As winter arrives in Mallorca and the tourists slowly disappear; just as everything seems to settle into a sense of calm, an exciting buzz begins as the olive harvest season awakens.
Across the island, and particularly in the Tramuntana mountains, thousands of olive trees, laden full, are ready to be picked, pressed and transformed into beautiful olive oil.
In December we assisted in the annual harvest at Casandra, a family owned estate in Sa Figuera, high up in the mountains above the Port de Sóller. Compared to a very small and disappointing 2016 harvest, 2017 was a great year for the family and a wonderful pay off for the huge amount of work they had put into the land over the year.
With over 500 olive trees on the property, the family also had their work cut out collecting and pressing the olives and it was wonderful to see family and friends come together to make the whole thing happen - as has been the custom for generations of families across the island. It goes without saying what an honour it was to then be asked to load the first bucket of olives into the press for the 2017 harvest.
To be able to take home my own hand picked and pressed Sóller oil at the end of the day was a true tick on a chef’s bucket list.
Now it's all about putting it to good use for the rest of the year!