Castello della Paneretta sits majestically on a Tuscan hillside. In fact, it's almost too typically Tuscan to believe, surrounded by fields of olive and cypress trees and rolling vineyards.
The oil is also typically Tuscan: full flavored, fantastically fruity, green, gorgeous, delicious. It builds to a peppery peak that hits you in the front and back of the throat. A two-cougher, so to speak. So thick it pours from the bottle like cream, so delicious I find myself thinking of more dishes to use it with.
The bottle is as compelling as the oil: tall, thin, housed in its own box. It makes a stunning gift.
The fall 2011 harvest of this extra virgin olive oil is quite assertive. The smell reminds me of green banana and freshly cut grass. The flavor is bold yet well-balanced: a little bitter, a little green, with a tingling peppery finish.
Zingerman's Food Tours is visiting Tuscany in October, 2013. Join us for a behind-the-scenes insiders' journey to traditional food makers like this.