Authentique Extra Virgin Olive Oil from Farmer, a world of new and awesome sensations

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Miguel, if you remember, is the farmer who represents the 4th generation of a family of olive growers and who you’ll already know by the name Olivar de San Miguel (San Miguel’s Olive Grove).

Indeed, thanks to him we have the olive oil Arraigo, whose extraordinary flavour and quality have led to unprecedented success…

When I first met Miguel, he took me to his olive grove, to a specific place within the grove that he is incredibly proud of. He said to me,

“Julio, the oil that comes from these olives is really spectacular. Every year, I make a selection and harvest them just as they start to change colour, when they’re beginning to lose their green, but before they turn black. That’s the fruit that my friends and family harvest with me.”

“Why do you do it this way, Miguel? Why don’t you make more oil?”

“When you’re harvesting olives that early, the oil you get is, at most, eight percent of the raw product, so you’re extracting almost two thirds less oil than if you harvest black olives. No one will pay you what that oil is worth…”

I was, as my son would say, ‘to pillao’: astonished, enthused. Miguel looked at me and, seeing this, said, “Would you like to take a small bottle with you?” And, caught off guard, I replied: “Are you serious?!”

The return home seemed to take a long time. Travelling alongside me in the passenger seat was that little glass bottle, no label, nothing to hint at what was inside. I was looking at it like a child who has just found a hidden treasure…

As soon as I got home, I took a small plate and a ‘telera’: a type of bread peculiar to my city, Cordoba, and sat down at the kitchen table. I picked up the little glass bottle and, opening it with great care, took in a deep breath…The olive grove returned to me with that blossoming of aromas; it was almost as if I had broken open an olive, right there in my kitchen…

With some trepidation, I poured out a little of the oil. It poured almost like cream and had a rich green colour. I took a small piece of the telera and dipped it in the oil until it was soaked through…

Honestly, I don’t have the words to describe the hundred sensations awoken in that moment…

I only know that I kept pouring what I now believed to be liquid gold, dipping the telera in it again and again. And each time I was filled with different sensations. With each piece of the telera, it was as if the flavour kept on enriching itself, endlessly.

So, I called up Miguel, or Migue, as he likes to be called by his friends, and said, “Migue, you’ve got to let the public taste this olive oil…”

And so here I am, one year and three months later, making my dream a reality, and why not say it, the same dream that Miguel and four generations of olive growers have shared: that this oil may come to your kitchen straight from the olive grove, in its original state, just as the family have been making it for over a hundred years. Only that now, that family has grown a little bigger 🙂

Next week, I’ll tell you the rest of the story, how we pay attention to each tiny detail to ensure that the same Olive Oil I tried that day can reach your table too. I’ll talk about all the obstacles we have had to overcome, as well as all the love and care that have gone into this journey!

Click here to read part two…