Our Favourite Local Olive Oils of 2021

Words: Crush

Every year, we round up our favourite local olive oils of the season and every year we are blown away by the quality of local oil available in South Africa. Seriously, if you’re not using local olive oil, you are truly missing out on what our country has to offer in terms of artisanal, high quality EVOO (extra virgin olive oil).

EVOO Production in South Africa

South Africa is fortunate enough to have regions with a unique Mediterranean climate without actually being in the Mediterranean. This allows olive oil producers to produce olive oil on par with products you’ll find in Italy, or Greece. There is no need to buy imported olive oil, despite the many imported products you’ll find on the shelves in supermarkets. Next time you’re out of EVOO, have a look at our list of our top local olive oils of 2021 and #supportlocal.

Babylonstoren Extra Virgin Olive Oil

The ultimate pantry go-to, Babylonstoren’s Extra Virgin Olive Oil begins and concludes its journey on Babylonstoren farm before making its way into your kitchen. Made from several olive varieties that are grown in the sun and soil on the slopes of the Simonsberg Mountain; the entire process takes place under the expert care of their “olive oil sommelier” Klaas Stoffberg and his team – from traditional hand-harvesting to cold-pressing to decanting into their beautiful and uniquely designed tins.

Both their Frantoio Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Babylonstoren Extra Virgin Olive Oil stand out as favourites on the market at the moment.

Frantoio Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Considered one of Italy’s most noble olive varieties and deeply connected to the Tuscan landscape, the local Frantoio crop yields this very special single variety extra virgin olive oil. It has a distinctive, intense green hue with golden sheen. The unique fragrance is characterised by dried herbs, floral tones, almonds, green apples and freshly cut grass. Delightfully piquant, the flavour of Babylonstoren Frantoio Extra Virgin Olive Oil is distinguished by a robust but pleasant peppery, bitter taste.

Origin: On the slopes of the Simonsberg Mountain between the areas of Franschhoek, Stellenbosch and Paarl.
Style: Cold-extracted, medium style.
Cultivar: Frantoio
Tasting Notes: Dried herbs and nuts on the nose, with gentle bitter and peppery notes as the oil passes onto the back of the tongue and into the throat.
Price: R150 per 500ml
Recipe Inspiration: Finish this Pork Ragu with Pappardelle with a drizzle of Babylonstoren’s Frantoio EVOO.

Babylonstoren Extra Virgin Olive Oil 

Babylonstoren’s popular Extra Virgin Olive Oil Blend is made from five olive varieties grown on the farm and has a gentle aroma with notes of florals and fresh herbs, most markedly mint. A nutty start on the palate runs into the pleasantly bitter and peppery taste, for which true cold-extracted, fresh-from-harvest extra virgin olive oil is celebrated.

Origin: On the slopes of the Simonsberg Mountain between the areas of Franschhoek, Stellenbosch and Paarl.
Style: Cold extracted, medium style.
Cultivar: Blend
Tasting Notes: A good mouthfeel with nuts and herbs on the palate followed by medium intense bitter and pepper flavours.
Price: R130 per 500ml
Recipe Inspiration: Prepare this Vegan Mixed Grain Pulse Salad dressed with Babylonstoren EVOO.

shop.babylonstoren.com | Facebook | Instagram

RIO LARGO Extra Virgin Olive Oil

rio largo EVOO

RIO LARGO Olive Estate produces a bespoke, international award-winning extra virgin olive oil. Nick Wilkinson, Master Miller UC Davis USA 2015, produces RIO LARGO Olive Oil on his private estate on the banks of the Breede River in the Western Cape. The Italian style cultivars of Coratina, Frantoio and Leccino, and FS 17 are grown, hand-picked, produced and bottled to order, contributing to RIO LARGO’s farm-to-table philosophy.

RIO LARGO sells their premium product in 500ml, 1 or 2 litre decanters with an easy-twist top that prolongs the freshness and delicious flavours of their award-winning EVOO.

rio largo olive oil

Origin: Scherpenheuwel Valley alongside the Breede River
Style: Medium
Cultivar: Coratina, Frantoio and FS 17
Tasting Notes: Clean fresh aroma; green vegetal notes of artichokes, green tomato, mixed herbs and snap peas with a lovely almond nuttiness on the palate. Good clean mouth feel with balanced polyphenols giving a wasabi and white peppery kick that lingers enticingly.
Price: On application

Recipe Inspiration: Try this Zucchini and Ricotta Lasagna prepared and finished with RIO LARGO’s Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

riolargo.co.za | Instagram | Facebook

Vesuvio Estates

vesuvio estatesVesuvio Estates, based in Paarl, is one of the oldest and largest olive estates in South Africa, with 480-hectares of olive trees, rooted in tradition and history.

Steeped in Italian heritage, Vesuvio Estates was founded in 1996 by the well-known olive oil industry family, the Dotoli’s. Their tradition of expertise and excellence in olive oil helped the Dotoli family pioneer, energise and expand Vesuvio Estates to an award-winning olive oil farm. Their forward-thinking approach has resulted in a large, state of the art, quality-controlled cold extraction facility that produces international award-winning Vesuvio Extra Virgin Olive Oil from the fine fruits of South African soil.

