Olive trees have been in the Algarve for centuries. The craft of making olive oil has increasingly disappeared from the Algarve. Nevertheless, Olive oil is still produced in the Algarve. We have visited Monterosa, one of the most famous olive oil producers in the Algarve. Visit the orchard and end with an olive oil tasting. This olive grove is located near Faro in Moncarapacho. That is why it is a tip to visit if you have some hours to spend for your flight from Faro Airport.
A piece of Monterosa history
The history of Monterosa goes back to 1969. Detlev von Rosen moves from Sweden to Portugal to grow vegetables there. At the time, most vegetables in the northern countries of Europe were only available during the summer. Detlev produced these vegetables in the Algarve and sold them in Northern Europe. The mild climate of the Algarve is ideally suited for this.
It was successful, but logistics caused problems. As a result, the attention shifted to ornamental planting from 1972. The ornamental plants survived much better with longer transport. This market was further developed and he became one of the most important producers of ornamental plants.
The olive grove was created as a hobby by Detlev von Rosen. He himself laid out the first orchard. The olive trees have been found in the Algarve for centuries, but the craft of making olive oil disappeared more and more. In 2000 the challenge to produce its own olive oil started at Monterosa.
Excursion olive oil tasting
Monterosa A tour at Monterosa is a fun excursion. During the excursion you will get a tour of the orchards. During the walk you will be told about the history and the entire production process. You see everything from the orchard to the final end product. The process is taken very clearly step by step and it is explained which choices are made to obtain the highest possible quality. The picking season is in autumn, when there is also the most activity in the orchard.
At Monterosa, all olives are picked and sorted by hand. After picking, the olives are pressed as quickly as possible to achieve the best possible quality. The pressing is done with a press from Roman times, where they are ground in a granite stone mill into a kind of porridge. The oil is then extracted with more modern equipment, filtered and stored in stainless steel containers until bottled. Five types of olive oil are produced at Monterosa. Four of these are Verdeal, Maçanilha, Picual, Cobrançosa, which consist of the olive oil from only the olive variety of the same name. The fifth olive oil is a blend, Selection Premium.
Different flavors of olive oil
The flavors of the olive oil go from very soft and buttery to peppery / sharp.
Verdeal: The soft olive oil tastes almost like melted butter. Goes well with salads, tomatoes, bread, cold soups and use for vinaigrette.
Maçanilha: Still very soft but slightly more fruity. A fresh sweet oil. Goes well with salads, vegetables and toast.
Picual: Spicy and peppery with a slight bitter. Goes well with grilled fish, meat and vegetables. Our favorite with a fresh sandwich with some sea salt.
Cobrançosa: The most peppery olive oil. Very spicy and peppery, pungent. Goes well with meat and to give a vinaigrette extra spice.
You can taste all these olive oils above at the end of the excursion during an olive oil tasting. Which is great fun to taste and recognize the different flavors. This tasting is done from olive oil of the best quality.
Monterosa has won multiple awards. View an overview of the prices on the Monterosa website. Order the olive oil for at home here and register for the excursion and olive oil tasting at Monterosa.