Priorat county olive oils
Geological characteristics, limestone soils, slate-based soils and granite, coupled with extreme temperatures (hot summers and cold winters) are all favourable factors for the cultivation of the olive tree. All these factors give the olives their own distinctive taste and aroma which are unique to the Priorat region.
The most commonly found olive variety in the Priorat is the Arbequine variety. It was introduced in the 16th centry by the Duke of Medinaceli. There are also examples of other varieties in the Priorat such as Farga, Rojal, Morrut and Sevillenca.
Nowadays Priorat olive farmers have opted for different methods in cultivation olives. We can find farms which use the conventional method, farms which use the organic method (in Cabacés and Ulldemolins) and others who use the integrated methos (Ulldemolins). Each method produces its corresponding olive oil which are available for tasting here in the Priorat.
The olive oil produced in the Priorat transmits the intensity of this region which nestles between the Baix Camp county and the Garriques and Terres de l'Ebre regions. They are similar to these regions due to geographical proximity, but they still retain a certain personal characteristic only found in the Priorat. The olive oil produced here is protected by the Siurana quality assurance mark (DOP Siurana).
The extra virgin olive oil designation of origin or quality assurance mark indicates that the olives milled here are done using purely mechanical methods and are in effect fresh olive juices. These fresh juices conserve their aroma and taste of the original fruit. Many medical scientists are convinced that extra virgin olive oil is beneficial for our health. It helps to prevent circulatory diseases and reduce cholesterol in our blood. It also slows down the effect of aging of our cells and also helps to keep a check on diabetis.
The numerous prizes and awards which Priorat producers have earned over the years, such as the Románico essencia prize, Ecoviure, Fio Mora d'Ebre trade fair award, gold medal from Radio Turismo Cata Nacional de aceites, Silver Medal Los Ángeles Country Fair etc. prove the importance of the work of the Priorat olive farmers. This work starts in the fields, continues in the oil mills and finishes in the bottle. The result is a small treasure: Priorat Extra virgin olive oil.