily absorbed by the body. Effective amino acid absorption enables the body to utilize it for cell building, repair and other body maintenance work. Plus lots more!