Ever since ancient times, the olive tree has represented the symbol of peace and prosperity, distinguishing itself for its longevity and the incredible fruit it produces; the olive. Olive picking is a tradition that is handed down from generation to generation for most families in Southern Tuscany, keeping up the production of one of the most popular product of this aerea, the extra virgin olive oil.
Each year, in the month of November, the olives are picked and then sent to the olive-mill where they are pressed, oozing out the new oil. The olive-presses start preparing for the celebration of the new oil, which is completely dedicated to extra virgin olive oil, one of the most representative gastronomical symbols of the lands of Southern Tuscany!
It’s a rich experience, full of autumn aromas. The colors and smells are accentuated as you stand in front of the lit fireplaces in the olive-presses, where you can follow the different phases of the process. You can also participate in the olive picking, done in the same simple, time honored way; lots of hard work with baskets and nets but also snack breaks, laughs, conviviality and entertainment for all!
At the end you can buy the fresh oil directly from the press and participate in the custom of tasting the oil on toasted bread; an event that is never missing from any respected olive press in Maremma.
What about the success of the extra virgin olive oil?
Southern tuscan extra virgin olive oil owes its success principally to the characteristics of the territory where it is cultivated, but also to the geographical difficulties that render the industrialization of the olive picking extremely difficult, therefore favoring hand picking. The climatic conditions of the territory should not be underestimated either, for the winter frost makes the farmers and agricultural enterprises look after their olive trees with maniacal dedication. Thus, they are able to produce an olive oil that has no equals. The quality of the extra virgin olive oil from Southern Tuscany also benefits from the early picking of the olive and its brief conservation. This allows its processing at low temperatures to be sped up.
The result is an extra virgin olive oil of the highest quality, with a delightful taste and very low acidity levels. It is best tasted on unsalted bread; in fact, the bruschetta with fresh oil is typical, a simple flavor to savor the slightly spicy taste of the freshly pressed oil as it evolves in the palate. Its particularity is a slightly bitter taste, an intense smell and a yellow/green color which make up its characteristics and strong personality!
And so, why not try this unique experience in Southern Tuscany? A fantastic opportunity for those who love good food, to know the olive oil culture and its traditions, taste the local delicacies, discover the traditional games and spend some unforgettable days in the magical setting of the olive-presses of Maremma!