Since 5BC, olive trees were only found in the Eastern part of the Mediterranean, the “fertile crescent” as it was known in the day. Homer, the heralded Greek poet called it “liquid gold” and Grecian athletes would lather their bodies in it before races. To the people of the Mediterranean, it has been a source of magic, mysticism and wealth. These days olive oil is revered for being the healthier choice. It has been known to reduce chances of cancers and lower cholesterol and blood pressure. And besides making a great natural treatment for hair and skin, virgin olive oil can be used as a dressing for salads, as a drizzle on soups and most simply, with some flavourful balsamic as an appetiser for hungry guests.

4 things to look out for when buying olive oil

  1. Dark bottle or tin – olive oil denatures when exposed to light.
  2. “Extra virgin” on the label – means that you will be buying the best quality oil
  3. A harvest or sell-by date on the bottle – oil does not get better with time.
  4. An estate name that you can trust – check up on if the estate in question is registered.