1. Q. What does Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) mean?
A. Olive oils are graded according to standards set by various organizations in different countries. Virgin olive oils are obtained from the fruit of the olive tree solely by mechanical means under conditions (including thermal) that do not lead to alterations in the oil and which have not undergone any treatment other than washing, decanting, centrifugation and filtration. No additives of any kind are allowed. Extra virgin is the highest grade of virgin and must also possess excellent flavor & odor, be free of defects and low in free fatty acidity content.
2. Q. What does first cold-pressed mean?
A. Most modern virgin olive oil production is accomplished with multi-stage automated stainless steel machinery and uses centrifugation to separate the liquids from the solids and so technically are no longer "cold pressed", but they are temperature regulated to prevent heat degradation of the oil.
The traditional method for extracting the oil & juices from the olives was to crush the olives with granite stones, mix (malaxing) the resultant paste to release the oils then spread the paste on woven hemp mats and use mechanical presses to separate the oil and juices from the solids, hence the moniker first cold-pressed. Oliflix still uses these traditional techniques.
Subsequent pressings using heat or chemicals can extract more oil but these techniques highly degrade the freshness, flavor and odor and would not pass extra virgin standards.
3. Q. What water source is used to grow the trees that produce the olives for Oliflix?
A. Seasonal rainfall. No other source of water is used. Antonio Rey Solé, the owner, believes that the natural stresses from drought improve the health of the trees and quality of the fruit.
4. Q. How old are the Oliflix olive trees?
A. They range from 1 to 1000 years old with an average age of approximately 300 years old.
5. Q. How are the olives picked ?
A. Oliflix olives are all hand picked to minimize bruising of the fruit and damage to the trees. Bruising directly affects the freshness, flavor and longevity of the olive oil.
6. Q. What equipment is used to make Oliflix EVOO?
A. Granite stones, hemp mats, hydraulic presses, paper filters, ceramic and stainless steel storage containers.
7. Q. How is the Oliflix EVOO stored?
A. After pressing, gravity separation and paper filtration, it is stored in an underground ceramic tank to decant residual sedimentation (racking) and then transferred to stainless steel tanks where additional sediment is purged before bottling.
8. Q. Why is it stored underground?
A. Since light exposure and warm temperatures are detrimental to longevity, Oliflix extra virgin olive oil is stored underground to maintain the freshness, antioxidants and polyphenols in the oil as well as to further decant the sediment.
9. Q. When does EVOO become rancid?
A. Rancidity is accelerated by contaminants in the oil (including organic sediment) and exposure to light, heat or oxygen. Olives are stone fruits and the oil does not break down as quickly as polyunsaturated vegetable oils do. Extra virgin olive oils are considered fresh and viable for a two-year period and are dated stamped, however well-stored, high-quality oils like Oliflix have been known to retain freshness for several years.
10. Q. What type of olives are used in Oliflix?
A. Oliflix uses a blend consisting of 60% Arbequina & 40% Empletre olives both green and ripe for outstanding flavor, odor and smooth taste while preserving a high polyphenol content and low acidity for long life.
11. Q. How should I store the Oliflix EVOO?
A. Oliflix is best stored well below 85 degrees Fahrenheit in a dark cabinet or room. It is not necessary to store olive oil in the refrigerator. Antonio Rey Solé, owner of Oliflix, humorously reminds customers that olive oil in the refrigerator, solidifies and is difficult to pour and use, until it re-liquifies at room temperature. Therefore a refrigerated olive oil is rarely used.
Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) FAQs
1. What makes Solana Gold ACV so special?A. Our Apple Cider Vinegar Contains the Veil of the Mother and is:
- Raw and Unfiltered
- Organic with the Veil of the Mother
- Aged for 3-years
- Exceptionally smooth
- Contains no preservatives
- From 100% organic apples
2. What is the Veil of the Mother?
A. The natural occurrence of amino acids and enzymes creates strand-like chains of connected protein molecules which are referred to as The Veil of the Mother.
Solana Gold's Apple Cider Vinegar maintains The Veil of the Mother and combines the natural goodness of apples with the amino acids and enzymes which are naturally created in the fermentation process.
3. Why isn't our ACV pasteurized?
A. Pasteurization removes delicate nutrients and enzymes that may constitute a major portion of the nutritional value of a particular food. Solana Gold's raw Organic Apple Cider Vinegar, unlike juices or ciders, contains no sugars which would be a growth medium for potentially harmful bacteria such as E. coli 0157:H7. In addition to this, the high acidic nature of Apple Cider Vinegar assures that none of these bacteria could exist or propagate.
4. What kind of apples are used in our ACV ?
A. We use eight kinds of apple varieties: Gravenstein, Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, Jonathan, Rome, Fuji, Greening and Granny Smith.
5. What parts of the apple are used to make ACV?
A. From the stem to seed, every part of the apple is used.
6. How is the ACV made?
A. The apples are pressed into a mush and filtered through organic rice hulls. The juice is then aged for three years to ensure proper fermentation.
7. What is the shelf life of ACV ?
A. ACV does not go "bad," it just gets stronger. Through aging, the enzymes and nutrients in the ACV become more pungent.
The Vinegar Institute conducted studies to find out and confirmed that vinegar's shelf life is almost indefinite. Because of its acid nature, vinegar is self-preserving and does not need refrigeration. And, while some changes can be observed such as color changes or the development of a haze or sediment, this is only an aesthetic change. The product can still be used and enjoyed with confidence.
Source(s): Per The Vinegar Institute - FAQ Link: http://www.versatilevinegar.org/faqs.html