Extra Virgin Olive Oils

We offer a diverse selection of extra virgin olive oils. Our focus is Italy, but we carry a variety of oils from other countries such as Spain, the U.S., France and more.
  • Online ordering is available on our website www.convitocafeandmarket.com.
  • We ship anywhere.
  • Prices and selection may vary as our selection of olive oils is constantly changing. We consequently carry more olive oils than are listed here, even though we try to update our list as much as possible. Please inquire.

Olive Oil Information

Extra Virgin is top quality oil that is obtained by cold pressing of wholesome olives which are ground within 3-4 days of picking and thus are not yet fermented. Extra virgin olive oil has an acidity rate of less than 1%. Fine extra virgin olive oil may be green or golden depending on the species of olives, the region, the soil, and the degree of ripeness of the olives at harvest.

Italy is generally considered to have the finest olive oil in the world. Though, no region in Italy is better than another. It all depends on your taste. As with wine, different estates within the same region may produce oil with different characteristics and flavors.

Following is a general guide to the 6 distinct major olive oil producing regions in Italy.

Apulia: Clear, green with yellow reflections, olivey smell, hints of dry grass & tomatoes.

Lazio: Clear, green, olivey smell, fruity with hints of cardoons, artichokes & almonds.

Liguria: Lightly foggy, golden yellow, delicate smell, sweet, slightly fruity taste.

Sicilia: Foggy, green, olivey vegetable smell, intense fruity taste of green tomatoes.

Toscano: Clear, deep green, intense smell, fruity with peppery finishes & hints of cut grass.

Umbria: Clear, deep green, olivey smell, fruity with hints of fresh greens & artichokes.

Questions and Answers/p>

According to the International Olive Oil Council the following questions are some of the most frequently asked regarding olive oil.

Q. Do all olive oils taste the same?
A. Olive oils, both pure and Extra Virgin, have a wide variety of tastes. Flavor variations are due to differences in climate, soil and from more than 60 varieties of olives grown for olive oil production.

Q. Can you tell from the color how an olive oil is going to taste?
A. The only way to tell how an olive oil is going to taste is to taste it. Colors range from a golden tint to a rich deep green, but there is no rule of thumb about how each will taste. There is a common misconception that the darker oils have a more pronounced flavor. In fact, there is no relationship between the flavor and the physical characteristics of the oil.

Q. What do "First Pressing" and "Cold Pressing" mean?
A. The terms are archaic, though some producers continue to use them. They are leftover from a bygone era when farmers would first press for sale, and then for their own table use, using heat to extract more olive oil from the crushed olive paste. Now, all oils are from a single pressing, at room temperature.

Q. What is "Extra Virgin" olive oil?
A. Olive oil that has not needed any purification and meets very high standards of aroma, flavor and color. It must have less than one percent of oleic acid.

Q. Doesn’t olive oil have more calories than other oils?
A. A tablespoon of olive oil contains 120-125 calories, the same amount as other oils. A little bit goes a long way toward adding body and flavor.

Q. Does olive oil contain cholesterol?
A. No it does not. Olive oil is a non-saturated fat, which reduces the LDL in the blood. Unlike polyunsaturated fat, olive oil leaves untouched the HDL which protects the arteries from cholesterol build up.

Q. Does olive oil require refrigeration?
A. Emphatically, no. It will last up to two years on your shelf. Just keep tightly capped, in a cool cupboard, away from direct light. If it is refrigerated, the oil thickens & becomes cloudy. This does not harm the oil, which will become clear when brought back to room temperature.

Q. What is unfiltered oil? Is sediment at the bottom of the bottle o.k. to consume?
A. Unfiltered oil contains small particles of olive flesh. Olive oil aficionados claim this adds additional flavor and is safe to consume.
Unfiltered oil should be carefully stored and used within 1 year of bottling.

Q. What is Olio Nuovo or Novello or Early Harvest Oil?
A. Green olives have slightly less oil, more bitterness and can be higher in polyphenols. The oil tends to be more expensive because it takes more olives to make a bottle of oil. Many people like the peppery and bitter quality of early harvest oil.

Q. What is Late Harvest Oil ? (like Ceppo Antico)
A. Late harvest or "Winter" fruit is more ripe so like other ripe fruit it has a light, mellow taste with little bitterness and more floral flavors. The olives are picked later, in the winter months.

reservations

Call 847-251-3654 to reserve a table at Convito Café or email us at convitocafe@gmail.com with your preferred date, time and number of people in your party.


             

Plaza del Lago
1515 Sheridan Rd
Wilmette, IL 60091
847.251.3654