Tap into a supply of premium olive oil, minus the packaging

Tap into a supply of premium olive oil, minus the packaging

Weigh shops, or refill stores, may be back in a big way, but one local business is offering to dispense a premium product used by top chefs into your reusable vessel of choice.

At Fowey Valley HQ in Lostwithiel, green-gold nectar is flowing into the jars and bottles of food-loving locals, following a special delivery of olive oil from the 2022 harvest, direct from Sicily.

Every year the olive oil is delivered in large vessels and kept in these to maximise freshness until it needs to be bottled on to be sold.

However, this year, as well as bottling some for this own shop and other local food stores, Owner Barrie Gibson is inviting people to come and fill up their own containers, saving unnecessary waste and reducing costs.

Barrie discovered the Sicilian olive oil he now proudly dispenses on a trip to the island when he was seeking out an oil to partner with his own Fowey Valley Cider Vinegar.

He discovered that the Bua’s – family friends who supplied him with cork for his méthode traditionelle vintage cider – also cultivate olive trees, and these ancient grooves in the Belice Valley were highly prized.

The Belice Valley is famed for its Nocellera olives which are characterised by their bright green colour and large, plump size; Nocellera are sold at a premium in supermarkets here in the UK.

The harvest takes place in October and the oil is extracted within 24hrs at the town press in nearby Castelvetrano.

The oil is then stored in sealed stainless-steel vats to preserve freshness – it’s smaller versions of these air-tight containers which are shipped all the way to Barrie in Lostwithiel.

Like wine, each harvest is different, with the character of the oil being determined by the weather and other environmental factors affecting the growing season.

It’s always best to enjoy olive oil when it’s ultra-fresh and the flavours are most pronounced, which is why new season olive oil should be reserved for drizzling and dipping rather than cooking with.

The 2022 vintage is excellent according to Barrie, who describes it as: “Fruity with pronounced citrus notes. It’s distinctively light, with hints of green apple, tomatoes and fresh almonds. We’ve sent some to several of our chef customers to try and they’ve been seriously impressed.”

Fowey Valley HQ on the Restormel Estate in Lostwithiel is open from 9am to 4pm, Monday to Friday. Simply bring along your container and pay by the litre, reducing waste and saving money on the retail price compared to the bottled product. 

Find out more: www.foweyvalleycider.co.uk