Olio Nuovo ('new oil" in Italian) is like an extra extra-virgin olive oil. In Italy and California, when the olives are harvested and crushed in late October/early November, a special tasting is held and the growers select a blend from these first pressings to bottle up, unfiltered, and sell immediately as olio nuovo. (Normally, the oil is held in tanks for a few months to allow the sediment to settle and the flavor to mellow.) Much like Beaujolais Nouveau, the seasonality and limited availability of this delicious oil are a cause for celebration.
Read on for what makes Olio Nuovo so special and a few tips on how to cook with it.