Buying and Storing Olive Oil

Olive Oil

How to Buy and Store Olive Oil:

I am not a big fan of olives, my wife loves them so we always have them on hand but I do love olive oil.

Olive oil comes in three basic types: There is extra virgin, virgin and pure olive oil. On the top of the olive oil chain is extra virgin olive oil and this olive has less than 1% acidity. Perhaps most importantly is that the olives have been picked and pressed the same day. Extra virgin olive oil is a strong, green color and posses a perfect aroma. Extra virgin olive oil will taste and smells just like the olive from which it came from.

I enjoy a small drink of extra virgin olive oil, about a teaspoon, every now and then. It is my first choice for salad dressing. It can bring your tomatoes, onions and greens to life and help you create a fantastic but basic salad.

The next grade down is virgin olive oil is the next grade. Virgin olive oil has less than 2% acidity with good color and aroma. This is possibly caused by pressing the olive on the day after it is picked.

Pure olive oil is the last grade. Pure olive oil is much lighter in color with little or no aroma. Pure olive oil is a blend virgin olive oil and refined oil. Refined oil is generally extracted from olive pulp, skin and/or pits.

Buying Olive Oil:

It is best to purchase your olive oil in small quantities because olive oil will age and will continue to oxidize. If you make the decision to buy larger quantities then separate the olive oil into smaller containers and keep them tightly sealed.

Before buying take a good look at the bottle and the label. You are looking the DOP or DOC label, both of which are standard organizations that define the various grades of olive oils.You need to also take a look at the colour in order to ensure that the olive oil is green or a dark green; then take a look at the percentage of acidity.

If at all possible taste the olive oil, this will not be possible in a grocery store but should you have the opportunity to tatse it you are looking for a sweet and peppery taste.

Olive oil is a matter of personal tatse like wine and olive oil will not improve with the passage of time.

How to store olive oil:

Olive oil is constantly oxidizing as a result of age, heat, air and light exposure. So to reduce the impact these elements will have on the oil’s quality keep it in a dark glass bottle or stainless steel container.

Never, I repeat never, store olive oil in plastic bottles. The oil is very reactive and if in contact with plastic will take on the properties of the plastic container.

Always keep the container in dark places and in areas that are slightly cooler than room temperature.

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Comments 16 comments

cgull8m profile image

cgull8m 9 years ago from North Carolina

Thanks, thats what I do, store them in a dark area inside the cupboards. I use Olive Daily with lemon juice as a start in the morning, really cleanses the stomach. Olive oil with salads is another great idea. The Greek Salads have mostly Olive oil in them, tastes much better. Thanks.

glassvisage profile image

glassvisage 9 years ago from Northern California

I didn't know buying and storing olive oil was such an art :)

fab 9 years ago

Extra virgin olive oil is obtained directly from the pressing of olives solely by mechanical means.

The extra virgin olive oil must have a maximum acidity, in terms of oleic acid, of 0.8%.

It rapidly goes rancid if it is not stored properly. The oil should be kept in a cool place (max temp. 10°C ÷18°C) and away from light and heat sources.

Storing the extra virgin olive oil into appropriate containers is also very important. For instance, the dark shade of a glass container will protect your oil from direct sunlight.

Besides the acidity, there are also other chemical-physical characteristics that are very important in extra virgin olive oil, i.e. its great antioxidant capacity, which is good for one’s health.

For whoever is interested in oil, please feel free to visit where you can find detailed information on our extra virgin olive oil.

I look forward to reiciving your comments

italianoliveoil profile image

italianoliveoil 7 years ago from London/Dubrovnik/Barcelona

Olive oil is really a wonderful juice, as for storing it you can use wine air replacement spray which takes oxygen out and replaces it with nitrogen and co2 which won't oxidize the oil

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

Thanks for dropping by.

Sufidreamer profile image

Sufidreamer 7 years ago from Sparti, Greece

Hi Bob - delighted to stumble across yet another one of your culinary gems!

Very good advice - rancid olive oil is one of the vilest smelling substances around.

We keep ours in a stainless steel container, under the sink, and it keeps perfectly well. It holds about 15 liters (no idea what that is in gallons) and we decant it into a bottle, to minimise the exposure to the atmosphere.

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

Thanks and thanks for dropping by.

platinumOwl4 profile image

platinumOwl4 7 years ago

Thank you Bob. I thought that happen with Olive Oil and some other food also.

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

Thanks for dropping by

taagz 7 years ago

thank you bob .. that's really appreciated ..

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 7 years ago from New Brunswick Author

Thanks for dropping by.

myawn profile image

myawn 6 years ago from Florida

I didn't really know how to store olive oil until now Thanks nice hub!

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 6 years ago from New Brunswick Author

Glad it helped, thanks for dropping by.

princess g profile image

princess g 6 years ago

I put it in the fridge once, it was a gloppy mess:(

Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 6 years ago from New Brunswick Author

I have made that mistake before.

hansou34 4 years ago

I keep it in the fridge. Yes it does get gloppy but I thought it was preserving the olive oil from aging too quickly.

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