Olive oil press - tour with lunch
Crete is the biggest producer of olive oil in Greece, not only in terms of quantity but also quality, as a result of a unique combination of the soil, climatic environment and the obstinate use of traditional means to harvest. For Cretans, olive oil is life, the universal panacea that cures disease, ensures longevity and is used abundantly in almost any dish.
We visit a local traditional olive press company where the locals take their olives every year after harvest to be cold pressed and turned into the liquid gold of such purity, it generally has the lowest acidity in the Mediterranean.
Our exclusive guided tour starts from the beginning with the olive tree famed for its quality of oil known as the "Koroneiki" variety where we will see a demonstration of harvesting, the step of lovingly removing the olives to go to press in October or November depending on the season.
We continue through the olive mill where all the careful production steps are described thoroughly by the resident experts so you can see exactly what goes on in each stage from tree to your table!
The last part of the tour is the bottling unit, where we can taste different extra virgin olive oils, of different quality category or certification. Little secrets on storage, best use and healthy attributes will be described in order for to to fully appreciate this premium staple food of Crete.
The Mill also has a shop where you can purchase some of the products they produce, including the Oil we will taste enabling you to take home something rather special for your kitchen!
By the end of the tour you will have new knowledge about olive oil flavours and aromas , and a greater understanding of different quality categories such as Extra Virgin Olive Oil, PDO Kolymvari Extra virgin Olive Oil , Organic (BIO), Platinum Ultra low acidity, etc).
I never get bored of watching the process, and indeed I am hard pressed (no pun intended!) to think of any family here in Crete that I know that doesn’t have at least a few trees, enough at least to satisfy their family needs for the year until the next harvest – its an accepted way of life and considered part of being Cretan!
From the olive mill, we head to a local taverna for a lavish lunch, with local dishes based mainly on organic vegetables seasoned abundantly with olive oil, in true Cretan spirit!
Trip duration: 4-5 hours