Long Meadow Ranch

Prato Lungo and Napa Valley Select
2006-Vintage Extra Virgin Olive Oils Released

LMR featured destination for the olive oil “experience”

June 1 , 2006, Rutherford, CA

Long Meadow Ranch Prato Lungo and Napa Valley Select Extra Virgin Olive OilLong Meadow Ranch (LMR) released its award-winning 2006-vintage olive oils today. The latest extra virgin oils released by LMR are the condiment oil, Prato Lungo (which means 'Long Meadow' in Italian) and the "everyday" blending and mixing oil, Napa Valley Select.

This product release follows on the heels of an extensive New York Times travel article that featured LMR as a prime destination for the increasingly popular new travel interest - olive oil tourism. Writer Wendy Knight acknowledged that, “. . . as olive oil is becoming more widely used by Americans, the number of olive-oil producers has risen, as has the interest in touring and tasting.” LMR offers several different olive oil visitor experiences, including the regularly scheduled LMR Wine & Olive Oil Tour each Saturday morning at 10:30 AM.

The new releases continue the tradition of extraordinary ultra premium, extra virgin olive oils from Long Meadow Ranch.

The handcrafted estate-produced Prato Lungo presents a fresh nose with green grass, wheat, green apple, and a touch of citrus. The entry into the mouth is silky smooth while the fresh clean flavors and peppery aftertaste reinforce the oil's role as the perfect condiment or finishing oil for fresh vegetables. “Indeed, Prato Lungo olive oil felt like a piece of fine silk floating inside the mouth,” said Knight.

Not surprisingly, Prato Lungo is a kitchen staple to some of the most renowned chefs in America. After several years of using the Prato Lungo, Chicago’s Charlie Trotter chose to include the oil in his PBS show, Kitchen Sessions with Charlie Trotter.

"Nestled high above Napa Valley is an enclave of organic farming that produces one of the world’s great olive oils. Prato Lungo is an oil that I admire for its intensity. It has a fresh, high-tone flavor and a bit of heat that makes it perfect for finishing a dish when I want to add a final note of complexity or richness," said Charlie Trotter as he prepared leek confit soup with olive oil-poached salmon and basmati rice cake while on the air. ". . . Though it may seem odd to taste olive oil by itself, it is only then that the oil reveals its true subtleties. And, in this case, extraordinary flavors of grass and citrus and pepper . . . LMR . . . the source for the great olive oil, Prato Lungo," Trotter concluded.

Long Meadow Ranch crafts its Napa Valley Select oil as an everyday companion to the Prato Lungo. CreatedNapa Valley Select from a blend of Long Meadow Ranch's own olives and olives raised by organic farming neighbors, Napa Valley Select is perfect for leafy salad greens, with bread, or with basil in a fresh pesto. The Manzanillo, Frantoio, and Lecchino olives included in the blend provide a touch of natural bitterness and black and white pepper that goes well with greens. Napa Valley Select adds a rustic feel that is perfect with many Tuscan recipes.

"One of the keys to making extraordinary olive oil is the capability of pressing olives within a few hours of picking. We preserve the freshness of the fruit by processing immediately with our state-of-the-art Pieralisi equipment right here on the Ranch," said co-owner Laddie Hall. "And, of course, our organic growing and processing practices are certified by the California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF)."

For more than a decade, Long Meadow Ranch has been working on the restoration of the historic Prato Lungo orchards that were discovered hidden in the dense second growth forest on the Ranch's hillsides. The trees were planted in the 1870s by homesteader E. J. Church in what the Napa Valley Historical Society has now established as Napa Valley's oldest commercial olive orchards. Napa County Landmarks recently awarded a Certificate of Merit to Long Meadow Ranch for the restoration of the orchards.

The trees are believed to have come to California as cuttings aboard ships via Cape Horn. Although the olives are clearly oil-producing cultivars, even DNA testing has not yet revealed their specific origin. "We do know that these olives produce an extraordinary oil and the uncertainty about their true origin only adds to the mystique," said Ted Hall.

Prato Lungo is available in a limited supply for $45 per 500 ml bottle, plus shipping. The Napa Valley Select is available for $18, per 375 ml bottle, plus shipping. The oils are available through the website or by calling toll-free 877-NAPA-OIL (877-627-2645).

The oils may also be purchased seasonally at the St. Helena Farmer's Market (Friday mornings at Crane Park in St. Helena) and at Long Meadow Ranch Rutherford Gardens (on Saturdays from June through October), located at 1796 South St. Helena Highway, Rutherford, CA.

The LMR Wine & Olive Oil Tour leaves from LMR Rutherford Gardens at 10:30 AM every Saturday and is limited to 10 guests. Cost is $35 per person. Reservations are required, which can be made online or by calling 707.963.4555, ext. 161.

Click for further information on all of LMR’s wine and olive oil excursion programs.

Prato Lungo and Napa Valley Select samples are available by request. Prato Lungo and Napa Valley Select images, and a complete pictorial of the olive picking and crushing process are available by request.

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Long Meadow Ranch is an innovative organic farming operation - and purveyor of fine food - located high above the Napa Valley on the picturesque slopes of the Mayacamas Mountains where it produces extraordinary wine, extra virgin olive oil, grass-fed beef, eggs, and heirloom fruits and vegetables for Napa Valley's finest restaurants. Long Meadow Ranch produces ultra premium wines and extra virgin olive oils, under the Long Meadow Ranch Winery, Ranch House Red, Prato Lungo, and Napa Valley Select labels. Beyond the Napa Valley, America's top chefs have regularly featured Long Meadow Ranch wines and olive oils.

Long Meadow Ranch has been known as such since 1872 when it was established as an original "patent grant" ranch signed over by President Ulysses S. Grant. Having been home to a variety of uses during its long history, Long Meadow Ranch continues to grow and prosper through Ted, Laddie and Christopher Hall's stewardship.

The Halls continue to restore and preserve Napa Valley's oldest olive groves, as well as add new plantings of olive trees and vineyards. They have also brought cattle, poultry, and vegetables back into commercial production. Appaloosa horse breeding, along with an extensive composting operation, round out the integrated farming activities at the Ranch.

"Excellence through Responsible Farming" is the motto of Long Meadow Ranch, bolstered by the belief that world-class products can be produced using sustainable, organic farming methods. Long Meadow Ranch does not use herbicides or pesticides and its products are organically grown and certified by the California Certified Organic Farmers.

Contact: Chris Hall
Phone: 707-963-4555
Email: chris@longmeadowranch.com

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