Enjoy meals with quality olive oil

Enjoy meals with quality olive oil

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Italians have a saying 'a tavola non si invecchia', which goes part waY to explaining the popularity of the Mediterranean tradition of a long lunch.

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Harvest time begins in April at the Moore River olive grove and then moves south to the Frankland River grove.

Harvest time begins in April at the Moore River olive grove and then moves south to the Frankland River grove.

ITALIANS have a saying 'a tavola non si invecchia', which goes part waY to explaining the popularity of the Mediterranean tradition of a long lunch.

The saying's literal translation is 'one does not age at the table'.

While not ageing may not be strictly true, medical science now understands that higher levels of natural antioxidants and monounsaturated fatty acids found in a traditional Mediterranean diet of long lunches is at least good for you.

With its regional capital Florence the heart of Italian culture and Renaissance art and architecture, the long lunch may well have been invented in Tuscany.

For Tuscany, stretching from the coast to the Apennine Mountains backbone of Italy, is home of the Chianti Valley, renowned for its olive groves and vineyards which produce two of the most important ingredients of any Mediterranean-style long lunch - fresh olive oil and an appropriately aged red wine, both with plenty of character.

Olives in the mist, sunrise at the Moore River olive grove.

Olives in the mist, sunrise at the Moore River olive grove.

Five generations of Tuscan merchants with a love of fresh produce - and presumably also long lunches - is the family heritage behind Western Australia's own premium locally-grown, locally-processed, cold-pressed Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

Only olives harvested from the family's own Frankland River Olive Company groves at Frankland River and near Moore River are used to produce Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

The olives are processed in the company's state-of-the-art facilities, strategically located near each grove so the freshly-picked olives are pressed at their prime and the quality of the oil they produce is the highest it can be.

Cold pressed means no heat is applied to the olives during processing to extract more oil, because heat would destroy the delicate flavours and aromas so prized in a quality extra virgin olive oil.

The extra virgin part of the product description means it is the freshest and tastiest it can be because the fruit is processed just once for its oil.

For some lesser oils the first pressings are reprocessed to obtain maximum oil, with volume, not quality, the production aim.

The Frankland River Olive Company started in 1999 and with the love and care lavished on its groves, the careful urgency to capture peak freshness and attention to detail in every aspect of its operations, Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil has been winning awards since 2003.

These include bronze and silver at the Perth Royal Show and in 2015 Best of State for WA in the Australian National Extra Virgin Olive Oil competition.

Only olives from its own groves at Frankland River south of Perth and near Moore River north of Perth are good enough for Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

Only olives from its own groves at Frankland River south of Perth and near Moore River north of Perth are good enough for Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

Perhaps a more telling indication of its taste, texture and quality than local awards is the fact Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil is exported to Italy and Spain - the very home of Mediterranean olive oils - among other places around the world.

Paul Letari heads the Frankland River Olive Company which produces Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil and is rightly proud of his family heritage and of his family's product.

"One thing is always true in Italian families, when it comes time to sit together and eat, you must relax and enjoy," Mr Letari said.

"When you do that, you will often still be talking and laughing, nibbling, dunking and sipping three or four hours later, which is why Italians say 'a tavola non si invecchia'.

"Since planting our first olive tree in Frankland River, we have been striving to produce the perfect olive oil and we believe our Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil is pretty close to perfect."

The recipe for Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil's distinctive olive fruit aroma and flavour, which makes it so good for dunking still-warm fresh-baked crusty bread in or for healthy cooking of a range of dishes from Mediterranean to Asian cuisine, is olives from two groves.

The distinctly different environments and soil types of Frankland River in the Great Southern and the Moore River region of the Wheatbelt north of Perth enable different varietals of olive tree to be grown which, in turn when combined with different harvest times, produces oils that have distinctly different characteristics.

The southern grove at Frankland River, dating from 1999, consists of more than 105,000 trees, mostly the Tuscan varieties of Leccino and Frantoio olives, grown on loamy soils and in a relatively cool climate that allows the fruit to develop gradually, delivering robust flavours, more antioxidants and a longer shelf life.

Extra virgin oils from this grove are strong and robust, with full peppery and pungent characters.

In 2005, the Frankland River Olive Company took over managing 160,000 trees at the Parmelia Grove in the Moore River region.

Olives grown here are mostly the Barnea variety from Israel as well as an exquisite Spanish variety Piqual.

Extra virgin oils from this grove are milder with more pronounced fruit characters.

Leading technology is used to ensure the olive trees in each grove are cared for and their fruit harvested at the highest standard.

"Our oil comes from olives that are 100 per cent grown, pressed and packaged at our own groves," Mr Letari said.

But, as he points out, growing healthy and bountifully productive olive trees is only the start to producing award-winning olive oils.

Frankland River Olive Company has spent more than $10 million on equipment and machinery to make the most of its olives.

"We are very proud of our 'tree to table' holistic and natural process which is why we can assure customers of the full traceability of our product, from where the olives were grown, to the final product," Mr Letari said.

"We pride ourselves on efficient harvesting, within optimum timeframes, which is why we have invested significantly into custom-designed harvesting equipment."

The Jingilli harvest starts in April each year at the Moore River grove first and then moves south to Frankland River.

Some of the harvesting machines have been imported from Italy and Frankland River Olive Company has designed and commissioned its own harvester.

The state-of-the-art processing facilities were built in 2004 near each grove to minimise the harvested fruits' exposure to the elements and maximise the quality of the oil - fresh fruit is the only way to produce top quality extra virgin olive oil.

Frankland River Olive Company's processing facilities are capable of processing up to 8500 kilograms of olives per hour and the packaging facility is scalable and versatile, with one standard line bottling up to 800 bottles per hour, or two million litres per season.

It is HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) and GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices) accredited and complies with international standards for its food safety management system for the growing, harvesting, production, packing and distribution of olive oil.

"All of our olive fruit is processed at our own facilities, with two phase centrifugation used to extract the juice from the olives," Mr Letari said.

"No refining process is necessary during the extraction - the end product is one of the best and purest extra virgin olive oils in the world."

As good Italian cooks or knowledgeable chefs will tell you, olive oil should be stored in a cool, dark place to preserve its quality, so Frankland River Olive Company's innovation does not end with harvesting and processing.

Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil is available in 250 millilitre, 375ml and 500ml screw-top dark bottles which can be conveniently stored in pantries and kitchen cupboards.

But its one, two and 10 litre product is packaged in casks which do not let light in, so do not need to be stored away in a pantry or cupboard.

For commercial users, Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil is also available in five litre tins and 20lt drums.

The Jingilli brand also includes premium cooking oil in 20lt containers and virgin olive oil in 3lt tins.

Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil is available in most Coles, Woolworths, IGA, Farmer Jacks and Re Store supermarkets.

Australian extra virgin olive oil is renowned for its unique low level of saturated palmitic acid and high level of mono-unsaturated oleic acid which is highly regarded for its health benefits.

It also contains natural antioxidants.

But if you want it to taste really good and enhance the flavours of a Mediterranean-style long lunch, then you simply have no alternative but to buy the best made here in WA, Jingilli Devine Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

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