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Timeless Treasures of Puglia: Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Embark on a journey through time and discover the rich history of olive cultivation and high-quality olive oil production, with Apulia Tours! Puglia, located in the southern part of Italy, boasts a long history of producing olives and premium olive oil. The cultivation of olives and the production of olive oil are integral parts of the region's culture and economy. Delve into the millennia-old history of olive oil production in Puglia, dating back to when the first olive trees were planted by the Greeks and Etruscans. During the Roman era, olive oil production in Puglia greatly increased and Pugliese olive oil became highly sought after throughout the Roman Empire. Explore the diverse varieties of olives grown in Puglia, including the Ogliarola, with its round shape and dark green color, the Coratina, with its elongated shape and dark green color, the Peranzana, with its round shape and light green color, and the Cellina di Nardò, with its elongated shape and dark green color.

The production of the local extra-virgin olive oil involves several key steps, each of which contributes to the quality and flavor of the final product. Here's a detailed look at the process:

  1. Harvesting: In Puglia, olives are typically harvested by hand, either by shaking the branches or using a special rake-like tool. The timing of the harvest is critical, as it affects the flavor, aroma, and nutritional value of the oil. In Puglia, olives are typically harvested between October and December, when they have reached their optimal level of ripeness.

  2. Washing: After harvesting, the olives are thoroughly washed to remove any dirt, leaves, or twigs. This is an important step, as any impurities can affect the flavor and quality of the oil.

  3. Grinding: The next step is to grind the olives into a paste. This can be done using traditional stone mills or modern centrifugation methods. The grinding process releases the oil from the olive's cells, making it available for extraction.

  4. Malaxation: After grinding, the paste is left to stand for a period of time, usually between 30 minutes and two hours, to allow the oil droplets to coalesce. This step is known as malaxation.

  5. Extraction: The oil is then separated from the paste using a centrifuge. This is a mechanical process that spins the paste at high speed, causing the oil to separate from the water and other solid components. The oil is then collected and stored in tanks.

  6. Filtering: The final step is to filter the oil to remove any impurities and sediment. This is usually done using a special filter press or by gravity, without the use of heat or chemicals. The result is a high-quality extra-virgin olive oil, with its distinct flavor, aroma, and nutritional properties.

The traditional methods of harvesting and producing olive oil have been passed down for generations, and the region remains one of the largest producers of premium olive oil in the world. Whether you're a seasoned connoisseur or simply interested in learning about this rich cultural tradition, a tour of Puglia's olive oil production is a must-see experience. Taste the best olive oil in the world, produced in Puglia using traditional methods passed down for generations. Puglia's olive oil production continues to be a vital part of the region's economy and its contribution to Italy's and the world's enogastronomic industry is recognized and appreciated globally.

The Galantino Oil Mill in Bisceglie is a well-known producer of high-quality olive oil in the region. They use traditional methods to extract oil from the olives, ensuring that the oil retains its rich flavor and health benefits. The mill is located in the heart of Bisceglie, and is surrounded by groves of olive trees. Visitors to the mill can take a tour to see the oil-making process in action, and taste the delicious oil for themselves. The Galantino Oil Mill is an important part of the local economy and culture, and is a must-visit for anyone interested in the art of making olive oil. Book a tour with Apulia Tours today and experience the rich history and culture of olive oil production in Puglia! Contact us on Instagram as @apuliatours or visit our website to reserve your spot.

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