Awards: New York International Olive Oil Competition - Gold Medal, Los Angeles International Olive Oil Competition - Gold Medal
This is a Medium extra virgin olive oil with lots of green fruit flavors. We found nice aroma of green grass and flavors of green tea and artichoke. The oil is balanced in level of fruitiness with medium strong bitterness and pungency. It has enough fruit, bitterness, and pungency to stand up to both raw and cooking applications.
Aroma - Green grass
Flavor - Green tea and artichoke
Bitterness - Medium
Pungency - Medium
Coratina - COOC tasting panel noted green olive, herbaceus, pine and buttery flavors. Pamela notices a slow apple pie spice burn at the finish, typical of past years. Polyphenol rating 342
Overall, the oils this year are lower in polyphenol level than last year. Partly due to the amount of water they got, which mill they used, and how ripe the fruit was when harvested. They harvested them somewhat riper than last year, and you can see that in the increase in ripe fruit characteristics as well as phenol ratings. All oils are higher in fruit and pungency than in bitterness. They detect little bitterness in the oils. All the oils are rated medium in robustness by COOC.
About the Producer:
Stuart Littell and Pamela Marvel are partners in life and in business. When Pamela prepared to make good on a life-long dream –to live in the country as she had growing up on a dairy farm in Wisconsin–. Stuart was a full backer and supporter. Pamela wanted to be an active participant in rural life too, a traditional farmer who grew crops, nurtured the soil and improved the environment. After some deliberation, they decided to look for the ideal place to locate a small olive orchard, where they could produce their own olive oil. In early 2008 they bought a 20 acre farm in Capay Valley, about 35 miles west of Sacramento. It was just an alfalfa field.
Stuart and Pamela have a set of shared values that have guided their work on the farm. Pamela comes from a family of Norwegian and German farmers, some of whom immigrated to the Midwest in the 1800s. Good stewardship of the land was important to these farmers, including her parents, who set a fine example of good farming practices and hard work. Stuart’s Scottish grandparents helped manage national parks in the Sierras for decades. His family has a deep affection for nature, and a strong interest in caring for the environment. It was natural, therefore, for Stuart and Pamela to farm organically, to use good conservation practices, to develop wildlife habitat, to use native species of plants for habitat and cover crops, and in general to try to live a life respectful of nature.
Together they have made good progress on the farm: there are now 1400 olive trees on 8 acres. Coratina, Picual, Pendalino, Itrana, Barnea and Nocellera varietals have been planted. Hedgerows of native trees, shrubs, flowers for birds and pollinators are thriving. Dozens of shade trees have been planted around the farmstead. Drip irrigation has been installed throughout. In the fall of 2015 they planted the remaining 9 acres to double the number of olive trees planted, with some new varieties added for more depth and complexity in the oil that is produced.
Their farm is located in Capay Valley about 80 miles northeast of San Francisco. It has a great climate and good clay loam soil for growing olives. Their first trees were planted in 2008 and they enjoyed their first harvest of Coratina olives in November 2010. In fall 2018 they celebrated their Nineth harvest. They are proud to have their oil certified extra virgin by the California Olive Oil Council and certified organic by CCOF.