Questions & Answers

What does extra-virgin mean?

Extra-virgin olive oil refers to cold extraction olive oil obtained directly from olives and solely by mechanical means.

The different names for olive oil indicate the degree of processing the oil has undergone as well as the quality of the oil. Extra-virgin olive oil is the highest grade available, followed by virgin olive oil. The word "virgin" indicates that the olives have been pressed to extract the oil; no heat or chemicals have been used during the extraction process, and the oil is pure and unrefined. Extra-virgin olive oils contain the highest levels of polyphenols; antioxidants that have been linked with better health.

What’s the difference between certain qualities of oil?

Extra-virgin olive oil comes from virgin oil production only, has less than 0.8% acidity and an exceptional peppery finish. It accounts for less than 10% of oil in many producing countries; the percentage is far higher in the Mediterranean countries like Greece.

Virgin olive oil comes from virgin oil production only, has less than 1.5% acidity and is judged to have a good taste.

Oils labeled as pure olive oil or olive oil are usually a blend of refined and virgin production oil. They commonly lack a strong flavour.

What is the proper way to taste olive oil?

When tasting olive oil, much of the oil’s characteristics are perceived through the sense of smell. Though most people enjoy olive oil with other foods, the following steps allow us to focus on the olive oil’s flavour without distraction:

  • Pour a small amount of oil (about 1 tablespoon) into a small tapered wine glass.
  • Hold the glass in one hand and use your other hand to cover the glass while swirling the oil to release its aroma.
  • Uncover the glass and inhale deeply from the top of the glass. Think about whether the aroma is mild or strong.
  • Next, slurp the oil; this is done by sipping a small amount of oil into your mouth while “sipping” some air as well. (When done correctly, you will make that impolite noise that would cause you to be scolded when you were a child!) Slurping emulsifies the oil with air that helps to spread it throughout your mouth - giving you the chance to savor every nuance of flavour with just a small sip of oil.
  • Finish by swallowing the oil and noticing if it leaves a stinging sensation in your throat. That slight burn is symbolic of a superior quality oil.

How should I store my olive oil?

Make sure you keep your oil in a dark glass bottle away from the sun and any source of heat, such as your stove. You can also store it in a tin can, but make sure that the can is filled to the top with the olive oil. There shouldn’t be any empty space left in the can, as the air within will lead to the deterioration of the oil. Instead, once opened, store the olive oil from the tin in dark glass bottles to ensure longevity and freshness. Olive oil does not need to be refrigerated. If refrigerated, it will become thick and cloudy.

Can I cook with extra-virgin olive oil?

Yes!

The important thing about FOOD is cooking with oil, including 100% EXTRA-VIRGIN OLIVE OIL. Otherwise you are MISSING all the FLAVOURS it brings out in your food.

Just DO NOT heat the oil over its smoke point.

The smoke point refers to the temperature at which a cooking fat or oil begins to break down. When heated, olive oil is the most stable fat, which means it stands up well to MEDIUM LOW temperatures. Its high smoke point (410ºF or 210ºC) is well above the ideal temperature for food (356ºF or 180ºC). The digestibility of olive oil is not affected when it is heated, even when it is reused several times.

Acropolis Organics suggests sautéing vegetables with olive oil, frying your eggs in low heat, sautéing garlic and onions, and any other masterpieces. Using our olive oil for light cooking just brings out the aromas of the oil and enhances the flavour of the food. It just makes your simple cooking 1000 times better.

What is olive oil adulteration?

Olive oil adulteration is an international business that involves the mixing of extra-virgin olive oil with cheaper, lower-grade oils. Sometimes, it’s oil from a different source — like canola oil or sunflower oil. Other times, the extra-virgin olive oil is blended with a poorer quality olive oil. The blended oil is then chemically deodorized, colored, and possibly even flavoured and sold as “extra-virgin” oil. Unfortunately, over 65% of the extra-virgin olive oils in the market are adulterated.

Acropolis Organics’ extra-virgin olive oil does not have any additives, it only contains one ingredient: extra-virgin olive oil from one variety of olive, one estate and one mill.

What does the low acidity indicate?

Acidity measures the oil's chemical degradation; as the oil degrades, more fatty acids are freed from the glycerides, increasing the level of free acidity and thereby increasing rancidity. An olive oil containing less than 0.8% acidity is considered extra-virgin, with exceptional flavour, odour and free fatty acid content of less than 0.8g per 100g.

What is the shelf life of olive oil and how is it related to the lot number?

A lot number is imprinted on every bottle of imported olive oil and it traces the harvest date of the oil. This number corresponds to the oil’s expiration date. Olive oil is nature’s preservative, and it only starts to deteriorate if exposed to direct sunlight and heat. Typically, olive oil has a shelf life of 2 years from the time of harvest.

What do the K270/K232/DK values indicate?

These values indicate the freshness and purity of the oil; it guarantees that the oil has not been blended with any other oil and is 100% extra-virgin.

What do peroxide values indicate?

Peroxide value measures the degree to which the oil is oxidized, which is another cause of rancidity. The lower the findings, the lower the percentage of acidulous substances harmful to cells.

What is a Protected Designation of Origin?

PDO refers to olive oils with exceptional properties and quality derived from their place of origin as well as from the nature of their production.

What type of fruit is an olive?

