Simliar to the different varitations of grapes used to make different types wines for the different taste, different types of olives are used to make distinct types of olive oils. The olives are impacted by weather, soil conditions, and how they are handled and harvested. Extra virgin olive oil is an unrefined oil and the highest-quality of olive oil one can purchase. There are extremely specific guidelines oil have to meet in order to receive the label “extra-virgin.” Due to the way extra-virgin olive oil is produced, it must retain its true olive taste, and has to have a lower level of oleic acid than other olive oil that are made. It also must contain more of the natural vitamins and minerals found in the olives themselves. According to the standards of the International Olive Oil Council, extra virgin olive oil is obtained only from the olive, using mechanical means, principally thermal conditions, which leave the oil unaltered in any way. It has not undergone any treatment other than washing, decanting, centrifuging, and filtering. Extra virgin olive oil is considered an unrefined oil since it’s not treated with chemicals or altered by temperature. What sets this oil apart from otheres is the lower level of oleic acid. It always must contain no more than 0,8% oleic acid. It usually has a golden-green color to the oil itself, and has a distinct flavor and a slight peppery finish to it. When cooking with extra-virgin olive oil, it does have a low smoke point than any other oils, meaning it cooks at a lower temperature, so you must be careful. When using extra virgin olive oil during cooking it is used for both on its own raw or used when slightly heated. You can use it drizzled over top vegetables, to finish off dishes, and also as a base for salad dressings.