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Nudo – straight from the grove

I recently had the good fortune to be on the receiving end of some exquisite products from a company called Nudo Italia, courtesy of the kind folks at YC Media.  Nudo is a family-run co-operative between nine small, olive producers in small hilltop village in the Marche region of Italy.  Best known for its unique Adopt-an-Olive-Tree program and superior first cold pressed extra virgin olive oil, Nudo also offers and produces a range of artisanal Italian products and hand crafted flavored olive oils.

I was intrigued by the idea of adopting an olive tree and “owning a little part of Italy” (since that’s the closest I will get to owning property there!).  The way the program works, instead of just buying their olive oil, by adopting a tree, you can choose a specific olive variety, follow the progress of your tree for one year, support the local Italian family farmer, and (literally) taste the reward of your investment.

Once you adopt a tree from Nudo, you or the gift recipient will receive:
•    A personalized adoption certificate and information booklet that describes the tree,
•    Four 500ml tins of first cold press extra virgin olive oil from the tree,
•    Three 250ml tins of infused extra virgin olive oil (i.e. lemon, chile, orange) in the fall (mid-Oct),
•    An open invitation to come and visit, hug or water the tree in person.

The adoption and products cost $109.00 (plus shipping), which, for what you receive, I think is pretty reasonable. A piece of Italy?  Priceless!!!

If it’s instant gratification you are after, Nudo also offers a beautiful (and beautifully packaged) range of artisanal Italian products and hand crafted flavored olive oils including fiery chili, luscious stone ground lemon, and mouth-watering mandarin created from Nudo’s from Le Marche olives and Sicilian citrus and herbs each season ($12 for a 250ml tin).  To complement these oils,  Nudo also sources incredible antipasti from Sicily, sott’olio preserves from Torino and handmade jams and vinegars from local families in Le Marche.

I haven’t yet had a chance to try all the products in my goody box but have already fallen hopelessly in love with the Olive Oil Stone Ground with Real Lemons.  According to the website, within hours of being picked, these Sicilian lemons are driven at breakneck speed to our press where they’re stone-milled together with our olives. As for the olives, we make sure we use late harvest ones which have a subtler flavour, allowing the lemons to burst through for their moment in the spotlight. This isn’t like other flavoured oils where an extract is added later. In this, the lemon flavour is deep and fresh. The lemons and olives are truly joined at the pip.

The packaging suggests it’s “ideal drizzled on salads, white meats or fish” but I reckon it is going to be my olive oil of choice for the summer.  I already know it will feature in this pasta dish that is a regular in our dinner rotation over the summer and I used it with Les Petits Chefs this week in the salad dressing with lemon juice for a huge burst of lemony flavour.  I also used it in a Goat Cheese Salad with Lemon Poppyseed Dressing inspired by one I found over at Healthy Delicious. Oh my. This was absolutely amazing. I used it in both the dressing and to fry the goat cheese rounds and it was one of the best things to come out of my kitchen in recent times.

Now the great news is that as of June, Nudo will ship from the US (vs. Europe), so for those of you who don’t want the commitment of a tree adoption (or are impatient to taste the products!), this means you can now hand pick Nudo’s specialty Italian products to purchase separately.  Whether you are looking for a selection of handmade Italian bounty or have a craving for Nudo’s delectable extra virgin olive oil, their products are great as both gifts and pantry additions.

Nudo has also created a number of tantalizing gift sets.  These can be purchased for $45 (plus shipping) and wouldn’t they make a GREAT Father’s Day gift???

The Chili Lover Gift Set
o    One 250 ml tin of Nudo’s Chilli extra virgin olive oil
o    Organic chilli salsa
o    Sweet chilli jam
o    Handmade penne from a local artisanal producer, near the Nudo groves
o     Recipe booklet

Organic Essentials Gift Set
o    One 500ml tin of Nudo’s first cold press organic extra virgin olive oil
o    Organic Pesto
o    Organic Artichoke Hearts marinated in olive oil
o    Organic Capers marinated in olive oil
o    Organic Sun Dried Tomatoes marinated in olive oil
o   Recipe booklet

To learn more about Nudo, adopt a tree, purchase oils or other Nudo products, visit: www.nudo-italia.com

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30 Responses to Nudo – straight from the grove

  1. Belinda @zomppa June 11, 2010 at 07:23 #

    What an interesting idea? I love it! Does it really taste better than other olive oils that it’s worth it? How to sample???