The olive fruit is a drupe. It has a bitter component (oleuropein), a low sugar content (2.6-6%) compared with other drupes (12% or more) and a high oil content (12-30%) depending on the time of year and variety.

These characteristics make it a fruit that cannot be consumed directly from the tree. It has to undergo a series of processes that differ considerably from region to region, and which also depend on variety.

Does the color of olive oil make a difference?

The colour of an olive oil is related to the amount of chlorophyll it contains. This has an effect on the chain reaction that makes oils rancid in the presence of light. Quality olive oils are usually stored in dark bottles and kept away from heat and sun.

Some labels make a point of saying that the olive oil was made within a short period of time after harvesting. Why would this be important?

One of the most critical factors in making high quality olive oil is the time that elapses between harvesting the olive and extracting its oil. Ideally, olives should be processed into oil within 24 hours after harvesting. Acropolis Organics follows strict standards and makes it a point to follow this rule.

Olive oils are packaged in different coloured bottles. Does this make a difference?

Light is the enemy of olive oil as it is one of the factors that causes rancidity. You should always purchase oils stored in dark opaque glass containers. Some producers package their oils in clear bottles. This is mainly to attract the buyer. Storing olive oil in clear bottles is detrimental to its quality.

Why are some olive oils cloudy?

The cloudiness arises from small particles of olive that remain after processing. These particles do not convey any additional health benefits or flavour. Cloudy olive oils generally have shorter shelf lives and if the cloudiness settles into the base of the bottle, the resultant sediment can cause off-characters to be formed. Incidentally, most clear oils get that way not by being filtered but simply by allowing the oil to settle naturally in tank under the force of gravity. The clear oil is removed from the sediment at the bottom of the tank and is bottled. Acropolis Organics ensures that no small particles of olive remain in the oil after processing.

What is the nutritional value of olive oil?

One tablespoon (15 mL) of Acropolis Organics olive oil contains the following:

  • Calories: 120
  • Fat: 14g
    • Saturated Fat: 2g
    • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 0
  • Protein: 0

Why choose Greek olive oil?

Greece has the best climate in the world for growing and producing olive oil, and is home to the exclusive Koroneiki variety, which is considered the king of olives for making oil. Greek olive oil contains more polyphenols than extra-virgin oils of other origins. It has the lowest acidity, best colour and aroma. All Acropolis Organics extra-virgin olive oil is made only from Koroneiki olives.

Where is Kolymvari?

Kolymvari, also known as Kolymbari, is a town and former municipality in the Chania regional unit of Crete, Greece. It is home to the Olive Tree of Vouves, considered to be the OLDEST OLIVE TREE in the world, which still produces olives today. All Acropolis Organics’ extra-virgin olive oils are sourced from descendants of the Olive Tree of Vouves.

What does the red seal on the top of Acropolis Organics olive oil bottle represent?

The red seal on Acropolis Organics bottles includes the PDO number, which traces the route and origin. The EU issues this classification to select growers and producers of the highest quality agricultural products.

Why should I choose olive oil over coconut oil?

There have been extensive studies done on olive oil proving its health benefits, unlike coconut oil. Olive oil has 67% more monounsaturated fat, 9% more polyunsaturated fat and 40 times more polyphenol antioxidants compared to coconut oil.

Monounsaturated fat and polyunsaturated fat can decrease the risk of heart disease, decrease inflammation and improve cholesterol. Omega-3 is a type of polyunsaturated fat, which is also very beneficial for heart health. Moreover, polyphenol antioxidants have been linked to the prevention of degenerative diseases such as cardiovascular diseases and cancers.

Are your products vegan?

All of our products are vegan, except those that contain honey; which are our Balsamic Vinegar with Honey, EVOO with Honey Garlic and EVOO with Honey Mustard.

What does “Bio-Harvest” mean?

Bio-Harvest refers to traditional farming methods based on the idea that the Earth is a living, interconnected organism which farmers should work with and nurture. It is similar to organic farming, however bio-harvest principles also focus on the spiritual aspect of farming.

Bio-Harvest methods put emphasis on the use of natural processes to create sustainable agriculture that is completely organic. In contrast, industrial farming practices use mass production techniques and chemical agents that destroy the soil vitality and deplete the produce of their nutrients.

The bio-harvest method does not use any synthetic fertilizers, chemicals or pesticides. Instead, it focuses on the health of the soil through the use of compost, animal manure and green manure. In fact, the soil quality achieved through bio-harvest farming is considered superior than conventional farmed soils, which in turn improves the taste of the harvested crops.

Acropolis Organics follows bio-harvest farming practices:

  1. Soil Fertility Management: We add organic sheep manure to our soil to enrich the soil nutrients.
  2. Composting: We also compost the pulp of the olive fruit and the leaves for a year, and then feed it back to our trees.
  3. Pruning & Mulching: We prune our trees and mulch the remains to conserve moisture and improve fertility.
  4. Insect Control: We also practice holistic pest control without the use of pesticides, chemicals and sprays.
  5. Water Conservation: Our groves are naturally irrigated by rain. We only import fresh water to wash our olives and prepare them for pressing.
  6. Harvesting: Our entire village of Kolymvari comes together to carefully pick the olive fruits by hand to protect the integrity of the tree, the health of the olive and deliver superior tasting oil.