Olive oil is an expression of terroir | Certa

#ExtraVirginOliveOil #Sicily #Food

Olive oil is an expression of terroir

Written by Chris Dwyer
/
Photo by Capsule 48

It's an ancient food, profound in its history and cultural impact. But olive oil is also an expression of terroir, just like grapes, so five very distinct bottles from Tasca d'Almerita reflect their own unique regions of Sicily. The Mediterranean island is remarkably diverse, from the frequently dry and dusty interior around Regaleali to the sea-swept Aeolian Islands and stunning property of Capofaro. 

Regaleali's own 'yellow gold' comes from olive trees more than a hundred years old, back from the days when Regaleali - from the Arabic for 'House of Ali' - was an elegant country home as well as working farm. The olives are harvested manually and cold processed, a fabulous blend of varietals: mainly Biancolilla and Nocellara but also Cerasuola and Ogliarola Messinese and the wonderfully-named Pidicuddara, Carolea, Rizza and Giarraffa.

Beautifully aromatic, the virgin olive oil is a heady mix of green and gold to look at, while as soon as it is poured, there are undoubted notes of rosemary and even artichoke. Whether you choose focaccia - or maybe just your finger - to taste it, there's a fabulous peppery, vaguely spicy finish. Youthful and expressive, it represents Regaleali's remarkable microclimate and very special sense of place.

The contrast with the Aeolian Islands, some six hours away by car and ferry, is striking. Magical Capofaro - or 'Lighthouse' - is an estate that hugs Malvasia-covered cliffs overlooking the magnificent Stromboli volcano on the horizon. 

There are few culinary experiences or locations to compare with sitting al fresco, a glass of superb Didyme in hand, as the sun slowly sets over the Tyrrhenian Sea. When Stromboli erupts - as it did on our visit - the sky is illuminated with jaw-dropping flame and fury.

At dinner, Chef Ludovico de Vivo crafts bread named by Gambero Rosso as the best in all of Italy. When gently dipped in Capofaro's own olive oil, vibrant and slightly salty, maybe reflecting the spray of the sea, you have the ultimate expression of terroir - and a reminder why Italy is unsurpassed when it comes to produce, people and passion.

Latest from news

Drink with Certa #6: Di Majo Norante's Tintilia
#DiMajoNorante

Drink with Certa #6: Di Majo Norante's Tintilia

The Tintilia vine is scarcely diffused and little cultivated in Italy. However, this does not apply to Molise, the only region in which a specific DOC has been dedicated to Tintilia wine. Di Majo Norante honors this ancient native Molise vine, making it pure.

Drink with Certa #7: Cavalleri's Blanc de Blancs
#Cavalleri
#Franciacorta
#BlancDeBlancs

Drink with Certa #7: Cavalleri's Blanc de Blancs

Blanc de Blancs Nature is the proud expression of all Cavalleri's experimental research in the past ten years. 

Drink with Certa #8: Fattoria Carpineta Fontalpino's Chianti Classico
#ChiantiClassico
#Chianti

Drink with Certa #8: Fattoria Carpineta Fontalpino's Chianti Classico

This Chianti Classico DOCG of the Carpineta Fontalpino company best represents the traditions of the places where this production reality was born.

LOGO

checkcheckbox-offcheckbox-oncloseCreated with Sketch.ctadownloademailfacebookgoogleinstagrammailmap-markermarchio_blackmenuCreated with Sketch.minuspausepinplayplusCreated with Sketch.quoteradio-offradio-ontripadvisortwitteryoutube