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What is EVOO?

What is EVOO?

You've likely heard "EVOO" on cooking shows or seen it in ingredients lists. But what's its origin and meaning?

EVOO
 stands for Extra Virgin Olive Oil, the highest grade of olive oil. A special process involving the first cold pressing of pure, unaltered olives without additives and at temperatures not exceeding 27°C (80°F) makes olive oil extra virgin. It must be free of defects with an acidity below 0.8%. EVOO retains more vitamins and antioxidants due to minimal processing.

EVOO is simply an acronym for Extra Virgin Olive Oil. It's not just any olive oil; it's the good stuff – the highest grade of olive oil available. The term EVOO gained widespread recognition in the early 2000s, thanks to American celebrity chef, Rachael Ray.


EVOO is a key ingredient in Mediterranean cuisine and has a multitude of health benefits, from heart health to anti-inflammatory properties.


What Makes Olive Oil Extra Virgin?


EVOO is the highest quality of the virgin olive oils. As the name implies, the olives must be pure and not altered in any way from their natural state.

EVOO must come from the first extraction or pressing of the olives. This means that only the purest oil, extracted directly from the olives without any additives or alterations, can be deemed "extra virgin."

Temperature plays a crucial role in maintaining the integrity of the oil. During the extraction process, the temperature must not exceed 27°C (80°F). This ensures that the delicate flavors and beneficial compounds in the olives are preserved, as excessive heat can degrade them.


What is the Difference between Organic and EVOO?


While both "organic" and "EVOO" may appear on the label of certain olive oils, they convey different aspects of the olive oil.

When a bottle is labeled "organic," it refers to the way the olives were grown. Organic farming practices involve cultivating the olives without the use of synthetic pesticides, fertilizers, or genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
Adherence to stringent EU regulations is essential for both organic farmers and processors, who undergo regular inspections at every stage of the organic production process. Only those who meet these requirements are permitted to display the organic logo on their products.

“EVOO” speaks to the quality of the oil. As mentioned earlier, EVOO is the highest grade of olive oil, obtained from the first pressing of olives without the use of heat or chemicals. It's prized for its superior flavor, aroma, and nutritional profile.

When you find both "Organic” and “EVOO” on the label, you're getting the best of both. Not only are the olives grown naturally without harmful chemicals or additives, but the resulting oil also meets the stringent standards of extra virgin quality. This means you can enjoy the delicious taste and health benefits of EVOO with the added assurance that it's produced in an environmentally responsible manner.


Is Fondo Gionino Olive Oil EVOO and Organic?


Yes and yes!

By meeting the strict criteria for EVOO, Fondo Gionino not only has exceptional taste, but it's also full of health benefits. Our EVOO is packed with polyphenols and antioxidants, which are known for their anti-inflammatory properties and their ability to support heart health, making Fondo Gionino EVOO a smart, healthy choice.

Fondo Gionino EVOO received the prestigious "BIO" (Organic) label from the European Union, a recognition that we are very proud of. This designation underscores our unwavering commitment to organic farming practices and environmental sustainability.

Our olive trees and the land they grow on are treated with the utmost respect and care. Following in the footsteps of our ancestors, we employ traditional harvesting methods that prioritize quality over quantity.

At Fondo Gionino, we take a hands-on approach to olive oil production, personally overseeing every step of the process from the olive tree to the bottle. Each olive is hand-picked with precision and attention to detail. Within hours of our olives being plucked from the branches, they begin their journey to the mill and finally into the bottle. Throughout this process, we maintain a meticulous level of care and attention to detail.

One of the key aspects of our commitment to quality is that every olive used in our olive oil is our own. Unlike some producers who may purchase olives from various sources, we exclusively use olives grown on our own land. This means that from cultivation to harvest, we have complete control over the entire process, ensuring that only the finest, freshest olives are used to create Fondo Gionino EVOO.

By maintaining this strict adherence to using only our own olives, we can guarantee the authenticity and purity of our olive oil. When you choose Fondo Gionino EVOO, you can be sure that you're getting 100% organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil from our land in Calabria, Italy in every bottle. It's a testament to our dedication to quality and our passion for delivering the best possible product to our customers.


How Does Extra Virgin Olive Oil Differ from Virgin Olive Oil?


As per the standards outlined by the International Olive Council (IOC), virgin olive oils must originate solely from the fruit of the olive tree and extracted through mechanical or other physical means.

