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Cretan Olive Oil

Kansas City...
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Cretan Olive Oil

doing research online is useless, therefore I will ask you, the all-knowing Cretan Travel Community. knowing that things like food and drink are personal opinions, we have been told by other learned people that the olive oil of Sitia is the best. I have also been told by people in other forums that western Crete's olive oil is the best. so without answering that question, perhaps you can give me a few pointers. are there places you can go without driving all over the island to taste the various types of olive oil and make an personal choice. ok, we are driving all over the island, so then are there places to stop, factories or farms or shops where we can get the best value and maybe try the wares. I am aware of the Cretan Olive Oil Farm in Agios Nicholas, are there other places like that? Is it really simply a matter of trying ever single olive oil made by every single farmer on the island until we find something we like? I'm not joking, we will literally be driving from one side of the island to the other, west to east, east to west and along both the north and south shores. There will be no places that we can't go on this trip, so please, give me your advise, and I remain as always, your travel buddy.

brent.

Surrey, United...
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1. Re: Cretan Olive Oil

Hi Brent

For me it's all down to personal taste - so try the olive oil and see what you think - we don't purchase olive oil in any shops but tend to buy or be given olive oil from friends in various locations across the island - you will find many tavernas and bars do sell their own home produced olive oil and you must have seen on your last visit the small road side stalls selling Olive Oil, Raki, Honey etc which again is all home produced ....so to answer your question, I don't have a specific preference I just buy what I like :-)

Edited: 10 January 2017, 02:05
London, United...
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2. Re: Cretan Olive Oil

There's no answer to this question: it's like asking what the best wine is. Olive oil is just as complex as wine, and there are just as many criteria for judging it. The crucial thing is to know what kind of olive oil you like. All Cretan olive oil is of a good standard, but the oils from different areas are different, because the climate, the trees, and the techniques of making oil are different.

Sitia olive oil has somehow gained the reputation of being "the best", and it has certainly been hyped. Whether or not you think it is the best depends on your own taste and preferences. Sitia oil is a mild, gentle oil. It's good, but it's the "best" for you only if that's the kind of oil you like. If you prefer a stronger, more peppery oil, you might prefer the oil from the Apokoronas area. And there are others. You'll find that most are available in the supermarkets.

It also depends on what you intend to use an oil for: a strong-tasting oil that is perfect for cooking may be too strong - for your taste - in a salad dressing. If you use olive oil for both purposes, then you probably want more than one.

The oil you like best may well be the one you were given by the owner of a hotel you stayed in in a place you liked - it will certainly come with the best memories.

A couple of the stalls in the Chania market have a good selection of oils, and the owners are knowledgeable about what they sell, so there's no need to go around the country tasting oil everywhere unless that's what you want to do. I'm sure that would be fun, though!

Happy oil-shopping.

Edited: 10 January 2017, 02:53
Kansas City...
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3. Re: Cretan Olive Oil

Excellent!

Sissi, Greece
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4. Re: Cretan Olive Oil

Hi

you can try here

http://www.cretanoliveoilfarm.com/

Kansas City...
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5. Re: Cretan Olive Oil

Yes, I mentioned that place, I was wondering if they only had one kind of Olive Oil, or from all over the island. We'll be staying in Agios Nicholas for an evening and maybe run by their on our way to Sitia.

Chania Prefecture...
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for Almyrida, Crete
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6. Re: Cretan Olive Oil

Hi Brent,

Probably my last ever TA post, so glad to make it a good one, for an inquisitive traveller!

My recommendation to you would be a morning's trip:

1 - tour of Terra Creta olive mill, near Tavronitis, heading West towards Kissamos. A very interesting tour of their super-modern plant, where their oil is all about high quality, modern methods, accuracy, followed by guided tastings (pre-book online)

2 - Just down the road is Vouves, purportedly the oldest olive tree in the world, whose branches are used at the Olympics, with a super little museum & a nice taverna for a drink/ snack.

3 - Tour of BioLea olive mill, just up a little into the mountains, an organic, traditional stone-pressed mill, tours & tasting by appointment

It's a great, interesting & beautiful morning out.

Their oil is regarded as some of the best, the taste is subjective of course, but the 'good stuff' (all we use in Crete),single estate, single pressing, extra virgin will have an acidity of 0.4 or lower. 0.2 is thought healthiest & best for salads. But strangely oil is not usually recorded with acidity level when commercially bottled for export. Me, as a resident - I use either of these companies oils, or a local one from a friend that costs me E4 a litre & is delivered in water bottles (bad way to store it, needs to be in the dark)!

Happy travels

Rethymnon, Greece
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for Crete
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7. Re: Cretan Olive Oil

Hi

There are three types of olive trees on the island. The lowest acidity is produced by the ones called "Koroneikes" but the taste is of course subjective. The other types tend to have more acidity in their olive. Most of Cretans agree that a mixture of 2 types of olive oil is the best as long as it is less than a 1 degree.

The taste also varies, depending by the time between the production and you, tasting it.

In the beginning it has a more fruity taste, and later on it becomes more oily.

Sissi, Greece
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8. Re: Cretan Olive Oil

Hi

You can cook with olive oil between 0.3 acidity and 1.2 acidity but for salads, feta, Fava, koukia, and all different fresh sauces with oil and lemon or vinegar etc the oil must be between 0.3acidity and 0.8 acidity.

The olive oil between 1.2 acidity and 2.0 acidity is not bad but sometimes you get the feeling of a slight bitterness.

The good olive oil has a lovely green colour and the best way to taste it is to a drink a small sip, if you feel it agreeably the oil is enought good for you!

It's not a legend that Cretan olive oil is one of the best worldwide!

Edited: 10 January 2017, 17:58
Kansas City...
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9. Re: Cretan Olive Oil

ha, I love you guys, can't wait to come back to Crete! Thanks so much!

Crete
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10. Re: Cretan Olive Oil

JWugg

If it is your last TA post, I'll be sorry about that. I've enjoyed reading what you've written over the years & will be sad to see you go.

Jackie