I am definitely biased but I think we have some of the world's best olive oils here in Tuscany. I have yet to try a locally grown and pressed olive oil that wasn't good (a far cry from the commercial ones you find at supermarkets).
While it is hard to find a bad olive oil, it is definitely easier to speak the praises of the ones we are lucky to find and sample! Case in point is the olive oil made by Podere Cunina.
Podere Cunina is located on rolling hills just outside to the east of Buonconvento, near Montalcino and as the area transitions from the Crete Senesi into the Val d'Orcia. The hills all around the agriturismo farmhouse estate offer some of the most incredible, awe inspiring views you can imagine – the ones you often see in postcards from Tuscany with rolling hills and cypress trees. A stay here is an incredible experience at one of their apartments, with the terrace just outside offering magnificent views throughout the day, but especially at sunset when the light is warm and the sky turns colors. Read my review about their apartments and activities here.
The stunning views from the farmhouse include the olive tree grove with 750 trees. In the spring, the flowering buds provides sparking white specks across the grove set at 250 meters above sea level, while in the fall the heavy branches are ready for picking the almost ripe olives. Harvest at Podere Cunina generally takes place over the course of October and the harvested olives are cold pressed every single day at a local olive mill.
The extra virgin olive oil at Podere Cunina is a blend of four Tuscan cultivars: Leccino, Moraiolo, Pendolino and Frantoio.
The bright florescent green of a just pressed oil changes to a gorgeous gold yellow in a matter of just a few weeks and, although the quality does not depend on the color, it is a pleasure to admire the golden color. Podere Cunina's EVOO is very fragrant, with tones of fresh grass, artichoke, almond and citrus undertones. It is definitely “spicy” and a bit bitter when it is fresh pressed, the polyphenols mellowing as the weeks pass. We found it be both flavorful as well as delicate, complementing and enhancing food without overpowering flavors.
How to get your hands on some of Podere Cunina's olive oil? The easiest is, of course, to visit the estate. But if you can't currently visit, the easiest method is to contact them directly and order direct from them. They ship worldwide.
The olive oil is offered in 250ml and 500ml glass bottles as well as in aluminum cans. The cans are also available in 3 liter and 5 liter sizes. As of 03/2021, these are the prices as we know them:
250ml: €7 (if you buy 6, special discount and only pay €35)
500ml: €12 (buy 6 and only pay €60)
3 liters: €45
5 liters: €75
Shipping cost is not included in the costs above as it varies depending on destination. You can pay with credit card or with bank transfer. To place your order, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to extra virgin olive oil, the Freddi family at Podere Cunina also produces honey and saffron. You can also purchase these along with oil directly from the family.
For more information on Podere Cunina in general, visit their official website.