Historic Olives – Ravida’s 300 Year Old Trees

In a minute, we will get to Ravida Olive Oil’s rich family history, the Sicilian estates’ 300 year-old olive oil trees and the insanely delicious flavor profile.

Written by Leska Tomash – But first, let a few esteemed awards do the talking. Now I know that sometimes awards hype up a certain product and do they really mean anything? Well, in this case, yes.

ravida_extra-virgin-olive-oil_2194The New York International Olive Oil Competition (NYIOOC) is the world’s largest and most prestigious olive oil competition. We are talking about 820 olive oils from 26 countries! And a jury of international experts and the NYIOOC judges of 2016 chose Ravida as one of the “best olive oils in the world.” The whole world.

And they gave it the Gold Award just so everyone knew they really meant it (which Ravida also received in 2013). And they also won a bunch of other awards over the years:  “3 Olives” award from the Slow Food Guide in 2011, 1st and 2nd place from L’Orciolo d’Oro in 2010-2011 and scored a 94 in Flos Olei in 2010-2011. The list goes on and on, but we won’t!

Okay, now on to other cool stuff about Ravida. Well, taste is kind of important so let’s start there. Ravida olive oil holds intense fruity aromas with flavors of green grass, tomato and almonds. Annie Bell of Vogue, United Kingdom describes it as “intensely herbal…with background notes of sea.” A few Ravida recipes that call for a nice dose of Ravida olive oil, just to whet your appetite:  Linguine with cherry tomatoes, capers and summer herbs; grilled eggplant with oregano sea salt; fennel salad with black olives and oranges.

Where did you go? Were you off in Sicily for a minute there, slurping up some linguine? Good for you!

History is pretty cool, too, so moving on.

In the 1700s, the Ravida family acquired the “La Gurra” estate on the southwest coast of Sicily, Italy. For centuries, the family farmed the land that is home to centuries-old lemon and olive groves.

In 1975, Nicolo Ravida took over from his father Luigi and “La Guerra” became a modern and sustainable Azienda Agricola, or commercial farm, dedicated to the growing the finest produce.

cavottoToday, the whole olive oil production is run by Nicolo’s daughter, Natalia Ravida. This beautiful, historically rich estate overlooking the Mediterranean Sea has over 56 hectares/180 acres devoted to oil-producing olives. The olive groves hold three indigenous varieties: Cerasuola, Biancolilla and Nocellara. We’ve already established that the immediate pressing of these varieties result in a phenomenal flavor.

Awards, taste and history are all important, but so is environmental sustainability. The olives are grown without the use of fertilizers or pesticides and in accordance with EU regulations for organic farming.

Sounds like the makings of a pretty amazing olive oil.