This high quality, international award winning extra virgin olive oil is a perfectly balanced, rich, creamy aromatic oil with fresh, green, herbaceous flavours and a mild, appropriate pepperiness. It’s suitable for all dishes and for general cooking and baking.

vesuvio EVOO

Origin: Paarl
Style: Mild 
Cultivar: Manzanilla, Frantoio, Kalamata, Mission, Leccino, Coratina, Picual, Koroneiki, Arbequina
Tasting Notes: Perfectly balanced, rich, creamy aromatic oil with fresh, green, herbaceous flavours and a mild, appropriate pepperiness.
Price: R75 per 500ml
Recipe Inspiration: Enjoy this Roasted Mushroom, Chorizo and Old Brown Sherry Soup with a finish of Vesuvio Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

vesuvio.co.za | Instagram | Facebook

African Gold Extra Virgin Olive Oil

african gold olive oil

African Gold Extra Virgin Olive Oil is a celebration of local. Born of the fertile South African soil, their olives are sourced from local farms across the Western Cape. African Gold not only focuses on celebrating local produce, but also celebrates local communities by aiming to create more job opportunities and improving South Africa’s future.

Invigorated with the vibrant South African culture and spirit, this premium olive oil is perfect for finishing meats, drizzling over vegetables, pasta and bread but also tame enough for your favourite salad.

Origin: Western Cape
Style: Medium
Cultivar: Blend
Tasting Notes: A well-balanced, medium intensity extra virgin olive oil with a herbaceous taste profile and moderate peppery finish.
Price: R134.99 per 500ml
Recipe Inspiration: Try African Gold’s Extra Virgin Olive Oil with these Spinach, Ricotta and Tomato-stuffed Chicken Breasts with Parmesan Crust.

africangoldoil.co.za | Facebook | Instagram 

Ubuntu Extra Virgin Oil

ubuntu EVOO

Ubuntu Extra Virgin Olive Oil is a boutique high quality premium extra virgin olive oil by Loyiso Manga. Ubuntu is the first black-owned olive oil company in South Africa, and it draws inspiration from the term ‘Ubuntu’, meaning having compassion and respect for humanity. Loyiso is a young, aspiring farmer and buzzing ‬agri-preneur and is passionate about EVOO, with his focus on it’s remarkable health benefits and incredible versatility in cooking.

Origin: Wereldgeluk Olive Estate
Style: Medium
Tasting Notes: Aromas of green herbs, roasted vegetables tomatoes and green banana. Palate of chicory and radicchio with a moderate lingering chilli spice and nutty aftertaste. Balanced, harmonious and complex.
Price: R130 per 500ml
Recipe Inspiration: Try these Roasted Carrots with Carrot Granola and Carrot Purée

ubuntuevo.com | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

Willow Creek Olive Estate

willow creek extra virgin olive oil Willow Creek Olive Estate is situated in the picturesque Nuy Valley in the Western Cape region of South Africa. The estate is blessed with terroir and climate perfectly suited for the cultivation of olives. With groves consisting of approximately 155 000 olive trees on roughly 193-hectares of land, Willow Creek Olive Estate is the proud local producer of award-winning extra virgin olive oils, olive oil blends and a delicious range of olive-based products. Their Estate Blend Extra Virgin Olive Oil is a blend of Frantoio and Mission cultivars harvested at a half-ripe stage with a medium fruity character.

willow creek EVOO

The Estate Blend’s smart bottling and patented nozzle allow for portion control which means not a single drop of EVOO will go to waste. The bottle also has an extra UV barrier and an oxygen scavenger, which helps to prolong the oil’s shelf life.

Origin: Nuy Valley, Worcester
Style: Medium
Cultivar: Frantoio and Mission
Tasting Notes: Notes of freshly cut green grass and a hint of apple is followed by a slight bitterness and infused with a gentle pepper aroma that fades into a pleasant aftertaste.
Price: R159.99 per 500 ml
Recipe Inspiration: Willow Creek’s Extra Virgin Olive Oil pairs perfectly with this Cumin Roasted Cauliflower Soup

willowcreek.co.za | Facebook | Instagram  | Twitter

Waverley Hills

waverley hills extra virgin olive oil

Waverley Hills Organic Estate is situated between Tulbagh and Ceres, at the foothills of the breathtaking Witzenberg Mountain Range. Their Extra Virgin Olive Oil is produced from hand picked olives specially selected at optimal ripeness, including Leccino and Frantoio as dominant cultivars.

