Crete Olive Oil

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Taste Local Produce

Crete Olive Oil - the foundation of our healthy cuisine and longevity, find out where you can taste local produce in Kriti, explore active farms and ancient trees, find organic growers, millers and bottlers on the island.

Olive Trees - Heraklion CreteOlive Tree - Heraklion Crete

Chania Region

Estate at Terra Creta in Kolymvari just 27 km from Chania town

Crete Olive Oil - in the Chania region find farm at Terra Creta in Kolymvari just 27 km from Chania town. Take a one hour tour which will show the complete path of the olive from tree to table, at this picturesque farm with views to the sea and the White Mountains, which is a very large, professional and multi-award-winning olive oil factory.

Terra Creta Estate in Kolymvari - view over olive groves to White MountainsTerra Creta Estate in Kolymvari, Chania

Also in Chania are some of the oldest olive trees in the world, indeed so old that they have been declared a 'natural monument' or 'Monumental Olive'. The trees are just outside of the village of Ano Vouves, just 5 km inland from this estate.

Visit the Olive Tree Museum which protects the ancient olive tree of Vouves, said to be the oldest olive tree in the world. The museum holds the history of the olive culture in Crete, with many different exhibitions. including olive farming equipment, olive storage jars and wood-working tools.

Crete Olive Oil Bottle

Rethymnon Region

Crete Olive Oil - in the Rethymnon region find three generations farming olives at Melidoni just 31 km from Rethymnon town. At Paraschakis Olive Oil Farm you will meet the Parachakis family and see a locally owned and run family operation, in the traditional village of Melidoni.

Paraschakis Olive Oil cans - Crete

Combine this visit with a comfortable drive around the countryside to see Margarites Village and the beautiful and historic Arkadi Monastery, these are both close to the Amari Valley where you could stop for lunch at one of the small village tavernas and still enjoy your leisurely drive back to Rethymnon.

Heraklion Region

Fresh olives just picked - in the basket

Crete Olive Oil - in the Heraklion region join an 8 Day Olive Harvest and History Tour with accommodation in two different villages, experience two olive groves with a variety of olive types in the company or a specialist agriculturist and the farmers.

Assist in the harvest and enjoy picnic lunches in the groves. Visit local archaeological sites, enjoy organic local meals, pick nutritious wild greens with a villager, see the olive milling process and see the making of raki at a rakokazano or still.

More information and bookings for this Olive Harvest Tour...

Koronekes Olive Farm near Archanes Village in Heraklion is less than 12 km from Heraklion town centreKoronekes Olive Farm near Archanes Village in Heraklion is less than 12 km from Heraklion town centre

Crete Olive Oil - at Koronekes Olive Farm you can visit one of the largest olive farms in the region of Heraklion and attend tastings on the farm.

Here the Koutoulakis family has created a beautiful family estate, perfect for visiting and learning all about the local olive farming, harvesting, processing and bottling, and of course, tasting!

The farm is located close to Spilia village, half way between Knossos Palace Aracheological Site and Archanes Village, in an area rich with wineries and local tavernas, within easy driving distance of Heraklion Town of only 11 km.

Bookings are required for tours and tastings.

Koronekes Olive FarmKoronekes Olive Farm

Crete Olive Oil - Lasithi Region

Monumental Olive Tree in LasithiMonumental Olive Tree in Lasithi

The Olive Tree of Azorias - this ancient olive tree is near the village of Kavoussi and the ancient site of Azorias in eastern Crete. This 3500-year-old tree is preserved as a natural monument. Leaves from its branches were used in ceremonies of the Greek Olympic Games in 2004. The diameter of the tree is nearly 5 m.

Crete Olive Oil - in the Lasithi region visit the 'Cretan Olive Oil Farm' near Elounda jus 3 km from Agios Nikolaos. You can experience the following for very low fees as this is a family friendly farm

  • Farm Visit
  • Guided Tour of the Farm
  • Ceramic Lesson
  • Cooking Lesson

Make sure you give plenty of notice if you intend to visit for a pottery or cooking lesson, contact prior to visiting. See the donkey and chickens, sample home-grown vegetables and local honey. See the making of raki or tsikoudia, a strong clear spirit made from grapes.

The still for distillation of raki or rakokazano at Cretan Olive Oil Farm near Agios NikolaosThe still for distillation of raki or rakokazano at Cretan Olive Oil Farm near Agios Nikolaos

Ancient Olive Trees

Photographer Manolis Tsantakis celebrates the ancient olive trees of crete with his work shown in this intriguing video, with music by Mikis Theodorakis.

How to Taste Olive Oil

The best way to taste olive oil is to drink it. Here is how to do this and what to look out for:

  • Pour a little bit of olive oil in a (preferably) dark glass
  • Warm the glass in your hand to release the smalls of the oil, hold the glass with one hand and cover it with your other hand for a couple of minutes
  • Then smell the oil first, by putting your nose into the glass
  • Do you smell fresh-cut grass, cinnamon, tropical fruits or other aromas of ripe or green olive fruit? 'Fruity' is a good way to describe good olive oil
  • Then sip just a little, together with some air, swirling it in your mouth, across all parts of your mouth, with your lips closed
  • This allows for 'retronasal' tasting which, beleive it or not, provides a whole new dimension of taste perception
  • Between samples of oil, eat some plain bread or an green apple slices, or clear or sparkling water, to clear the palate
  • Consider the characteristics of the flavours: pepperiness, pungency, fruitiness, bitterness, or blandness. Can you taste herbaceousnnes, or is it buttery, floral, almond, apple, grass, or citrus?
  • You are looking for freshness, fruitiness, pungency and and bitterness which are all positives for a good olive oil, and be wary of old oil or rancidity

In addition, taste the same olive oil with food. If you are at home you might like to try this with any of the following; warm boiled potatoes, fresh mozzarella, ripe tomatoes, slightly toasted warm bread, salad greens or cooked vegetables.

You might like to make up your own tasting notes such as:

"mmm, it tastes green with a herby nose of green grass, rocket, green tomatoes and mown hay" Just kidding!


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