OLIVE oil is one of the healthiest types of oil available in the market today. We use its different variants for different cooking needs – Extra Virgin Olive Oil for drizzling into salad dressings, Pure Olive Oil for sauteeing and stir-frying, and Pomace for frying. More than these variants, however, flavored and herb-infused olive oils have made it to the shelves of gourmet delis, health shops and major supermarkets. Now comes a whole line of luxury olive oils made by pressing olives and other ingredients together in the process of producing olive oil so that the flavors are strong and intrinsic in the oil. It’s called Oliviers & Co., and it’s now in Manila.
Stores Specialists Inc., a member of The SSI Group, which is one of the country’s leading specialty retailers, has brought Oliviers & Co. to the metro and opened its first store at the Central Square in Bonifacio High Street Central recently. The French-based company is renowned for its collection of gourmet olive oils, seasonings, and condiments developed using the best ingredients and top-notch processes. With 300 partner mills in France, Italy, Spain, Croatia, Greece and Portugal all committed to producing oil of superior quality, Oliviers & Co. is able to acquire only the best of the lot, and so its oil is revered by the world’s most acclaimed chefs. For 18 years, the company has staked its name on traceability and reliability, producing quality oils through watchful preparation. Each type of oil, which must strictly come from a single orchard, has its own specialized bottle or can, and on the label is written the place of origin (country and region), harvest date, tree variety and exact proportions of the components, which is even more stringent than the specifications written on the label of a bottle of wine.
Oliviers & Co.’s first oils were sourced from families and small cooperatives, and each type had its own story – from French immigrants planting olive trees in the 1950s to Lebanon’s widowed first lady asking company owner and CEO Albert Baussan for his help to modernize her country’s olive oil production. However, it was in 1998, with the arrival of sensory specialist and analyst Eric Verdier, that the brand solidified its reputation of imperturbable consistency and innovative product development. As Oliviers & Co.’s custodian of excellence, he implemented an extremely demanding criteria to ensure quality befitting the brand’s rich history and name – and he personally inspects everything to make sure it is all up to par. As in wine-making, Verdier tastes all the oils, and only the best pass his impeccable taste standard.
Though precision is repeated with every one of Oliviers & Co.’s mills, each mill is free to concoct its own local profiles. Master chefs around the world, such as Eric Frechon, Alain Passard, Michel Roth and Gerald Passedat have also contributed to the brand’s extensive variety. The company has an entire catalogue of vintage olive oils, rare allocations and grand crus. While its main product line consists of olive oils of high quality issued from selected orchards, Olivers & Co. has also expanded to include other luxury products, such as vinegars and condiments with original flavors, sweet and salted Mediterranean delights, plus a range of cosmetic products based on olive oil.
At the Oliviers & Co. store recently opened in Bonifacio Global City, all these signature products are available off the rack, and guests are encouraged to actually taste the products to see which ones they really like. Recipe cards are also provided for the taking to guide customers on how to best use the products. Other rare items, such as wooden chopping boards, bowls, spoon and fork combinations, and bottle rests, are also available. So, if you feel like cooking with truffle oil or dipping your bread in a basil olive oil and in a balsamic vinegar condiment, you know where to get them.
(Oliviers & Co. is located at Level 2 of Central Square, Bonifacio High Street Central, 5th Ave. corner 30th St., Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City; with telephone number 950-8211. It is open from Sundays to Thursdays, from 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m., and from Fridays to Saturdays from 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.)