`Course for Advanced Tasters at McEvoy Ranch - Olive Oil Times

Course for Advanced Tasters at McEvoy Ranch

Feb. 1, 2016
Alexandra Kicenik Devarenne

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At the idyl­lic and iconic McEvoy Ranch, the pro­ducer of one of California’s top olive oils, a group of olive oil devo­tees will meet on February 8th to hone their skills at tast­ing. Teaching the course on a rare trip to California is Agustí Romero of the Institute for Research and Technology in Agriculture (IRTA) in Catalonia, Spain.

Olive Oil Times read­ers may remem­ber Romero for his insights on malax­a­tion or from the pro­gram he over­sees to help Catalan mills improve their pro­duc­tiv­ity and qual­ity.

The class is an oppor­tu­nity for peo­ple who already have a basic pro­fi­ciency in olive oil tast­ing to expand their knowl­edge and skill, with a prac­ti­cal empha­sis on the causes of var­i­ous olive oil attrib­utes.

Olive oil pro­duc­ers, mer­chants and buy­ers are the intended audi­ences for the class that includes top­ics like Chemistry of pos­i­tive attrib­utes: Genetics, envi­ron­ment, ripen­ing and milling mod­u­la­tion” and Postharvest risks.” There are also seg­ments that will be of prac­ti­cal inter­est for the sup­ply chain such as Shelf-life: still an unsolved issue” and Useful analy­sis for trad­ing pur­poses.”

Each lec­ture will be accom­pa­nied by olive oil tast­ings to explain each sen­sory attribute and the rel­e­vance of tar­geted tast­ing pro­ce­dures. The class will dis­cuss prac­ti­cal olive oil chem­istry, pro­cess­ing chal­lenges, max­i­miz­ing qual­ity, adjust­ing the process accord­ing to sen­sory out­comes, future devel­op­ments in pro­cess­ing and boost­ing sen­so­r­ial analy­sis by volatile analy­sis.


The final ses­sion of the day will be a round­table dis­cus­sion of local issues and expe­ri­ences with California millers and oils that will draw on Romero’s expe­ri­ence work­ing with pro­duc­ers to improve their out­comes. This dis­cus­sion will be fol­lowed by a tast­ing of McEvoy Ranch wines spon­sored by local olive tree sup­plier, Novavine nurs­ery.

The class is co-spon­sored by McEvoy, IRTA and the Extra Virgin Alliance with addi­tional sup­port from Novavine and Eurofins lab­o­ra­tory. The pre­req­ui­site for the course is com­ple­tion of a basic olive oil tast­ing course, mem­ber­ship in a taste panel, or other olive oil tast­ing expe­ri­ence. There are a few spots remain­ing; to fill out an appli­ca­tion visit the McEvoy Ranch web­site.

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