Post-extraction or pressing, olive oil undergoes a grading process, with extra-virgin olive oil being held to the highest standard.

To attain the esteemed "extra-virgin" classification, the oil must exhibit a fruity taste profile without any sensory defects and maintain a free acidity level below 0.8%.

Conversely, virgin olive oil may exhibit minor flaws and possess an acidity ranging from 0.8% to 2.0%.

Extra-virgin olive oil is widely acknowledged as the healthiest option among the grades of available olive oil. Its minimal processing preserves a higher concentration of essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, such as polyphenols. These compounds offer an array of health benefits, including anti-inflammatory properties, which can reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

Nevertheless, both extra-virgin and virgin olive oils are considered healthy fats and should be consumed in moderation within the context of a balanced diet.

Notably, in North America, "virgin olive oil" labels are less common, with consumer preference and market focus leaning heavily toward extra-virgin options.


What is EVOO Best Used For?


Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) offers a wide range of culinary applications, each tailored to its distinct flavor profile or fruitiness classification.

Delicate Oils:

These oils have a subtle flavor profile, making them ideal for delicate cooking methods like baking and sautéing. They also enhance the flavors of lighter foods, such as fish and poultry, without overpowering them. Delicate oils can also be used in salads or vegetables to add a hint of richness and depth.

Medium Oils:

With a balanced flavor profile, medium oils are the most versatile. They can be used in a variety of dishes, including soups, salads, and sauces. Their medium intensity also makes them perfect for finishing touches, adding a final splash of flavor to any dish. Medium oils are also excellent for dipping bread or raw vegetables.

Robust Oils:

These oils have an intense flavor profile, making them perfect for hearty, robust dishes. Their boldness stands up well to the strong flavors of stews, braises, and rich sauces, adding depth and complexity to the dish.

By understanding the different varieties of EVOO, you can select the perfect oil to complement your meal, whether you're preparing something light and delicate or a hearty, robust meal. With its versatility and unparalleled flavor, EVOO is a staple ingredient in any kitchen.


What Variety of EVOO is Fondo Gionino?


Fondo Gionino EVOO is characterized by its smooth texture and nuanced flavor profile. Upon first taste, it greets the palate with a gentle sweetness and fruity notes, and gradually finishes with a subtle spiciness that lingers pleasantly on the tongue. This intricate flavor profile aligns Fondo Gionino EVOO with the characteristics of a medium variety.

Medium olive oils are extremely versatile and pair very well with a wide array of dishes. They possess enough robustness to enhance the flavors of hearty dishes, but also have a gentle enough profile to complement lighter fare without overpowering it.

Whether you're dressing salads, marinating meats, or simply adding a finishing touch to your dishes, Fondo Gionino EVOO adds a refreshing taste of the Mediterranean to every meal.


What Sets Fondo Gionino EVOO apart?


Fondo Gionino represents more than just a bottle of olive oil; it embodies our unwavering dedication to excellence, sustainability, and the cherished traditions of olive cultivation in Calabria.

Every bottle serves as a testament to our passion and expertise of olive oil production, ensuring that each drop is infused with authenticity and purity. It's our way of sharing the rich heritage and exceptional taste of Calabrian olive oil with discerning palates worldwide.

Additionally, Fondo Gionino suggests a variety of recipes to complement the flavors of our olive oil, providing culinary inspiration for our customers.


FAQs:



Q: What's EVOO's max acidity?
A: The maximum level of acidity allowed for extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) is 0.8%.

Q: Is all EVOO organic?
A: Not all EVOOs are organic. It's organic only if made with organic farming methods.

Q: Which olive oil should I use?
A: The best olive oil to use depends on the dish's flavor needs and cooking method. Use EVOO for its flavor in raw dishes, and virgin olive oil for general cooking.

Q: Do olive oils taste different?
A: Olive oils can vary in taste, influenced by the olive variety, growing region, climate, harvest time, and production.

Q: Does heat affect olive oil's flavor and nutrients?
A: Yes, heat can diminish flavor, produce off-tastes, and degrade nutrients and antioxidants in olive oil. It's best used at lower temperatures to retain its qualities.

Q: How does the period of harvest influence the taste of EVOO?
A: The harvest timing shapes extra virgin olive oil's flavor; early-picked olives give a bold and peppery oil rich in antioxidants, while late-picked olives offer a mild, fruity, and buttery oil. This timing variety allows for olive oils with diverse taste profiles.