Where does the best olive oil in the world come from? Wilmington, of course. Delaware-owned Olevano recently competed with 702 olive oils from 22 countries in the New York International Olive Oil Competition, taking home three top honors. For the fiercely contested “blended” category, Olevano Delicato earned a gold medal. In the Robust Blend Category, Olevano Fruttato Intenso extra virgin olive oil also won gold. Sixteen olive oil judges from 10 countries blind tasted the oils. “We’ve been talking with the family back in Olevano sul Tusciano, and many toasts have been made thanks to these awards,” says Olevano co-owner Tom DelleDonne. “Here in the U.S., our customers buy the delicato blend of Olevano First Cold Pressed Extra Virgin Olive Oil, but folks back in Italy get to enjoy both varieties that won awards.” Says co-owner Al Fierro, “It is satisfying to see that the commitment and passion we have toward producing and offering only the finest olive oil has been rewarded on the international level. We are very proud that our dear Olevano is in the spotlight. My grandfather probably never could have imagined his move to Wilmington would one day effect an international award for olive oil.” In 2003, DelleDonne and Fierro began producing and importing Olevano olive oil with their cousins in Olevano sul Tusciano. Olevano Importers, LLC, is the exclusive agent for this first cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil from the hills of Campania. Volcanic soil, natural irrigation unique to the mountainous terrain of Southern Italy, and a sub-tropical climate combine to make a perfect environment for producing exquisite olives. Olevano Olive Oil, which decades ago relied on donkeys to transport olives and turn the granite presses, is still hand-picked from trees that trace their roots back to the sixth century B.C. Olevano is well regarded by others, too. The extra virgin olive oil has received QVC’s “customer top rated” designation and was one of five items selected to compete in the Best Cooking Staple category as part of QVC’s 2012 Customer Choice Food Awards. Find Olevano at QVC TV and qvc.com, as well as olevano.com.
BYOB has a different meaning at the Hotel du Pont this week: Build Your Own Bordeaux. On June 7, BYOB in The Green Room, diners will be given the five base wines Bordeaux is made from (Cabernet, Merlot, Malbec, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc) to create their own stunning blends. Wines will hail from single-vineyard Franciscan winery sites. Christopher Bachman from Franciscan Magnificat will judge the results. Chef Keith Miller’s menu includes plenty of wine in the food. The first course of marinated grapefruit and arugula salad includes compressed tomato with Sauvignon Blanc. The second course is a lightly smoked scallop with shaved fennel and black currant with Cabernet Sauvignon, followed by pan-seared antelope tenderloin with black pepper grits, rosemary and hazelnut brittle and blackberry purée. â€¨Magnificat. Finish your meal with triple crème brie with vanilla and raspberry-boysenberry-dried cherry compote and plum gastrique. â€¨Magnificat. All that for $85. Sounds like great fun to us. hoteldupont.com
Vegging Out—In the Very Best Way
Vegetarians and the veg-curious should head to Epworth United Methodist Church on June 1 for Rehoboth Beach VegFest, a free outdoor festival celebrating the very best of vegetarian eating in and around the area. The festival features dozens of exhibitors, cooking demonstrations, speakers, and more. Learn about moral reasons for eating vegetarian, how to grill, plant-based living, teaching kids to eat well and cook well and more. Nage will dish out a delicious, several-course, vegan brunch the day after VegFest, with several of the VegFest speakers joining the fun. Learn more at rehobothvegfest.org.
Who was in on Rehoboth Restaurant Week last year? Let’s say it was nothing short of a who’s who, and it was such a rousing success, it’s back. Restaurant Week 2013 will happen June 2-8. Hit your favorite participating place for a delicious prix fixe dinner of $20 or $30 for three courses. From Italian to Irish to Asian, Latin and something in between—not to mention vegetarian and cutting-edge fare—there’s something for everyone. This year’s line-up isn’t final yet, but expect many return places from last year. They include Adriatico Ristorante & Cafe, a(MUSE.), é, Blue Moon, Cabo Modern Mexican Tequila Bar, Café Azafran, Catchers, Corner Grille, Cultured Pearl, Dogfish Head Brewings & Eats, Dos Locos Fajita & Stonegrill Restaurant, Eden Restaurant, Espuma, Hobo’s Restaurant & Bar, Irish Eyes Pub & Restaurant, Jake’s Seafood House, Jam Bistro, Lupo di Mare, Mariachi Restaurant, MIXX, Pig & Fish Restaurant, Planet X Café, Ristorante Zebra, Rigby’s Bar & Grill, Salt Air, Stingray Sushi Bar & Latin Fusion Grill, Stoney Lonen, Summer House and Victoria’s Restaurant. Then keep your eyes on the website for more as the event nears. For more, call 227-2772, or hit downtownrehoboth.com/downtown-happenings/restaurant-week.htm.
A Slice of Heaven
Heads up for June 8, which is when the Brandywine Food & Wine Festival happens at The Myrick Conservation Center in West Chester, Pa. The wineries of the Brandywine Valley Wine Trail join with local restaurants and other food purveyors to celebrate the best of the area. Stroll the grounds of Myrick Conservation Center—a heavenly slice of the fabled Chester County—while enjoying the food and drink, craft vendors and live music. Participating wineries include: Black Walnut Winery, Borderland Vineyard, Chaddsford Winery, Grace Winery, Kreutz Creek Vineyards, Paradocx Vineyards, Patone Cellars, Penns Woods Winery and Twin Brook Winery. To see who’s coming with food, check the website as the event draws near. It’s a fabulous day. (610) 444-3842, bvwinetrail.com