I'd like to improve my knowledge of olive oil (and olives), by just seeing if I can tell the difference between common brands like California Olive Ranch, Partanna, Lucini, Colavita, etc. I can taste them and come up with my own descriptors. But, how do I see if my descriptors match those of the sommeliers?

Basically, I'm looking for a low-budget way to educate myself and my palate to detect nuances in olive oil.

Are there some resources out there that will tell me if I'm right or wrong?

  • 1
    What are you trying to achieve by learning this? Just personally enjoy olives or olive oil? Teach others?
    – quarague
    Commented Jun 17 at 8:30
  • I want to become a sommelier Commented Jun 20 at 3:33

1 Answer 1


For your purposes an Aroma Wheel could work. There you are guided through the taste and get an idea on what you could try to taste.

I found experimenting with aroma wheels for wine very helpful.

A quick googling showed that there are aroma wheels for olive oil, too.

They are of course not answering the question what others tasted but I find this less of an issue as perception of taste is highly personal.

  • Perhaps, but then there is a certification to become a sommelier. So, a certain part of it is objective. Commented Jun 20 at 3:34
  • @underdog987 Of course there is in a professional context. The problem I see here is to get hold on such a description. Also to my understanding these tastings are done in very controlled environments that you can‘t replicate at home easily. Best option would of course be to attend to a workshop with an experienced taster but that would not qualify for inexpensive and easily at home
    – jmk
    Commented Jun 20 at 5:51

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.