Reading of the Day: On Olive Oil

Good afternoon, friends! A relaxing day around these parts. True, my ride to work was hella gusty, resulting in bangs sweat-plastered to my forehead, but lyfe since then has been golden.

One nugget of joy from today’s Internet Explorations is this post on ciao samin, Samin Nosrat’s blog. Samin* offers readers advice about how to buy olive oil, starting at the true start: how to identify good olive oil. So, how DOES one identify good oil? Samin’s answer: it’s all about taste (not cost). That is to say — and I’m grossly oversimplifying, here — follow your heart and palate.

Which is good news for yours truly. As much as I’d love to spend $35 on a bottle of oil, that ain’t in the cards just yet — I’ve got other billz to pay, y’all. (Note: I have several get-rich-quick schemes a’brewing, and the internet will be the first to know if/when I strike it rich.)

Last weekend, I bought a bottle of California Olive Ranch EVOO (feat. above). I’d bought it once years ago, based on the comparative cuteness of its bottle,** but I couldn’t remember its taste. Now I have the chance to revisit this product of yore, judge it in relation to the other olive oils I’ve had (which, truthfully, isn’t that many). I’ve used said oil a few times this week and haven’t formed a distinct impression — yet. I will, though: Oh, will I ever! And I’ll report my findings to you.I’ve got half a mind to start an olive-oil journal. For one, I love lists: lists of anything. Most of my contemporary lists are of the to-do variety, but when I was a teenager (13 or 14), I created this massive list of everything I liked. I set aside ten-odd pages in a journal of mine and added to the list whenever I could. In retrospect: man, I had a gratitude journal before gratitude journals were cool. #aheadofthecurve.

But back to the notion of an olive-oil journal. Such a project would not only cater to my love of lists & classification, but it would help me identify my ideal oil: one whose taste, price point, and appearance meet my needs. An OOjournal might not be as glamorous as, say, a cheese journal or a scotch journal, but it would be  infinitely more practical. I love cheese and scotch, but neither of them is an everyday food. I use olive oil [almost] every day. It would behoove me to know the oils whose flavor I most enjoy. Added bonus: I love the idea of having a record of All The Oils I’ve Tasted. Someday, far in the future, I’ll sit in my rocking chair, paging through the OOjournal, remembering the great oils of my young adulthood.

If you have a moment, wander over to ciao samin and beef up your olive-(oil) knowledge. (I wanted to say “olive knowledge,” which has a great ring to it but isn’t wholly accurate.) For any interested parties, here’s a Smithsonian post about the process of tasting olive oils.


Image sources: [1], [2]

*Typically, I refer to authors by their last names, but referring to Ms. Nosrat as “Samin” seems friendlier, more natural, and so it shall be!

**A terrible reason to buy a food product, I realize, but I’m in FULL DISCLOSURE MODE.


2 responses to “Reading of the Day: On Olive Oil

  1. yes! call me samin! love it!

  2. Right on! Thanks for reading 🙂

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