If you’re in our La Famiglia wine club, you’re one of the lucky few to obtain your very own bottle of our prized Le Vigne Olive Oil in your February club shipment. Grown 100% on our estate, this oil is highly regarded as one of the most flavorful, rustic, and versatile olive oils in the area. A simple drizzle is the perfect way to accentuate the bright and fruity flavors of your cooking, offering a little zing to each bite. After harvesting the olives from the five acres of Arbequina olive trees on our estate, we extract and press the oil using a special mill onsite annually. This year’s result might be the most spectacular of all, boasting buttery-smooth flavors of apple, artichoke, and ripe tropical fruit.
We hope that you will use this gift at your table to take your cooking to the next level, and that you will savor it with your friends and family as much as we do. Please enjoy this brief overview of the actual milling process, followed by serving suggestions by our fantastic staff on how to use this showstopping finishing oil.
The Arbequina Olive tree itself originates in northeast Spain, and has a weeping form with dark green leaves. By nature, it thrives during the hot, dry summers typical of Paso Robles, while adeptly resisting frost and pests:
When they ripen in mid-autumn, the trees gift a bountiful harvest of green and purple olives, each barely the size of a thumbprint:
These olives are highly aromatic, and the flavor is buttery and fruity. Using cold-press extraction to retain the delicate bouquet and flavors, we mill the olives and bottle without any harsh filtration:
Note the almost electric-green color the oil turns when it is pressed. This is as fresh as it gets!
The resulting oil is crisp and unadulterated, leaving a clean, pleasing taste on the palate. It has a great fruitiness and a well-balanced pungency that is often sought after by many foodies and fanatics all around the world.
We recommend that you use your bottle as a finishing oil, adding brightness to salads, cheeses, and other dishes to highlight your meal’s fresh flavors. Many of our own employees have their own bottle at home, so we asked them to offer some of their favorite uses for this special oil. Here’s what they had to say:
Carlyn Moore, our Enologist: “Rip open a hunk of crusty bread and smear avocado over the open face. Top with sliced tomatoes, drizzle with plenty of Le Vigne olive oil, and finish with a sprinkle of Lemon & Herbs seasoning from Paso Robles Preserves. Best on sunny days with bare feet in the grass and some Chardonnay in your glass.”
Bethany Springer, our Cheesemonger: “This olive oil is perfect for salad dressings, as it offers a lot of flavor without being overpowering. Make a killer honeycrisp apple dressing with equal parts apple juice and apple cider vinegar, a touch of lemon juice, lavender honey, and a healthy amount of Le Vigne olive oil. Salt and pepper to taste, and pair with a fruity Viognier or Sauvignon Blanc.”
Cindi Patterson, our Deli Manager and Cheesemonger: In lieu of butter, I like to use Le Vigne olive oil over freshly popped popcorn and finish with a sprinkle of Garden Confetti Seasoning from Paso Robles Preserves. Pair with our 2015 Le Vigne Paso Robles Rosé.
Renee Ferrell, our Tasting Room Lead: “I had tomato soup and grilled cheese the other day. I drizzled a swirl of the Le Vigne olive oil over the soup right before eating it. It floated on top like a peppery garnish. No extra pepper needed! I also put it in our enchiladas last night. After filling the tortillas with the goods I drizzled oil on top and closed it up. The flavor really packs a huge punch.”
Michael Barreto, our Winemaker: “Drizzle Le Vigne olive oil over freshly grilled steaks so that the heat will unlock the aromatics.” His wife, Joey Barreto, suggests trickling smashed baby potatoes with the oil for a tasty side dish that will pair fantastically with the steak.
Michelle Zentmyer, our Tasting Room Ambassador: “Of course the easy use for this oil to dip my bread in. I also use it on my pasta dishes, regardless of the sauce. After cooking the pasta and topping with sauce and Parmesan, I liberally pour the olive oil on top. There’s not much that it doesn’t go with. I could practically drink the stuff.”
What is your favorite way to use Le Vigne Olive Oil? Share your tips and tricks with us in the comments below – we’d love to hear from you!