One night at Mezze, olive oil’s my oyster. Chef Micah Wexler, top toque at the modern Mediterranean restaurant Mezze, partnered with Calivirgin Olive Oils to create a special chef’s tasting menu available for one night only. I was invited to an “intimate media dinner” which is code for, “your dining companions won’t be that bothered you’re taking photographs and/or tweeting while eating… because they will be too.” The Tomato Flatbread above was our Second Course and a not only the standout of Wexler’s meal but the most fun to photograph.
Part of the attraction at Mezze is the wood burning pizza oven off the main dining room. Fluffy, fresh pita is the perfect vehicle for sampling the line of Calivirgin Olive Oils. The Bountiful Basil Oil tastes of real basil and the Lusty Lemon of fresh lemon zest. The flavors are bright and clean without being overpowering.
But it’s the Hot Virgin Jalapeno Olive Oil that really piques my tastebuds; super fresh jalapeno flavor with a lingering, spicy kick I can feel in all the corners of my mouth.
I ask Gina Sans, owner at Coldani Olive Ranch, about the natural flavoring process. Sans explains that Calivirgin does not use flavor essence, rather, the fruit and herbs are pressed with the olives during the oil making process. To create the Hot Virgin Jalapeno Olive Oil, fresh green jalapenos and newly harvested Coldani Olives are pressed at the same time, producing a superior flavored, punchy extra virgin olive oil I encourage you to try.
Chef Wexler’s presentation at Mezze showcases the Calivirgin Extra Virgin Olive Oil in all of the courses. I would have enjoyed the use of of the flavored oils for this unique meal, the Hot Virgin Jalapeno Olive Oil in particular.