The difference between ‘normal’ olive oil and extra virgin olive oil is the way in which the olives are processed. Extra virgin olive oil is obtained directly from olives which are cold-pressed as soon as possible after harvesting. This gives extra virgin olive oil a lower level of acidity and retains the full flavour and fragrance. It is delicious in salads, sauces and pastas, for example! Carbonell extra light and pure olive oil undergo further processing after the first pressing (they are purified and filtered), making them easier to heat to high temperatures without burning. The Carbonell varieties extra light and pure are therefore perfect for frying, roasting, grilling and deep-frying. Use Carbonell extra light if you wish to enjoy the healthy properties of olive oil without the characteristic flavour of olive oil in your dishes.
Based on strict European regulations, olive oil is divided into 4 grades of quality:
1.) Extra virgin olive oil:
Extra virgin olive oil is olive oil of the best quality (from the first cold pressing) and is therefore the most expensive. The acidity level may not exceed 0.8%. This olive oil has a rich flavour and full fragrance and is delicious used cold. Carbonell extra virgin olive oil has an acidity level of 0.6%.
2.) Virgin olive oil:
Virgin olive oil is a good olive oil with an acidity level of up to 2%.
3.) Olive oil:
This variety is known as “pure olive oil”. This olive oil has a more neutral flavour and a milder fragrance. It is a mixture of refined olive oil and “extra virgin” olive oil. This olive oil is perfect for ‘warm’ use such as frying and roasting, for example. This olive oil may have a maximum acidity level of 3.3%.
4.) Olive pomace oil:
This is the last oil to be extracted from the olive pulp, not by pressing but by other methods. This very poor quality olive oil is refined and flavoured with virgin olive oil. Carbonell does not sell this inferior grade of olive oil.