Home to over 3 000 olive trees whose fruit produce award winning extra virgin olive oil and Kalamata and Noccelere de Belice table olives, Hidden Valley’s olive harvest is well underway!
Thriving in ancient, fertile granite soils and combined with the altitude and a strict regime of “working with nature”, as well as our resolve of sacrificing quantity over quality, the olive groves at Hidden Valley are responsible for delivering some of the finest olive oil (70%) and table olives (30%) for your enjoyment.
The 2016 harvest is characterized by high return olives for the production of olive oil. We are expecting about 20 ton from the 3 hectare groves in total.
Viticulturist, Daniël Roux, explains: “By keeping a close eye on the quality of the olives, optimum harvest time is established once the relationship between ripe and green olives has reached 40/60%. The green flesh of the olives extends a peppery aroma, whilst the ripe olives lend a fruitier flavour to the olive oil. The table olives are then handpicked and the oil olives are raked. The more gently the olives are treated, the better the resultant oil. The olive groves literally come alive at this time of the year, as the pickers’ cheerful chattering echoes through the estate.”
Daniël also has to carefully monitor the weather when making his decision to harvest. The weather at the time of harvest is of great importance and the right moment to start is just before the rainy, cold days of winter set in. Not only are these winter conditions not ideal for the actual picking of the olives but the moisture can cause the olives to spoil in their crates before they are even sent for pressing.
Of the total mass, on average, only 17% return in oil is obtained once the olives are pressed.
Immediately after harvest the trees are pruned to retain the balance between the branches that form the framework and the branches that carry the fruit to ensure an optimum yield for the next harvest.
Visit our Wine Tasting Centre to experience our delicious olives and olive oil…….