`Italy's Monini Launches Australian Extra Virgin

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Italy's Monini Launches Australian Extra Virgin

Sep. 7, 2011
By Luciana Squadrilli

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Ital­ian olive oil brand Monini, based in Umbria, recently launched its new extra vir­gin Prim­is­simo.” This new range hails from the Aus­tralian estate in Hill­ston in New South Wales, where the Monini fam­ily planted olive trees imported from Italy in 2004 and 2005.

Prim­is­simo – which means the very first one” – is actu­ally the first olive oil of the 2011 har­vest to appear on the Ital­ian mar­ket, as Australia’s sea­sons (as well as har­vests) are inverted in respect to Europe’s. Monini’s Aus­tralian har­vest of the typ­i­cal Umbrian vari­eties Fran­toio, Lec­cino and Pen­dolino took place in April when the aus­tral win­ter began, while in Italy they are usu­ally har­vested between Octo­ber and Novem­ber.

The com­pany says its Prim­is­simo extra vir­gin has a medium intense fruiti­ness, with almond and green apple aro­mas, a har­mo­nious oil with a mod­er­ate pun­gency and a gen­tle hint of bit­ter­ness.

While the new prod­uct could be seen as a taunt in Italy where every­body expects the new oil” in the autumn, Prim­is­simo is mainly intended for the Aus­tralian mar­ket. How­ever 10 per­cent of the 350,000-liter pro­duc­tion has already been bot­tled and put on the Ital­ian mar­ket through Esselunga, one of the lead­ing Ital­ian retail store chains.

Euro­pean pro­duc­ers have lately been intro­duc­ing olive oil prod­ucts with New World ori­gins.

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Colavita launched olive oils made in Cal­i­for­nia and Aus­tralia, and Star Fine Foods, a divi­sion of Spain’s Borges Group, intro­duced an Arbe­quina from California’s Cen­tral Val­ley.

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