` Lucca Goes Extra Virgin - Olive Oil Times

Lucca Goes Extra Virgin

Feb. 13, 2015
Luciana Squadrilli

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The beau­ti­ful town of Lucca, set near the Tuscan coast about a one-hour train ride from Florence, is mostly famous for the beauty of its old town cen­ter sur­rounded by the intact Renaissance-era city walls and for host­ing Italy’s largest comics exhi­bi­tion, every Fall.

But for three years now Lucca, that in 2014 joined the National Association of Olive Oil Cities (Associazione Nazionale Città dell’Olio), has also been known as a major oil des­ti­na­tion” thanks to the annual ExtraLucca event and the qual­ity of the olive oil pro­duced nearby.

Organized by Fausto Borella, an olive oil edu­ca­tor and founder of the Maestrod’olio acad­emy, the event is a sort of vil­lage fair involv­ing many of the city’s most evoca­tive loca­tions for tast­ings, work­shops, con­fer­ences and cook­ing demonstrations.

The ExtraLucca 2015 edi­tion run­ning this week­end — orga­nized under the patron­age of the Italian Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, of the Lucca Municipality and Milan Expo 2015 — will have a spe­cial rel­e­vance due to the dif­fi­cult 2014 harvest.

Fausto Borella

Usually, olive oil pro­duc­ers are men of few words; they let the prod­uct speak in their stead,” Borella said, but this year extra vir­gin in Italy is very lit­tle, and those who were able to bot­tle a good prod­uct will be out of stock by March. They will then be forced to speak, and to tell about their work and about the oil they made and already fin­ished. This is a good thing, since extra vir­gin needs to be nar­rated in its most ample sense, besides the tech­ni­cal aspects of production».”

Such is the aim of ExtraLucca, which will hold a con­fer­ence bear­ing the straight­for­ward title In March the qual­ity Italian olive oil will be fin­ished up.” 

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The city’s streets and build­ings — from the cen­tral via Fillungo to Villa Bottini, a beau­ti­ful man­sion from the Renaissance period — will host tast­ing stalls dis­play­ing olive oils, food and wine and the cook­ing demos where many famous chefs will show their recipes fea­tur­ing extra vir­gin olive oil as a spe­cial ingredient. 

On Saturday, February 13 the church of San Cristoforo will host the pre­sen­ta­tion of the Terred’Olio2015, an olive oil guide edited by Borella and the award cer­e­mony where the selected farms will receive the Corone’ (crowns) appointed to the best oils, accord­ing to the guide.


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