Customer Reviews: Bariani California Olive Oil - 500 ml (16.9fl.oz.)
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I'm making myself tell what I would prefer to keep secret: Truly this is the best-quality,genuine article,cold-pressed (in small quantities)olive oil, made right here in the U.S.A. (California). People (including, in the past, myself)don't actually understand that even the olive oils imported from Italy now are sub-standard. Bariani, by contrast, is the nearest to what was consumed by the Greeks and Romans of long ago: simply cold-pressed in small batches, no heat is used, no other oils are used, no other additives are used.

I'm not a gourmet, instead I am a fat 51-year-old that tends to veer towards the boxed hamburger meals when desperate! This is not "snooty gourmets" liking their incidental odd-tasting items, Bariani Olive Oil is truly and simply a great product and I agree with all the other reviewers: EXCELLENT.

By the way, I do know the first clue that you are not buying a true olive oil is when the container is clear: true olive oil cannot be exposed to direct sunlight. Bariani uses a proper, imported, dark-green bottle for their very special product.

Even Olive Oil can get complicated: the majority of olive oils, imported and domestic, are heated, not 100% olive oil and taste terrible after tasting Bariani.

I also buy through the company website and by phone and these people are so kind and upstanding -- it's family owned and they intend to keep it that way.

The only concern I have is the day will come when Bariani may have to increase their prices due to the law of supply and demand...and I would still buy it!

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on October 17, 2007
The problem with most of today's olive oil is that it is rarely produced in the old way, which is more time consuming and expensive. Due to the increasing demand for olive oil, the trend has been to reduce production costs by moving toward more automation and concentration of production in ever larger installations. These modem factories extract more oil more cheaply, but their processing methods substantially reduce the nutritional quality of the oil.

To reduce costs, olives are machine harvested along with leaves and twigs. Olives that have dropped on the ground, which can be said to contain bad oil, are often mixed with the good ones. They are shipped in all kinds of containers, many of which are poorly ventilated, and heaped in large piles where the olives are stored for too long and often become moldy. The oil is then extracted in a continuous centrifuge where hot water is used to help separate out the oil.

Antioxidant polyphenols are soluble in water and are washed away in this process, thereby lowering the shelf life and the nutritional quality of the oil. Italy alone produces 800,000 cubic meters of waste water per year from this process. Because substantial amounts of antioxidants are washed away, factory produced olive oils have a short shelf life of only months, whereas real olive oil lasts for two to three years.

Most people think that by purchasing "extra virgin" olive oil they are getting a high quality oil. Unfortunately, in most cases, this is not true. It's more complex than that. A label reading extra virgin is no guarantee of quality. For one thing, nowhere does it say that extra virgin olive oil has to be made 100% from olives.

Lower quality oils can be refined to bring the acidity down so they can be labeled as extra virgin. But now the oil has been refined, and that's not what you want. That's why being labeled extra virgin is no guarantee of getting high quality oil, which has not been processed in ways that reduce its nutritional value. To complicate matters even more, the term "extra virgin" has no official meaning in the United States. The U.S. is not a member of the International Olive Oil Council. So, olive oil sold here can be labeled extra virgin without meeting the accepted international standards.

Another reason why you can't trust extra virgin olive oil is exemplified by a problem that manifested last year, and may turn out to be the biggest food fraud of the 20th Century. Despite the fact that details of this scandal have been published in Merum, a Swiss-German magazine, and in Italian journals such as Agra Trade, and the newspaper Gazzetta del Mezzogiorno, this information has been successfully suppressed and is known to only a handful. Investigators are gathering evidence indicating that the biggest olive oil brands in Italy have for years been systematically diluting their extra virgin olive oil with cheap, highly-refined hazelnut oil imported from Turkey. International arrest warrants have been issued and so far documents indicate that at least ten thousand tons of hazelnut oil are involved. As much as 20% hazelnut oil can be added to olive oil and still be undetectable to the consumer. In fact olive oil labeled "Italian" often comes from Turkey, Tunisia, Morocco, Spain, and Greece. Considering what has happened in Europe, where there are strict regulations, imagine what can happen in California where there are no regulations. Apparently, more oil is "produced" in California than there are olives available. The truth is, most of the extra virgin olive oil on the market does not supply all the nutritional value and health giving properties that we have a right to expect from olive oil.

The bottom line is that modem, factory-produced olive oil has been stripped of its health enhancing nutrients, and the task of selecting a high quality oil has been made very difficult.

