Today we harvested our olives – our friend Kristina is in the branches of the Canino tree, which is one of the four we have at the end of our terrace. We are attempting to make brined olives this year. Next week we will adventure 90 minutes north of Rome to the Viterbo area for the new season olive oil. Our organic producer opens his doors every day of the year, and does a brisk sale with his blackberry jams, hazelnuts and chickpeas, but the single most interesting time to visit is in the weeks immediately following the olive harvest. Gioacchino closed his press last week, so we will be procuring some of his 2009 oil produced from olives just shy of full maturity and that he choses not to filter. We expect that the new season oil he will serve us on warm bruschetta will be wonderfully lively, intensely “green”, with a delightful sting and intense fruitiness, but within four to five months it will balance into a more rounded oil that will taste young still even when the 2010 oil becomes ready. We buy our oil in three- and five-liter cans, and you can too, directly from him, and then bubble wrap them to pack neatly into hard suitcases. He is also pleased to ship.
Please watch for our report soon on a day with Gioacchino.
While Spazio Bio (see our previous posting) sells his oil, we have always urged our clients to purchase it at the source, touring with this personable young farmer his property, admiring the olives and if possible enjoying a succulent country lunch on the estate. Nearby is the spectacular Renaissance gardens of Villa Lante, pictured below, which our children call one of their favorites, plus the brooding “Monster Park” of Bomarzo, and we can suggest travel means by public transport, car and driver or private car rental.