Origin: Between Tulbagh and Ceres
Style: Medium
Cultivar: Frantoio, Leccino, FS 17 and Corretina
Tasting Notes: A smooth and buttery mouthfeel with freshly cut grass and pungent peppery notes shape this complex olive oil.
Price: R135 per 500 ml
Recipe Inspiration: Waverley Hills’s Extra Virgin Olive Oil works wonderfully in the chimichurri for this recipe for Reverse Sear Pork Rib Chops with Jalapeño and Green Apple Chimichurri 

waverleyhills.co.za | Instagram | Facebook


Klipvlei is situated approximately 10km from Paarl in the Boland, a district in the Western Cape renowned for its beautiful vineyards, incredible wines and stand out olive varieties. Currently home to the fourth and fifth generation of Geldenhuys, Klipfontein has been in the family since 1896. Nicolaas Geldenhuys has a deeply rooted belief in his products. In his words,

“Olive oil feeds the body, improves one’s health and has invaluable nutrients, thus contributing to sustaining a healthy lifestyle”.

The four primary types of olives being farmed at Klipvlei are Calamata and Mission, both used to produce table olives, and Leccino and Frantoio olives, which are cold-pressed for the production of extra virgin olive oil. The cold extraction of olives happens on the Klipvlei farm, hence producing the highest quality oil as the time frame from picking to pressing is hugely diminished. Klipvlei Olive Oil also boasts no additives, making 100% pure extra virgin olive oil.

From the planting of “a few olive trees” many years ago, the olive farming on Klipvlei has grown quite substantially and into a self-sustaining farming operation, one which Nicolaas Geldenhuys is committed to develop and advance for future generations.

Origin: Paarl
Style: Medium
Cultivar: Leccino and Frantoio
Tasting Notes: Fruit of green and ripe olives, olive leaf, almond, walnut, pine seed, green banana and apple.
Price: R65 per 500ml
Recipe Inspiration: Drizzle Klipvlei’s Extra Virgin Olive Oil over this Chargrilled Spring Onion, Pea & Asparagus Salad with Jalapeño Vinaigrette 


PG Fruit Olive Estate

pg fruit olive estatePG Fruit Olive Estate is located in Bosssieveld, roughly 7km outside Villiersdorp, and are the producers of multi-award winning Extra Virgin Olive Oil. In 2020, their olive oil won gold at the SA Olive Awards as well at the Arora International Awards. Owners, Gerhard and Ciska Du Toit, pride themselves in offering exceptional quality olive products at affordable prices, while also placing emphasis on the importance of sustainability in their farming methods. By practicing bioethical farming, they aim to constantly reduce their carbon footprint by farming close to nature.

PG Olive Estate offers fermented table olives, as well as Extra Virgin Olive Oil, all produced from hand-picked olives that are processed using methods specially designed by Gerhard and Ciska to ensure the highest quality. Their EVOO is available locally via their social networks, or at local weekly farmers markets in the area, where you’ll be able to buy it from Gerhard and Ciska themselves.

Origin: Bossieveld
Style: Medium
Cultivar: Frantoio and Mission
Tasting Notes: Fruity nose with green notes of herb, tomato and nut.
Price: R95 per 500ml
Recipe Inspiration: Try this Toasted Panzanella Salad with Burrata and Thyme Vinaigrette using PG Fruit’s Extra Virgin Olive Oil

pgfruit.co.za | Facebook | Instagram

Olyfberg Vrugte

olyfberg extra virgin olive oil

Olyfberg, home of award-winning Extra Virgin Olive Oil, is situated on the banks of the Breede River on the outskirts of Robertson, where hectares of olive groves sweep the countryside. The first olive trees were planted in 1995 and the farm currently boasts 75-hectares of Frantoio, Leccino, Koratina, Manzanella and Kalamata olives.

The olives are handpicked and transported to the production facility on the farm to be cold-pressed so as to preserve the delicate flavours and characteristics.

Origin: Breede River Valley
Style: Medium
Cultivar: Mission, Frantoio and Leccino
Tasting Notes: A delicate oil with flavours of green apple and almonds on the nose.
Price: R129 per 500 ml
Recipe Inspiration: Finish off Spaghetti and Meatballs with a flourish of Olyfberg Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

olyberg.com | Facebook


rooshoekRooshoek Farm is nestled at the foot of the Groenberg, outside of the picturesque town of Wellington, also known as ‘the heart of the Cape Winelands’. A valley rich in fertile soil due to decomposed granite originating from an extinct volcano, the olive trees and vineyards flourish in the climate and conditions. The warm summer climate and extreme south easterly winds, which the trees have had to to endure over their life span, contribute to the quality of Rooshoek’s noteworthy 100% Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

rooshoek extra virgin olive oil

Rooshoek Extra Virgin Olive Oil is available in elegant 500 and 750 ml bottles (ideal for gifts and fine dining), as well as the more economical 2L bag-in-box.

Origin: Wellington
Style: Medium
Cultivar: Frantoio and Mission
Tasting Notes: The blend of Mission and Frantoio cultivars has a fresh, nutty, ripe apple aroma and on the palate it is soft and fruity with just a hint of pepperiness.
Price: R90 per 500ml
Recipe Inspiration:  Prepare these Pea, Ricotta and Couscous Fritters with Lemon & Tahini Sauce using Rooshoek’s Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

rooshoek.co.za | Facebook

Want to learn more about EVOO – read our guide to tasting olive oil.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>