Bariani olive oil is produced by the Bariani family on a small farm in the central valley of California. Their olives are grown without pesticides. They are hand picked from the trees, carefully washed and dried, and milled with a stone wheel within 48 hours of harvesting. It is pressed in a hydraulic press, collected in stainless steel vats, decanted, and bottled. This first cold pressed oil is the real stuff and retains all the natural flavor and goodness.
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on July 24, 2006
There is NO comparison! This is BEYOND 5 stars! All I can say is that if you are reading this, you MUST try it!!!

It is GREEN & tastes like OLIVES! It is raw, cold pressed-it is the absolute highest quality & the BEST TASTING OLIVE OIL EVER!!! No, I have no connection to the company! :) I originally purchased this oil from Eat Raw a few years ago & have been singing it's praise ever since! I honestly cannot eat another olive oil. I have when I have had no choice & it's just so noticable-anyone near me at the time will be hearing a dissertation on the complete and total superiority of Bariani! One taste & you will never want another olive oil! It's THAT good!!! I just had to tell someone... :) :) :)
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on February 3, 2006
When I learned about "good fats vs bad fats" I went on a quest to find the best olive oil. I wanted one that would be both good for cooking and taste great on it's own. After much research (and buying in local supermarkets) I came upon Bariani's web site. I have been ordering this olive oil now for four years and it is a staple in my home. I couldn't imagine cooking without it.
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on July 11, 2011
I noticed that a number of reviewers commented on the "bitterness" of the Bariani extra virgin olive oil. I tried out both their 2010 "early harvest" (green) olive oil and their regular fall 2010 olive oil. I found their green olive oil to have a stronger, grassy (they mention the high chlorophyll content, which you do get!) flavor, with a distinct bitter edge and peppery finish. This would be great for someone who gravitates toward a greener, bolder flavor and perhaps a more adventurous experience. I found it too bitter for my pestos though it worked just fine with roasted chicken, and I think would be great for dipping bread. Their regular extra virgin olive oil has a faint bitter, peppery finish, but overall a more neutral flavor -- good all around olive oil and a safer bet for those who are sensitive to bitter or stronger flavors.
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on November 20, 2006
This olive oil adds a freshness to every dish that you're bound to notice. It's true what the others are saying, this oil is different than most others. When I first got tasted it strait, was shocked at the resemblence to wheat grass juice and the bitterness that lingers in the back of your throat. Compared to my regular store bought EVOO's heaviness and richness, this one is clean and bright. But my first reaction was to write the seller and find out if my bottle tasted as it should or if I'd gotten a bad bottle. They wrote back saying that the grassy flavor and "peppery notes" (bitterness, in my book) comes from the relatively young olives. I was also impressed by the fact that I got this in Sept and it was bottled as recently as August, probably also responsible for the fresh taste. Getting this olive oil inspired me to try some other brands and I have found a very similar taste without the bitterness in the slightly less exensive Trader Joe's Australian variety of EVOO. Both are great when used in fresh dishes and shine best when they aren't cooked. My biggest question is, why aren't people reviewing more EVOO products on Amazon. The fact that this one is the only one who's following sings it's praises here should tell you that it's worth trying.
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on August 3, 2007
From gourmet chefs to raw vegans alike, this olive oil is the choice for anyone who simply wants the best. We don't carry it in my city, and I gladly special order it online because it's just that pure and great tasting.
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on September 15, 2011
I have been a Bariani's customer for couple years I think, don't even remember where I got the recommendation that it was a high quality olive oil, but I ordered directly from their website until now and have only used their olive oil ever since. I placed this order recently with amazon because it was actually cheaper than using Bariani's own website, go figure. As any extra virgin olive oil, this is not a product to use for cooking, it is very sensitive to high temps, so use it on you salad dressing, smoked salmon, to top off you pizza or anything you like. It is a very light and tasty olive oil.
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on December 18, 2014
EXCEPTIONAL QUALITY and AMAZING TASTE! I researched this product thoroughly before buying it. Even went so far as to contact the manufacturer personally. The owner spent at least 30 minutes with me and I learned so much about his family company. While it is not certified... IT IS ORGANIC! I learned a while back that the certification process for organic foods is so expensive for businesses, hence why the typical "certified organic" item is priced well above the conventional item in its category. This company's product does NOT use GMOs and the olives ARE organic! I was so happy to learn this and even happier to finally find my "go-to" organic EVOO from now on. Kudos Bariani!
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on September 10, 2012
This Olive Oil I discovered at a farmers market in San Fransico, and ever since then, it has been my most favorite. It tastes very olivey and fruity and doesn't have any weird smell or taste. in fact, this olive oil is delicious with just a piece of bread an nothing else. So of couse, using it on salads, bruchetta, anything you use olive oil for, this is the perfect one. I like that on the label it says when the olives were harvested and when it was bottled. I think that is a fancy touch.
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