The harvest is our busiest time of the year
Traditionally, in this area of Crete, the olives are harvested in late November mid-December. They range from all green in color to half green, half purple, to completely purple black.
We have chosen to harvest our olives earlier, in mid-October, in order to produce a greener, tastier and healthier olive oil. This optimum degree of ripeness gives our olive oil its assertive intense flavor and allows us to benefit fully from the high level of polyphenols present in the Koroneiki olive.
Custom holds that one last beneficial rainfall is necessary before the harvesting can begin. This rain boosts the olives.
Nets are carefully spread at the foot of the trees before the picking begins.
A team of six to ten people work in the groves from the early morning hours; two to four people equipped with rods gently comb the branches of the olive trees. The vibrating cylinder made with flexible rubber teeth at the top of the rod moves back and forth allowing the olives to drop from the branches, without being damaged. The olives fall onto the nets where they are gathered.
Before the transportation to the olive mill, a first sorting takes place, directly in the field, where most branches and leaves are removed.
The olives are taken to the mill within just a few hours of being picked, -four times a day-, in order to prevent any fermentation that can quickly occur in stored and stacked olives. Transportation takes place in gunnysacks; no plastic comes in contact with our olives. We are careful not to jam them, as to avoid any olives being crushed, with a maximum weight of less than 40 kilos per sack. As soon as the olives arrive they are carefully poured into a first stainless steel container that delivers them into a drum where a shower of water cleans the olives.
Then the olive oil making process begins. A maximum of 3 hours goes by between the harvest and the pressing of the olives. Legally, there is a 24h time frame. We have chosen to press the olives as quickly as possible after the harvest in order to ensure the freshest olives possible.