A whole bunch of information has come out regarding olive oil quality, and that many brands of “Extra Virgin Olive Oil” are in fact tainted with hazelnut oil, soybean oil, or some other cheap, inferior oil. This made me wonder about the quality of the brand I have stocked currently, Botticelli. I already knew enough about olive oil to look for one in a dark or tin bottle that helps prevent light and heat from oxidizing the delicate oil, so I have this 2 liter tin of Botticelli “Extra Virgin Olive Oil – First Cold Pressed.”
I couldn’t find anything incriminating or good about Botticelli online and it was not in the UC Davis Olive Center report. Here’s what I know about the oil:
- It solidifies in the fridge – this trick turns out not to work so well, though
- It is sold in a stainless steel container
- It was harvested in January, 2012, so I know it wasn’t sitting around a long time before I bought it (I got it months ago)
- The country of origin is Tunisia (despite the manufacturer’s website claiming that their olives come from Italy, Greece and Spain)
I decided to test it further on my own.
I followed Nancy Ash’s tasting advice and found the following…
- The color is a light gold-ish green, but supposedly color varies so much that it doesn’t really matter
- The scent is very mild and had a light fruity scent- it made me think of pear
- The taste was very smooth, I did not detect bitterness or a peppery taste in my throat
So… I still don’t know whether it’s legit or not, but if it is real, it’s probably made from low-grade olives since it lacks the bitterness. Next time I buy EVOO I will look for the brands that passed the test… surprisingly Costco’s Kirkland’s Signature organic EVOO was certified so I will probably end up buying that!