“Iphitos, make not the fruit of an apple the prize of thy contest;

But on the victor’s head set a fruitful wreath of wild-olive”

 

Phlegon of Tralles, 2nd century BC

 

The oleaster (or Olea Oleaster) is sometimes known as the wild olive, is a very ancient type of olive and it does indeed look like a cultivated form of the cultivated olive.

I was lucky enough to be given some leaves to use as an infusion, as well as some of the oil produced from this beautiful tree. I had no idea you could use the leaves as an infusion so this was quite a discovery for me. We found it quite light, but with  a fresh hay aroma, a subtle honeyed flavour with a background of woody pine. The SD tea consultant commented, ‘brighter citrus top notes’. I’ve been having it every day now, whilst working, and it’s a soft, subtle flavour which grows on you. Interesting experiment.

The oil was very smooth with a distinctive bitter chilli kick at the end, not overwhelming just rather interesting.  It went particularly well in the tasting with toasted farmhouse bread.

 

This post is dedicated to Luigi Vergura – with thanks

 

oleaster olive oil - smooth and rich

oleaster olive oil – smooth and rich – with crunchy croutons 

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