SICILIAN OLIVE OIL
Thanks to its mild Mediterranean climate, Sicily territory features extensive fruitful olive groves scattered all over the island. Oil production in Sicily began during the 5th century B.C. when Greeks started planting several olive trees which thrived fast, being Sicily territory extremely fertile. Those olive trees initially planted by the Greek, generated an extensive olive oil production in Sicily over the centuries.
As a matter of fact, Sicily olive oil business today accounts for 10% of all Italian olive oil production. Talking about quality, Sicily olive oil boasts 6 DOP (Protected Designation of Origin – similar to DOC for wines) olive oil growing areas – more than any other Italian region: Val di Mazara DOP (between Palermo and Agrigento), Valdemone DOP (Nebrodi and Madonie Mountains, including Reitano and Mistretta), Valle del Belice DOP (Mazzara del Vallo, Campobello, Castelvetrano and Partanna), Valli Trapanesi DOP (between Erice and Castellammare del Golfo), Monte Etna DOP (between Catania and Messina) and Monti Iblei DOP (between Ragusa and Syracuse).
Olive oil varieties coming out of Sicily territory are diverse. Among the most popular olive varieties cultivated in Sicily: Carolea, Nocellara, Biancolilla and Castiglione. Sicily olive oil is aromatic and fruity with a unique distinctive flavour.
Olives in Sicily are harvested earlier then other Italian regions usually between October and November. If you visit Sicily during that period and you are interested into learning all secrets of olive oil production from branch to bottle, just let us know as several of our accomodations produce and sell their own olive oil. We will be happy to set up a tasting of delicious Sicily olive oil for you.