Orobailén
A pro­mo­tional project unit­ing the Spanish regions of Catalonia, Valencia and Aragon — where for­tune is said to have favored the largest con­cen­tra­tion of mil­len­nium olive trees — has won first prize this year in the Spanish Association of Municipalities of the Olive Tree (AEMO) awards for spread­ing the cul­ture of olive oil.

“Taste the oil from a tree under which Caesar may have taken his siesta on any given day dur­ing his Spanish cam­paign — that’s a mes­sage that makes a major splash in a New York City restau­rant,” AEMO said in announc­ing the win.

Under the Millennium Olive Trees and Olive Oil project by the Commonwealth of the ‘Taula del Sénia’ — which com­bines 27 munic­i­pal­i­ties around the river Sénia — the three regions use their leg­endary olive trees to enhance sales of their olive oil and gen­er­ate wealth.

The “com­pact, excel­lent and orig­i­nal project” had enhanced not only the pro­mo­tion of extra vir­gin olive oil but regional gas­tron­omy and olive oil-​related tourism, AEMO said.

In award­ing sec­ond place, it praised the pas­sion­ate pro­mo­tion of olive oil by Tomiko Tanaka, “a Japanese woman who from Seville has been spread­ing the essence of olive oil to south east Asia.”

And a fur­ther prize went to Agustí Serés, the dri­ving force behind the museum his fam­ily has lov­ingly cre­ated at the restored 100-​year-​old olive oil mill Ca l’Agustí in Lleida, Catalonia.

AEMO also recently announced the 2012/​13 recip­i­ent of its award for Spain’s best olive oil mill — Galgón 99, pro­ducer of the Mario Solinas qual­ity award-​winning Orobailén extra vir­gin olive oil.

The mill impressed with its well-​equipped and impec­ca­bly hygienic stain­less steel facil­i­ties, rig­or­ous qual­ity rat­ing of incom­ing olives, and painstak­ing pro­duc­tion process, while its olive oil did so with its wealth of nuances, AEMO said.

Runner-​up was Córdoba’s Aroden mill, maker of the another multi-​award win­ning extra vir­gin olive oil, Cladivm.

And Córdoba is also the loca­tion of the win­ner of the prize for best mas­ter miller — Alberto del Moral, of the Sucesores Hermanos López mill, behind the Morellana olive oil brand.

Del Moral’s scrupu­lous labor starts with scrutiny of the arriv­ing olives, a watch­ful eye over all parts of pro­duc­tion, espe­cially tem­per­a­ture con­trol, and the main­te­nance of the premises in a state of max­i­mum hygiene.

“Alberto loves his work and does it with pas­sion and total ded­i­ca­tion even while work­ing all kinds of hours dur­ing har­vest,” AEMO said.



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