TOP PICK OF THE WEEK: Domenica Fiore Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
A business titan from Vancouver and an olive grower from Italy share a passion for creating great organic extra virgin olive oil
In 2010 they secure an estate in the rolling hills of Umbria, a region known for exceptional soil for olive groves: Olive oil production that dates back to Etruscan* times.
Overlooking the medieval village of Orvieto, they set out to nurture the groves.
Canadian Frank Giustra, who loves to cook and uses a lot of olive oil, fell in love with the land, and its promise, and purchased the surrounding orchards in 2010. He named it after his Italian mother, Domenica Fiore.
An Orvietano preservationist, Cesare Bianchini, joined the team to contribute his expertise in producing great Umbrian olive oils. He oversees all farming and olive oil production.
In fact, Domenica Fiore controls all aspects of the process: cultivation, milling, storage, packaging and sales. This allows you to know when the olives in your bottle were harvested, milled and bottled, along with the values of their chemical constituency.
The company prides itself in bringing you the freshest olive oil possible, bottling the oils within four hours of harvesting. Using state-of-the-art nitrogen sealed 18/10 stainless steel bottles—a rarity even among the finest oils—enables the preservation of extremely high antioxidants levels and polyphenol counts.
Domenica Fiore produces five different blends:
How to choose? Start with whatever pops out at you; then try another, and another.
There are two sizes, 250 ml and 500 ml; prices range from $ 21.95 to $ 39.95.
Unlike the other four which are bottled within hours, the Riserva is allowed to rest for four months, where it acquires even more layers of complexity and is ideal for situations where the nuances of the oil will shine.
In addition to the conventional ideas, here’s an opportunity to display its breed: Domenica Fiore oils as a topping for vanilla ice cream is an exquisite experience.
Organically grown, Domenica Fiore is the essence of Slow Food: delicious food created with care, grown and harvested with methods that have a positive impact on the land and ecosystems.
Every step of production is slow and deliberate. It’s not about speed or quantity: It’s all about quality and what helps the olives show their best.
Unlike many EVOO producers, Domenica Fiore harvests olives that are in the early stages of ripening. Although these olives yield less oil than ripe ones, they possess an incredibly high concentration of polyphenols along with very low acidity.
Are there are other superlatives to say about an olive oil? We don’t think so.
The oils consistently win awards at international competitions.
In a category where there are so many entrants with “artisan” credentials, that says a lot.
What could be a better gift: delicious, healthful, environmentally sustainable, beautifully packaged: Domenica Fiore is something everyone can use and appreciate.
The line is certified organic and certified kosher.
*The Etruscans were a wealthy and powerful people of ancient Italy. They inhabited the area corresponding roughly to Tuscany, western Umbria and northern Lazio, and were roughly contemporaneous with the founding of Rome, to the south. At the conclusion of the Roman–Etruscan Wars, in the 4th century B.C.E., the Etruscans were assimilated into the Roman Republic [source].
†Stainless steel is the best material for preserving olive oil’s nutritional and flavor characteristics.