Extra virgin olive oil is the only foodstuff that requires a testing method defined by UE law (UEE Regulation 2568/91).
Tasting consists of thoroughly examining the oil using three of
the senses: sight, smell and
It is therefore a "sensory analysis" that can be summarized by the following steps.
Approximately 25g of oil (1/3 of a glass), is poured out. The taster examines the colour then tilts the glass, turning it 360° in order to coat the inside as fully as possible. He then smells the sample, briefly inhaling for a few seconds at a time.
After the smelling the sample, he judges the flavour (a
combination of aroma, taste and texture).
A sip of approximately 3g is tasted, which will reach all the taste buds in the oral cavity, from the front part and the tongue to the sides and then to the back and the palate. All this is necessary as perception of the four primary flavours (sweet, salty, acidic and bitter) varies according to each zone.
The taster breathes in with his tongue against his palate, lips slightly apart and then relaxes. This contact allows him to evaluate texture: fluidity, pastiness, tingling or stinging.