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite June 12, 2010 at 15:12 #

      Yes I would say it is worth the price, though I don’t find it any more expensive than others we buy. I also love the idea of supporting the company as I thi they are doing wonderful thinkgs!

  2. Jenn June 11, 2010 at 08:11 #

    What a cool idea to do an Adopt an Olive Tree program – I love it! And Mardi, I am DROOLING over that salad – fried goat cheese and asparagus??? I want one!

  3. Lauren @ Health yDelicious June 11, 2010 at 08:31 #

    I’ve heard of them before, and it’s such a cool concept but I would never be able to go through that much olive oil. :(

    Those gift packs look incredible though and that salad looks mighty tasty. ;) I bet it was great with the goat cheese fried in the lemon oil. Wow.

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite June 12, 2010 at 15:04 #

      You should just get some of the olive oil then an dues it for dressings or cooking… So fab! And thanks for the inspiration!

    • Brita June 15, 2010 at 20:17 #

      Hi Lauren – they just began shipping form the U.S., so you can order little tins of the olive oil on their own now, don’t have to commit to the whole adoption. Hope you’re well! ~Brita

  4. Barbara @ VinoLuciStyle June 11, 2010 at 09:42 #

    Oh Mardi, you know I want some…of everything. What an amazing concept. I love specialty olive oil so much. As with my transition from margarine to butter MANY years ago, at first it was a taste I couldn’t quite wrap my arms around but now? The arms are wrapped and hugging and it’s a staple in our home…heading over to check out their website now!

    And that salad: Kudos to you and Lauren; looks wonderful.

  5. Paula - bell'alimento June 11, 2010 at 09:52 #

    I LOVE this company. What an amazing unique concept to adopt a piece of Italy! And YES their olive oils are TOP notch! I’ve tried the Chili infused Extra Virgin Olive Oil and let’s just say it didn’t last long! Fantastico!

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite June 12, 2010 at 15:03 #

      Well now if YOU approve, I know it must be the real deal! Seriously though, I am so impressed with the whole concept!

  6. Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction June 11, 2010 at 11:29 #

    Wow… Looks like a great company. I always love trying new olive oils, so I’ll have to pick some up!

  7. Jason Phelps June 11, 2010 at 12:25 #

    I have been playing around with infused olive oils at home, but hadn’t thought of citrus or chilies, YET!

    Thanks for the good information on this product.

    Jason

  8. Fuji Mama June 11, 2010 at 18:02 #

    I just LOVE the adoption idea! What a fabulous way to support an artisanal industry! I’ve heard that Nudo olive oil is superb! That salad looks absolutely divine–I’m a bit of a slave to goat cheese, what can I say? I can’t wait to hear about what you do with the rest of your goodie box!!

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite June 12, 2010 at 14:52 #

      Rachael you would love these products I think and yes the salad is just like ones you get in cafés in Paris…

  9. Magic of Spice June 11, 2010 at 18:56 #

    Great post! Love the adopt a tree and will be checking it out:)

  10. 5 Star Foodie June 12, 2010 at 00:32 #

    What a neat concept and the olive oils sound terrific! I will definitely check Nudo out! Thanks!

  11. Mary Luz June 12, 2010 at 12:28 #

    Sounds DIVINE and like a fabulous idea. Stone ground Sicilian lemons in olive oil? Now we’re talking! mMMMMM!

  12. Megan Gordon June 13, 2010 at 03:04 #

    Love the idea of the adopt a tree program! If I didn’t already have my father’s day gift, I’d spring for this. But good to know about…thanks, Mardi!

  13. Christine @ Fresh Local and Best June 13, 2010 at 14:04 #

    I am impressed with the concept of Nudo’s olive oil as well. Love that you featured Lauren’s recipe of fried goat cheese and poppy seed dressing! ;)

  14. Alison June 15, 2010 at 11:38 #

    I love the Adopt-an-Olive-Tree program! What a great idea.

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