Like a good wine, olive oil flavour is directly influenced by the soil, the cultivar, and the location where it is grown. In the picture above I have chosen three extra virgin oils from from the most notable areas of Greece. From left to right,
- Oil from Laconia: From the land of Sparta we have an oil that is heady and bold. This oil is as powerful as it’s ancient ancestors were. With its balanced acidity and refreshing taste, this oil pares well with a salad of rocket and basil.
- Oil from Chania, Crete: As ancient as Greece itself, oil from Crete needs no introduction. Moderated by the sea, this oil is more subdued yet livelier than it’s Spartan cousin. This is an oil to enjoy with a slab of feta cheese and a roasted sweet red florina pepper.
- Oil from Kalamata: Hot summers and cool sea breezes create the perfect climate for olives. Kalamata oil is the oil of Greece. This oil pares well with crisp sweet cucumbers and the intense overripe flavours of a Greek salad in July.
I don’t know if you can find any of these oils in your local Greek market, but if you can they will be a great addition to your summertime salad repertoire.